Broken Skies is the first book in the Broken Skies series by Theresa Kay. The audiobook is narrated by Andrea Emmes.
Broken Skies is set in our world, 30 years after an apocalyptic event (the Collapse) that ended with 90% of the population. From that surviving 10% women a very low minority; they are considered in some cases as commodities or simply as reproductive wombs.
After the Collapse, aliens (the E’rikon) arrived and settled in the world. They don’t help the humans nor interfere with their lives and until now, they have kept their distance from them.
The heroine of the story is seventeen year-old Jasmine “Jax” Mitchell. She lives along her twin brother, Jace, in a compound in the middle of the forest. They moved there for security reasons after Jax was attacked in the house they used to share while Jace was out hunting. Jax hates living in Bridgelake; she is not the usual feminine girl and wants more from life than what is expected from her in the compound (get promised/married and have babies).
After breaking the rules and leaving the compound to search for Jace Jax witnesses aliens kidnaping him. She tries to go after them, but she is too late. Luckily for her not everything is lost because she finds Lir, an young alien who has been left behind by his ship and who is willing to help her get into the secure city where the E’rikon lives, so she can find Jace, in exchange to help him get there safe and sound. Together they travel discovering secrets about both races and themselves, and despite their misgivings getting closer to each other.
I really liked Jax. She is a strong heroine with a broken core. She knows she is broken due to past traumas; notwithstanding she does whatever is necessary to survive and to fight for what she believes to be right. Jax is also stubborn and determined; sometimes she makes mistakes, but what teenager doesn’t? This only made her feel more real and believable. The story is told from her point of view, so it was easy to see and to feel what she was going through.
I have mixed feelings about Lir. I liked him a lot, but I didn’t like that he was keeping secrets from Jax, although I understand why he did it. I think Theresa Kay did an amazing job with his physical description, because she made him “other”, but at the same time human enough to be attractive to us.
The secondary characters are great, but I have to applaud Theresa Kay for what he did with Jace and Flint. I really was surprised but in the best way possible. I loved them both and can’t wait to see more of them in future books. What was so special about them? No spoilers, you need to listen to this audiobook. *inserts evil laugh*
The story is fast paced and with so many twists and turns that it’s impossible to put down. I was actually quite surprised by how much I liked it. I listened to this audiobook while traveling from Paris to Miami and Theresa Kay’s words and the wonderful narration of Andrea Emmes made the time fly… literally.
Talking about the narration, it’s hard to believe this was Emmes’ first audiobook because her performance is equal or better than many seasoned narrators I have listened to. She gave to every character its own unique voice and accent. They were easy to differentiate with just the tone she used on them. Also her voice is perfect for the characters, she sounds young with the young characters and adult with the adult characters. That something I usually have problems with narrators, especially with the young voices.
After listening to Andrea Emmes I can’t imagine anyone else narrating this book.
I’m looking forward to listen to the second audiobook in this series, Fracture Suns; sadly there is not a release date yet established. I’m also looking forward to listen to other audiobooks narrated by Andrea Emmes.
I recommend Broken Skies to YA dystopian and YA Sci-Fi fans. I also recommend listening to the audiobook because Andrea Emmes really pays homage to the story with her excellent narration.