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Stars & Ashes

The Saoirse Saga, Book 1
Narrated by: Apryl Renee West
Series: The Saoirse Saga, Book 1
Length: 4 hrs and 46 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (15 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Kia stands alone against an intergalactic empire. With everything she loves destroyed, she wants revenge.

When invading forces annex the planet Emankora, Kia’s family is murdered, and she is sentenced to slavery in the asteroid mines. Surviving the harsh treacherous conditions takes grit and tenacity, but when the emperor’s son tours the facility, she inadvertently saves his life.

As a reward, the heir offers her the opportunity to enter the ranks of his personal elite guards, but with 19 other ambitious candidates vying for the vacant positions, she faces intense competition. Driven by powerful emotions, Kia unfalteringly pursues her goal of assassinating the heir and avenging her loved ones.

©2017 Teagan Kearney (P)2019 Teagan Kearney

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Powerful story

I received this book for free at my request but the opinion is of my own. Wholly cow what did I just read? This story literally grabs you from the very beginning and doesn’t let go. If I could give more than 5 stars I would. Kia just lost her whole family and now a slave of an empire that’s taking over many planets. She fights through many situations trying to stay strong so that she can have her revenge, however her situation isn’t all she sees. Definitely looking forward to book 2.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Stars & Ashes

Wow, what a start to the series! This book is full of action and I did not expect it to take the turn that it took. The ending set things up for what promises to be an exciting sequel... I just hope we don’t have to wait to long!

Teagan Kearney is so creative. The storyline that she created not only kept me on the edge of my seat, but it left me wanting more!

Apryl Renee West brought the story to life with her great performance.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and I have voluntarily left this review.

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space opera

I have read other books by this author but I have to say that this is my favourite so far. I think this is because it is fast paced and things happen quickly. We are moved from one scene to another. There is not a lot of world building but this did not bother me. I prefere more action and dialogue than in depth description.
I liked the main character and I did not feel like slapping her for the decisions she made.
The narrator voiced the characters but I found her to be slow so I had to speed it up, which for me made it more better to listen too.

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can't wait for the next one!!

Teagan Kearney, thanks for a fine Sci Fi experience with an open end and promise for more. I thoroughly enjoyed this one from the first paragraph to the tantalizing ending. I am sure (if this work is an indication) that the next book in the series will be credit worthy.

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I'm on the fence with this one...

It's the first installment of the series, has all the benefits and faults of being an introduction to it and ends with a cliffhanger... That's why I'm on the fence with my rating for the book.

Firts things first,then... As it's a space opera, there are many strange names of people and places, and while that wouldn't be a problem if I read the book, they made me confused while listening - my brain just culdn't make the instant connections between the names and their bearers. It's not a fault of the book as such, of course, but a minor discomfort for me as a listener.
The bigger problem, though, is the lack of my emotional connection to Kia throughout at least half of the book - I just couldn't feel as much sympathy for her as I think I should have... The reason is that there are so many things happening to her in a very short span of time that there's no room for deeper emotional development of her character; I mean, we are told she wants revenge, we are told she rebels against what happens to her but at the same time she actually accepts whatever comes her way without much internal (or external) struggle... It gets better in the second half, but I still think her reactions are too constraint, too "robotic" somehow...

That said, I have to point out all the good elements of the book, too, and there are quite a few:) I like the writing style of Ms Kearney. The plot is fast-paced, with a few really well done action scenes. The characters are in general colourful, with unique persoanality traits and mannerisms of speech and behaviour which make them quite an interesting bunch. The world building is also good; though the book lacks detailed descriptions, there are hints here and there which allow us to understand what the world looks like and how things work. And there's a really good twist at the end of this part of the series to make you want to continue with it:)

As for the interpretation by Ms West, I think she is a decent narrator; she does the voices well enough and lets the story flow taking the back seat herself, not overacting or being too impartial. However, I'd like her to read a bit faster - I admit I sped it up a bit:)

DISCLAIMER: I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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Me against the galaxy

I was given this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

The MC loses everything and rages against the galaxy. She’s emotionally driven, which I’ve, and her motivations and decisions make sense within her logic, even if flawed. I would not recommend listening to this before bed, because the author crams a lot of intensity into a relatively short book. Great job! It’s also at least mostly kid safe, so you can listen in the car or on speaker, which is nice.

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Such a Good story, ready for next in series!!!

Good Story, Excellent Narrator, good character building. I have read this author before and throughly enjoyed her work but this is the best yet!!

