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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

What listeners say about Stars & Ashes

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Good story

This is a really good story, quite dark with a twist at the end that I certainly didn't see coming. It has a strong female lead character driven by revenge, a lead male character who you struggle to like. It also leaves some threads unresolved for a sequel. Highly recommended
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review

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An interesting start

I recieved a review copy of this book. The story is solid and the characters interesting. You follow the story from the perspective of the main character and aspects of the universe are introduced gradually as the story progresses. My only criticism is that the book feels quite short finishing just as the first twist is revealed.

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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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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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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

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  • Mandy Buffington
  • 29-03-19

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.

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  • anne-v
  • 20-10-21

Great sci-fi dystopian

What a fun, fast-paced, exciting book. Teagan writes really well in this genre. I enjoyed this book immensely.
It's teen safe, family road-trip safe, but exciting enough that your teen will want to read it. Well-written dystopian is like cake to me. This book is cake.
I'm a fan!
I struggled with the narration a little. It might just be that the narrator needs to invest in better equipment.

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  • Martin Wilsey
  • 25-07-21

A great start

The story is action-packed, has good characters, the plot has direction and twists, and it moves along nicely.

I just wish it was longer!

The narrator was fine but the audio quality lost it a star.

Overall, good stuff. I recommend it,

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  • Bobbi & Tony
  • 23-05-21

Awesome Book

I was given this book for free but this review is all mine. I really enjoyed this book. Loved that it wasn't all about sex. I hate those kinds of books. My heart broke for Kia and everything she goes through. She has a great personality. Which made me feel like I was right there with her, training right along with her. The fact that she wasn't perfect all the time made her feel like a real person. Teagan Kearney sure does know how to describe the scene and being it to life for me. The narrator Apryl Renee West was REALLY good. I enjoyed listening to her. I will be back for the next book in this series.

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  • Jeff M.
  • 15-01-21

Decent plot, half a book

This seems like it's going to be one of those series where the author breaks it up into multiple volumes, but it's really just one book ripped into parts. This wasn't standalone. While the direction the story is heading seems interesting, not a lot happened, and the final scene felt like it was literally cut off in the middle. I'll admit this was a bit triggering to me since it's become a pet peeve of mine over the last few years when authors do this. It's possible to make a cohesive compelling united story spread across multiple volumes while still having each entry in the series be a complete book.

As for the narration, while I felt that the voice she used for the main character was a good fit for her, several of the other ones weren't and it was very difficult to tell when she switched between characters sometimes. Wish I could go higher on the rating but I can't.

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  • Harry
  • 27-12-20

It's not where she's going, but how she gets there

A lot of action getting from one place to another. I especially liked the abbreviated fight scenes. I will be waiting for the rest of the trilogy.

I was given this audiobook by the author for free and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • Gatosqueak
  • 18-12-20

Very enjoyable action, romance, sci-fi

I enjoyed the main female protagonist and her personality. The story wasn't bogged down with romance but had just enough. The premise of The Empire is interesting and there are cultural and character development throughout the story.

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  • Michele
  • 04-10-20

The ending will surprise and delight you!

The story is about a female martial arts instructor whose planet is enslaved by a power-hungry emperor. She accidentally saves the life of the emperor's son. He turns around and saves her life right back. The emperor's son does his best to protect her and eventually has her trained as one of his elite guards. The training process is competitive and reminded me a little of Divergent.

I was immediately drawn into this world and fascinated by Kia, the female protagonist. She faces impossible situation after impossible situation. She is not always brave. She is scared and clumsy sometimes. She strikes me as a normal "good" girl who is thrown into a whirlwind when her home planet is enslaved and her family is separated and/or killed.

I promise that the ending will surprise and delight you! It is absolutely the perfect set-up for more great books (and not a cliff hanger). If you are intrigued, you should be. I will be recommending this book to my 14-year-old daughter. I think she will love it too.

I did not notice any production errors. The narrator did a great job. I didn't even notice the narrator. To me, that is a sign that they have done an amazing job. When I think back on this book, I think of the story not the technical aspects of the audiobook. Great job!

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  • S.R.
  • 15-09-20

Compelling Sci-fi

This is the first book that I have read by Teagan Kearney. She is quite imaginative and good at world building. Her believable characters are complimented with unique personalities, voices, and behaviors. It was easy to make an emotional connection to her characters. The plot is fast paced with plenty of action and adventure. The performance by Apryl Renee West enhanced the written word nicely. I look forward to the next book in this series. I was provided a free review copy of this audio book and am voluntarily leaving this review.

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  • K Knox
  • 07-09-20

Unique story with plenty of action

I really enjoyed this story, but be aware that the story doesn't end in this book. For me, this was a rather unique story which contributed to my enjoyment. The narration is good, but I feel it could have been better. The narrator at times seemed to get a little tired which caused her to just read some of the sections in a flat tone with no acting. However, I think she has great potential, and I do look forward to listening to the next book.