Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza

inwonderland49's review against another edition

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This review was originally posted on In Wonderland

My Thoughts

Okay, so let's get this out.. I really enjoyed this story! Were there problems? Sure. But all-in-all, I thought it was a great story. I liked the writing. I liked the characters. I thought that this was a good debut and I can only expect more from Rhoda in the future!

There were a couple issues, however. There are times where I can see some readers getting bored, but I feel like that there is enough action within the entirety of the story to keep someone entertained. It kept me entertained. The other issue I had was that there is one thing that you expect to happen from reading the summary.. and it just doesn't happen. Now this could be because it is from the Advanced Reader Copy and not everything is finalized in the ARCs. Or it could have just been the wrong way to summarize the book. But the main reason why I rated it 3.5 stars was because this particular plotline just wasn't there.

Other than that, I had a very enjoyable time reading this book and I loved the worldbuilding that Rhoda Belleza had created and I really wouldn't mind seeing more within this world (and thank god there's a second book to this)! If you love great worldbuilding, writing, and a strong Sci-fi presence, then I think you should give this one a try!

About the Author

Rhoda Belleza was raised in Los Angeles, where she grew up writing X-Files fanfiction and stuffing her face with avocados. She's a children's editor at a publishing house and writes from a sunny Brooklyn apartment stuffed with far too many bikes and far too many shoes. When she's not writing, Rhoda obsesses over nail art tutorials, watches kung fu movies, and sews together crooked things that pass for clothes. Empress of a Thousand Skies is her debut novel. Follow her on Twitter @rhodabee.


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Tour Schedule

Week One:

2/6 – Brittany’s Book Rambles – Guest Post

2/6 – Bibliophile Gathering – Review

2/6 – Seeing Double in Neverland – Mood Board

2/7 – Tales of a Ravenous Reader – Excerpt

2/7 – In Wonderland – Review

2/8 – Across the Words – Character Fan Casting

2/8 – Novel Ink – Review

2/8 – Bookling Critics – Review

2/9 – The Young Folks – Interview

2/9 – Here’s to Happy Endings – Review

2/10 – Butter My Books – Book Look

2/10 – Ex Libris – Review

2/10 – My Friends Are Fiction – Guest Post

Week Two:

2/13 – Stories & Sweeties – Empress Cupcakes

2/13 – What Sarah Read – Guest Post

2/13 – MundieMoms – Review

2/14 – YA Wednesdays – Character Fashion

2/14 – Fiction Fare – Review

2/15 – Once Upon a Twilight – Favorite Quotes

2/15 – The Books Buzz – Review

2/15 – Take Me Away to a Great Read – Review

2/16 – The YA Book Traveler – Empress Trailer

2/16 – Bookworm Everlasting – Review

2/17 – The Forest of Words and Pages – Like/Try/Why

2/17 – The Paige Turner – Interview

2/17 – Fangirlish – Review

Let's talk about it!

Did you read Empress of a Thousand Skies? Do you want to? What draws you into wanting to read this? Or what doesn't?

jazzyjan94's review against another edition

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This review appears on my blog:

Even though Empress of a Thousand Skies was an interesting read, it was also kind of a let down. I’ve been trying to find something to fill The Illuminae Files void until Obsidio comes out in March, and I was kind of hoping that this would be the book to help make the wait easier. However, it ended up being pretty slow, I still liked it, but it was slow and confusing.

There were so many things that are not explained in the world-building of the setting of the novel which are mentioned later on the book. I don’t mind if world-building is continuously happening throughout the novel, but there were times things were mentioned and I had no idea what they were.

When it comes to the plot, even though it sounds like it would be interesting, it just isn’t executed in the way I was expecting. I liked the plot, but it was slow and never really gripped me. And the “major” plot points/twists that happen didn’t really capture my interest.

Characters…while I liked them, they also didn’t really develop much over the course of the novel. A lot of what happens to Rhee and Alyosha seemed kind of predictable and the ending didn’t leave me wishing that the sequel was out already. The dual story lines threw me off because I was expecting them to intercept eventually but they never did.

I did like the map and with the way it ended I am interested in checking out the sequel when it comes out later this year, but I am not going to rush out and get it…I’ll read it when I read it.

Due to lack of character development and a slow plot I am giving Empress of a Thousand Skies 3/5 Stars.

geldauran's review against another edition

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2.5- although there isn't anything particularly wrong with the writing, I just didn't feel connected to either of the POV narrators and felt distant from their prospective love interests as well. Other people might enjoy this much more.

scrollsofdragons's review against another edition

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Damm that was an enjoyable journey through the galaxy. Though it says the two fugitives must join forces on the synopsis and they never meet, what? I was left waiting, waiting...nope, they just aren't going to meet.. Romance bleh but I liked quite a few of the characters like Aly is for sure my favourite, so adorable. Rhee is a little dumb but im guessing thats just a fault of hers by not thinking through things properly and being as stubborn as hell once she gets an idea, I liked her enough though.
A mom legit says to her son when he's out sitting in the sun and take into account he is black, she says "you'll get even darker" I cant even.

wingless13's review against another edition

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This is the first YA novel I've read in a few years and was surprised how fast it flowed once I started it. The author did a good job jumping right into the new universe without over explaining or leaving me behind as a reader. Only drawback I noticed was the repetitiveness that gave characters a lack of depth at times.

deservingporcupine's review against another edition

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Really more like 3.5. Both very fun and serious enough that there were moments I had to stop because the refugee parts were so well done. I loved the Aly parts, but Rhee was not particularly well developed. It was just too short and rushed. I'm hoping the rest of the series helps flesh out the characters more.

bookwife's review against another edition

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I have been on a YA fantasy kick the last couple days. I have had these books since basically the day they came out and I just kept putting them off so I decided to push through them this week. And it has been a total nightmare...

Am I over YA fantasy books? I really freaking hope not. But I hated this one. I was so unbelievably bored and there really wasn't a romance I could focus on to get over my boredom. There was a lot that happened but I feel liked it was all so rushed. I was confused a lot. I kept waiting for the 2 POVs to meet and they never did and I didn't understand that either.

Ill read next book probably but Im really kind of MEH about it.

joscelynhe's review against another edition

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Too many things were happening at once during every page of this YA novel. It felt distracted, confused, and, frankly, it felt like it wasn't worth my time to finish. Really disappointed, I had high hopes.

quolwy's review against another edition

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Fast paced, action packed fun, with switching perspectives every chapter to make sure you're always right in the heat of the action.

Hope to pick up the next book right away!

emiann2023's review against another edition

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The beginning almost made me want to drop this book. There was too much unfamiliar language and it was overwhelming. There were also some obvious plot twists that I won't go into detail on for spoilers sake.

But, things did really pick up, and I like how this story didn't follow the blurb in the way that I expected it to. And the deaths were well written and in one important case, unexpected. And the writing was well done, for the most part. A few idioms felt out of place, but it was nothing major.

I guess my biggest issue with this book is that it actually rushed too much. Particularly in the beginning where I was just too confused. If the second book takes a little more time to lay out situations and explain alien concepts and odd time jumps, the story could really benefit.

Overall this was an interesting story, and I look forward to what the next installment brings.