Hey, readers and writers!
Today, we’re taking part in a blog tour for Amy Braun’s recent novel, Obsidian Sky. I hope you enjoy this quick overview and review. The book just recently came out, so show it some love and let us know in the comment section or via social media if you have any thoughts about this novel or about the Dark Sky series as a whole. Enjoy!
Rating: 4 stars
The third and final novel in an epic steampunk horror series, OBSIDIAN SKY closes the dramatic adventures of Claire, Sawyer, Gemma, and Nash, digging up the final secrets of their past, bringing new allies into a dangerous fray, and drawing friends and foes into a battle where the cost may be too much to pay.
The final struggle against the Hellions has arrived. A trapped engineer and a desperate marauder scramble to fight an enemy with unspeakable power on its side. Time is running out, and one world will be destroyed.
After sacrificing herself to save the lives of her friends and family, Claire Abernathy struggles to outwit her Hellion captors. They torment and terrify her into working on a weapon with the sole purpose of obliterating the world, friends, and love she has struggled to save. If Claire has any chance of saving those she loves, she must delve deeper into the Hellion world, and witness nightmares she could never imagine.
In Westraven, Sawyer Kendric is desperate to find the woman he loves. To do so, he must finally embrace his family’s atrocious past and heal the wounds it has caused. He will be forced to make new allies, uncover secrets that change all he knows, and find the courage to lead a ragtag crew into the darkest, deadliest battle of their lives.
Claire and Sawyer fight to save their broken world in the final installment of the epic DARK SKY trilogy.
What I enjoyed:
Truth be told, this is only my second time visiting the Dark Sky series. I’ve already reviewed Braun’s novella, Amber Sky, so I got to meet Sawyer and Nash at the very beginning of their friendship. This novel is the last of the series, so there’s a lot of bonding and action that I’ve missed as a result.
Nevertheless, the novel certainly took me on a fun ride! I’m not a major fan of dystopian novels because they seem to be deeply rooted in human despair and carnage, but the steampunk and pirate feel of the series made the fight for humanity an enriching and exciting one.
From the get-go, Braun is able to ensure the reader is caught up to speed on who is who in the series and what you might’ve missed if you jumped in late like I did. I appreciated even the physical descriptions of the Hellions so I could keep up with the world building and what the baddies are up to. She was able to fill me in without slowing down the plot or rushing.
As always, I’m impressed with Braun’s knack for describing action and fighting. There’s a lot of hand-to-hand combat and dueling, and her description flow is easy to follow and creative. The only annoyance was the over-use of certain phrases of wind rushing out of the lungs and other descriptors for pain. Since the characters often take severe blows to the head and other sensitive areas, it seemed a bit excessive that they would experience such excruciating pain and either run away or not pass out.
Without giving too much away, I would say this ending was exciting and worth the buildup and tension created throughout the novel—and I’m sure the rest of the series. You can tell Braun enjoyed writing this series and her joy and talent shine through the characters and the narrative.
Cool! So on to some other goodies—a quick excerpt and a Q&A with the author!
Q&A with Amy Braun
Q: Were you nervous about writing the end of Obsidian Sky? Was everything planned or were some events spontaneous?
A: I’m a meticulous planner when it comes to world building and plots, but there were some events that I hadn’t intended that were added into the final story. Certain characters and events appeared in places and scenes where I hadn’t intended them to. Characters acted in ways I hadn’t originally planned, or would have to think creatively to escape a challenge.
I had a great time experimenting and using a lot of “What If” scenarios where my characters were pushed to the limits and forced to react unconventionally. I felt like I was experiencing their adventures with them, and at some points, didn’t know what would happen next, either.
Q: How did it feel to close out a series you’ve worked on for so long?
A: It’s a mix of sadness and happiness. On one hand, I realize how much I’ll miss these characters and this world. I came up with the idea when I was fourteen years old, and now over ten years later, it’s finally over. It’s a lot to let go of. But on the other hand, I feel a great deal of closure.
Here was this crazy, random idea I had as a kid, and I finally went ahead and made it a reality. Now that it’s done with and received with better success than I could have hoped for, helped me establish my career, I’m aware that if I work hard, put in the time and effort, and do all the re-writes, I can transform any idea into a book. And if you’re an author still hesitant about such a thing, read the opening dedication to Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch. She did the same thing, and she became published. Never give up on your idea!
Q: What will you miss most about the series and the characters?
A: I’m definitely going to miss the world and the creatures in it. Writing the Hellions and Hellnore was so much fun. I’m also going to miss Claire’s inventiveness, Sawyer’s attitude, Nash’s soft-heart, and Gemma’s tendency to scream her lungs out in battle.
Q: Is there any chance of a continuation or a spin-off series in the future?
A: A reviewer actually asked me that not too long ago. While I’ll never say never to anything, at this moment, I have no plans to continue the Dark Sky books. Nash and Gemma have both already had their own spin-off prequel novellas, titled Amber Sky and Smoke Sky respectively, and if I did do another spinoff, it would likely be a prequel series. But the odds of that happening in the near future are slim, given how I want to move onto other projects.
Q: Now that the series is over, what’s next?
A: At the moment, I’m working on two brand new series. I don’t want to say much about them to avoid giving away spoilers, but the first series will be an urban fantasy involving the Greek gods, and the second project is a young adult fantasy series with gargoyles that was inspired by Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. I wish I could tell you more at this point, but I can’t give you anything such as titles or release dates as both of these projects are going to be going to literary agents.
I received amazing feedback on the Greek god project from one of my favorite fantasy authors, Michael J. Sullivan, and have been diligently working to improve it. I’ll know in the next month or so whether or not it’ll be going the indie or traditional route, and my newsletter subscribers and website/social media followers will be the first to know.
The same can be said for the YA fantasy gargoyle project. I’m working on editing it and am hoping that in the next month or so I can send it to literary agents. YA fantasy is extremely popular right now, and I’m hoping that will be my “in,” but if not, I will happily take the project through independent publishing. I learned a lot last year and am ready to use that knowledge to expand my horizons and hopefully gain new readers.
At this point, the only project that will be happening will be the release of the complete Dark Sky box set in April. But anything can happen in this industry, and I doubt anything could slow me down at this point. I’m having too much fun!
If you’d like to learn more about Amy Braun and her work, you can catch up with her via social media:
Have you read this novel? Do you have your own thoughts about it? Share with me in the comments! You can also see all of my other book reviews by checking our the Book Reviews tab.