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Publisher's Summary

2000: The wreckage of a downed WWII fighter plane is discovered in the forests near Russia's Ukrainian border. The aircraft belonged to Natalya Azarova, ace pilot and pin-up girl for Soviet propaganda, but the question of her fate remains unanswered. Was she a German spy who faked her own death, as the Kremlin claims? Her lover, Valentin Orlov, now a highly-decorated general, refuses to believe it. Lily, a young Australian woman, has moved to Moscow to escape from tragedy. She becomes fascinated by the story of Natalya, and when she meets an elderly woman who claims to know the truth behind the rumours, Lily is drawn deeper into the mystery.

©2014 Copyright © Belinda Alexandra 2014. (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

Critic Reviews

"One of our great storytellers.'" ( Sunday Telegraph)

What listeners say about Sapphire Skies

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A Disturbing Disappointment

This book was difficult to listen to and I finally just gave up after many grueling hours of hoping it would improve. It is a graphically violent story about war, betrayal, hatred and extreme loss. Disturbing on so many levels. I don't understand how this book could be considered a "wonderful holiday listen" to quote several reviewers on amazon.

I usually enjoy Caroline Lee's narration, but listening to her Australian voice reading in the Russian accents was painful at times.

The "mystery" was so predictable that it was just plain boring to boot. I am sorry that I wasted as much time on this book as I did. It was hopeless. Can't recommend it in any way at all.

42 people found this helpful

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Fabulous

Kept me intrigued from the very first chapter. I loved this story... Heart wrenching in parts and leaves you feeling that you can really survive anything. Highly recommend ! Another great reading from Caroline Lee too!

8 people found this helpful

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I cried when I listened I cried when it ended. wow

I can't wait to hear another book by this author. so touching and beautiful. the characters were amazing.

5 people found this helpful

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Russian history never interested me until...

Wow! This book gave me a much better understanding of Russian history. Although I have lived internationally and generally gravitate to historical fiction, Russian history was something that I wasn't terribly interested in. However, this book really draws in you (after you get used to the multiple names for the same people) and explores a side of WW2 that most aren't all that aware of. I probably never would have listened to this book if I hadn't already fallen in love with the author's other book, Silver Wattle, which is about Australia in the 20's. But I thought I give another book by her a go and see if she was a captivating in a different culture as she was about Australia. I was not disappointed.

5 people found this helpful

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Wonderful Book, don't miss out on this one

If you could sum up Sapphire Skies in three words, what would they be?

Wonderful, Educational, and this book is a page turner. Rich in history!

Have you listened to any of Caroline Lee’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Caroline Lee's performance is excellent!

Any additional comments?

Worth a credit. Don't miss out on this one.

8 people found this helpful

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Excellent!!

I really loved this book. It is loosely based on the WWII Soviet pilot Lydia Litvyak who never went into battle without her lipstick and powder. She was brave and audacious. It is a story about Stalin's sick reign that has forever left its mark on Russian society; it is a mystery; it is frightening in a way most cannot understand thankfully; and it is a love story. Well worth the credit. I will listen to it again. Belinda Alexandra has become a favorite author, and Caroline Lee has delivered her usual stunning performance.

6 people found this helpful

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Sapphire Skies

Beautiful story. I felt so many different emotions as I listened. Wonderful author and as always Caroline Lee does not disappoint.

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Sago heroine WW2 Stalinist Russia

Incredible story of living inside Stalin’s Russia through WW2 as a woman fighter pilot. Phenomenal. Historical feminist fiction at its most untold.

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Excellent story

Well written with perfectly developed characters and storyline. One of her best. Highly recommend this book!

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Wonderful book

Belinda Alexandra has done it again! Love each and every one of her books, just sad I have to wait until she writes a new one.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-01-17

Drove me mad. Couldn't finish it!

Why oh why has the author repeated whole chunks of narrative? It makes it too hard to follow the (very good) storyline. the first time I thought that I had inadvertently wound it back, but then it happened again and again. it got to the point that it was so annoying that I couldn't finish the book. I have read every other book by Belinda Alexander and she does not use this stupid trick anywhere else.

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  • MAGGS
  • 09-08-14

Sapphire Skies-really enjoyable book

If you could sum up Sapphire Skies in three words, what would they be?

Really Enjoyable read

What was one of the most memorable moments of Sapphire Skies?

Discovering Natasha

Have you listened to any of Caroline Lee’s other performances? How does this one compare?

Loved narrator not heard her before

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Don't know but I did listen to book fairly quickly

Any additional comments?

Really enjoyable book

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  • Paddington
  • 05-28-14

Another enjoyable Belinda Alexandra novel

I love Belinda Alexandra's stories. While they are all historically and culturally different they all have an element of danger, an attractive and capable young woman as the main character, romance and a connection to Australia. I enjoy the background settings of these characters which are set in various countries in Europe or China. As a result of the turmoil of the major wars of our last century caused migration to counties like Australia.
Sapphire Skies was fascinating dealing with aspects of Stalin's powerful and cruel regime in Russia. While I loved this book, it seemed a little shorter to me and in some places lacked the depth of some of her previous novels. However, I eagerly await Belinda Alexandra's next novel. I am a great fan!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sue Catterall
  • 06-28-21

An amazing read

Emotional and riveting, very sad with a huge story line. Wonderful reading and beautifully written.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-08-21

Awesome book

I love this book, I just wanted to turn each page to keep on reading the story, there was so many twists and turns that make it a must to read. Caroline makes the characters come to life so that you feel every emotion and thought that they are going through. Fully recommend

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-07-17

Not as good as I hoped

I did enjoy the details about history especially about the German concentration camps. I lost interest at periods throughout this book to be honest. I chose it based on reviews of The Bronze Horseman which said they were similar but this was definitely not as engrossing as The Bronze Horseman. Still, I enjoyed it enough to try more of Belinda Alexandra's books.
I do enjoy listening to Caroline Lee when she's using an Australian accent and she did do the Russian accent well too but she dropped in and out of character.

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  • Lynnette
  • 12-05-16

Another powerful story.

I loved this one just as much as Tuscan Rose. Full of action, love, loyalty and humanity. Caroline must enjoy acting these parts, she really is my favourite reader.
Again I learnt my history, this time in Russia.
Thank you Belinda, you are a clever author.

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  • Chris
  • 12-02-15

Enjoyment factor

A little disappointing after the first 3 which were very good and really kept my attention

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  • Rosemary
  • 06-02-15

Loved it.

A very interesting subject, a great read and the narration was fabulous as always. Recommended.