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More than what I expected

This is the fourth book I’ve read/listened to by this author and I would listen to another. This book was different than her Adept Solutions Series (which was enjoyable and entertaining)in that I found this book to have more depth. I enjoyed the direction this book took. Some parts had me questioning if I really knew what certain people’s motivations were- it was nice not to be certain if I’d figured it out. This book had some serious and also lighthearted parts.
Kia is a strong character. I enjoyed her interactions with others. Even if the situation was dire she often had a flippant attitude which added some humour- especially when it came to her interactions with the emperors’s son.

This is the second book I’ve listened to by this narrator ( April Renée West ) and I would listen to another. She did well adding a tone to the story and Kia’s personality. Her voices are somewhat similar in tone and accent, yet each character had a distinguishable one. This was a very pleasant listen.

There are no explicit sex scenes, excessive violence or swearing.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and voluntarily left this unbiased review.
Please feel free to comment on whether you found my review helpful.

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A Sci-Fi Adventure

This Sci-Fi adventure will grab you from the beginning and not let go till the end. I'm not a big Sci-Fi listener but this book was a great listen. It's well written and the characters nicely developed. The story has plenty of action, adventure, and some suspense which Teagan Kearney weaves together wonderfully giving the listener four hours of great entertainment. The narration was lacking to me. I felt the voices were okay but not that distinctive and the emotions weren't as apparent as they could be. It didn't stop me from listening to the end but I think a better narration would have this book a five star all the way. Overall, if you enjoy Sci-Fi stories then you should give this a try.

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • TU
  • 03-15-19

really enjoyed this one

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

I really quite enjoyed this book. It is full of action and has a great female main character. Definitely worth checking out if you like a good sci fi story with good narration.

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  • Norma Miles
  • 09-18-19

You are stronger than you know.

Stars and Ashes is the first episode of a new science fiction series.both setting the scene and introducing the main protagonists. Kia, beloved daughter of the elected leader of a planet, skilled in a form of combination martial arts and dance, is taken prisoner and watches her father executed and learns of the death of the rest of her family. Grief stricken and determined to exact revenge, she chooses life rather than an instant death in order to achieve her future purpose, and the relatively pampered life she has known up until that time is replaced by that of a slave.

The book is written simply and is an easy read despite the similarity of some of the unusual names. The world building is very scantily projected and the attempt to fully characterise the cast is only partly successful: for this reader, at least, Kia herself fails to convince despite her constant internal debate about the killing of the heir to the throne of the invading empire and her reactions after meeting him. Plus this evil, brutal regime might be harsh but by no means seems to be the evil empire initially implied. It simply does not feel right. Narrator Apryl Renee West has a pleasant sounding voice and she reads well with apparent understanding. She is definitely a suitable Kia, but her attempted ma!e voices were unconvincing even if they were slightly differentiated. However, the main distraction of her performance came from her constant breathlessness, near gasps sounding as she noisily inhaled between phrases: invasive and irritating.

I was fortunate in being freely gifted a complimentary copy of Stars and Ashes by the rights holder after I had requested it via Audiobook Boom. Thank you. It was an enjoyable Y.A. story so far which might well continue to become an excellent series. It already has set out the basis for this with a somewhat emotionally confused but hard fighting leading lady, an evil empire whose second in control is a bit of a charming pussy cat even if he is an even bigger, better fighter than everyone else (and nano enhanced) and the possibility of a surviving brother to Kia lurking somewhere in the background. Secrets still to be uncovered, no doubt. Please note that this episode ends with a semi cliff hanger and the reader will be investing more time than just this book to fully appreciate the story. A recommended low action S.F.thriller for the younger reader but, although I enjoyed this part, I very much doubt that I will personally continue further

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  • Chris Christo
  • 03-02-19

Girl Power!

I am not normally a fan of fantasy/sci-fi type books because I find the other worlds hard to follow (maybe I need a better imagination) but I enjoyed the story of a woman battling an empire alone. I enjoyed the strong female character and the exciting scenes. I was worried for her several times. This would be a great listen for anyone from young adults to middle aged women like me that grew up with Princess Leia and Wonder Woman. The narrator has a soft soothing voice that carries the story perfectly. She is a pleasure to listen to. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series!

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  • Fleetwoodboy
  • 02-20-19

The only way is up

Surprisingly I found this book refreshing and a great page turner. I’d been disappointed in the last few books I’ve listened to in this genre but I’ve followed Teagan for a few years now and she has never disappointed and this book didn’t either. Highly recommended for a good listen