by Liesel Schwarz
Series: The Chronicles of Light and Shadow #3
Genres: Science Fiction, Steampunk
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Set during the Belle Epoque, Sky Pirates is a thrilling and inventive historical fantasy novel, where the myths and legends of Old Europe live side by side with the wondrous creations of modern scientists and aviators. It's also set in a world haunted by vampires, fairies, and other supernatural creatures. And it mixes a thrill-a-minute page-turning plot with a genuinely moving love story. In Sky Pirates, Elle and Marsh escape to the jungles of Cambodia in search of a sacred temple that holds the key to erasing the barrier between Shadow and Light.
I was a little nervous starting Sky Pirates the third book in Liesel Schwarz’s Chronicles of Light and Shadow. The second book, A Clockwork Heart, left me frustrated, but wow Sky Pirates brought back all of the elements I loved in A Conspiracy of Alchemists. Action packed, with lovable characters this steampunk has us traveling the world, and engaging in battles. The heroine Elle Chance is fantastic. She is kick-ass and determined. I don’t recommend crossing her.
Schwarz weaves steampunk, science fiction and myths into this historical fantasy. Her vivid imagination bring us, fleshed out characters and a world that unfolds in Three-D. Fans of the series will be delighted by the growth in Elle and a resolution to the dire consequences of A Clockwork Heart.
The characters are rich and complex from the loathsome Pierce to the dashing Captain Dashwood. I found myself liking Jack, the incurable schemer and I felt torn as their relationships developed. The relationship between Ella and Dashwood was intense, and interesting. Through it, we see Elle come to terms with her grief, even as she searches for a way to reunite with Marsh. The power of being the Oracle is touched upon as Elle experiments and gains more control. I am anxious to see what powers she will come into as the series progresses. While the current thread is resolved, the battle has only begun.
Sky Pirates take us into the world of air pirates and deep into the jungles as we search for Angkor War a lost temple. Schwarz has a gift for creating new steampunk elements and explaining the worlds of Shadow and Light. She was able to grab my attention from page one and immerse me in the world until I closed the last page. Sky Pirates has the perfect balance of detail and action. In my humble opinion this novel was the strongest to date in the overall series. I am anxious to return to this fascinating world.
Fans of steampunk, adventure, travel and a side dish of romance should add Sky Pirates and the entire Chronicles of Light and Shadow to their bookshelves.