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Skies of Steel: The Ether Chronicles Mass Market Paperback – 6 Nov 2012

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 277 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books (6 Nov. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062218158
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062218155
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 2.1 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,146,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Zoe Archer is an award-winning romance author who thinks there's nothing sexier than a man in tall boots and a waistcoat. As a child, she never dreamed about being the rescued princess, but wanted to kick butt right beside the hero. She now applies her master's degrees in Literature and Fiction to creating butt-kicking heroines and heroes in tall boots. Her BLADES OF THE ROSE series--featuring dashing men and fearless women--will be released Fall 2010. Zoe and her husband live in Los Angeles.

Please visit her on the Web at

Product Description

In the world of The Ether Chronicles, the Mechanical War rages on, and appearances are almost always deceiving . . . The prim professor Daphne Carlisle may be a scholar, but she's far more comfort-able out in the field than lost in a stack of books. Still, when her parents are kidnapped by a notorious warlord, she knows she'll need more than quick thinking if she is to reach them in time. Daphne's only hope for getting across enemy territory is an airship powered and navigated by Mikhail Denisov, a rogue Man O' War who is as seductive as he is untrustworthy. The jaded mercenary Mikhail will do anything for the right price, and he's certain he has this mission--and Daphne--figured out: a simple job and a beautiful but sheltered Englishwoman. But as they traverse the skies above the Mediterranean and Arabia, Mikhail learns the fight ahead is anything but simple, and his lovely passenger is not entirely what she seems. The only thing Mikhail is certain of is their shared desire--both unexpected and dangerous.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This story had a lot of potential but it was just OK. I wanted to start this series but wasn't sure where to start as none of the synopsis particularly grabbed my attention. But then, the male MC in this one has a wicked mohawk so enough said.

The characters were very very serious, too serious for a steampunk novel to be honest. The romance was very instantaneous, which is fair enough, but then it crashed a bit with their very serious feelings towards each other, like respect and appreciate rather than attraction and desire. As a result the dialogue between the two main characters was just too cheesy for my taste specially since they mainly interact with each other and no one else.

It needed a bit more fun and any sort of secondary character would have helped I think. Not that there aren't any other characters in this, there is the "evil warlord" and the "not-so-evil warlady" the "former-friend-now-mortal-enemy" and the "parents" but they all felt like silhouettes and cliches of what could have been characters but were only extras and placeholders.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 18 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
LOVE! 3 Aug. 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Mikhail, oh Mikhail. I love you. Unf. I mean, I was sold the minute I knew this hero had a Mohawk, but everything else about him was amazing as well.

And if you haven't been paying attention, Zoe Archer's heroines have all of my heart. Each one is fiercer than the last, and they make me so damn proud of my fellow women. Daphne is no exception, intelligent and strong in every way. What's even better? Mikhail doesn't do the usual whiny-hero-temper-tantrum at his woman holding her own.

Archer's books inspire and empower me. Every damn one of them.

Now, where is MY rogue Man O' War?!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Hot hero and capable heroine 10 Sept. 2013
By Willread - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I like Zoe Archer`s heroines very much and the heroines are my main reason for buying her books. You know they won`t turn stupid or useless. I also like Zoe Archer`s heroes - mainly because they don`t want stupid and useless women in their lives. On the contrary, they like their women strong and capable.

The hero of Skies of Steel is a Russian Man o War turned rogue. He sports a mohawk and is as big and strong as the Man o Wars are in this series (this book is a stand-alone, by the way - no connection to the other books apart from the steam punk universe being the same). He is tricked into helping the heroine of the book retrieve her parents who have been kidnapped. Since he turned rogue because of a deep betrayal, he takes badly to her tricking him.

This book is a bit more action based (quite a few battles) and a bit more predictable than what I usually prefer but I did like the steam punk universe and I loved the hero and the heroine.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Good steam punk story 8 Jan. 2013
By Fall Into Books - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I am going to be honest. I requested this book from Edelweiss simply because the guy on the cover had a mohawk, and I have a weakness for punk guys. I didn't know anything about this novel when I began reading it, but I was pleasantly surprised. This is a steam punk novel, not punk rock, but Mikhail still puts the punk in steam punk. Skies of Steel had excellent world-building, two great leading characters, and a captivating and action-packed plot. I couldn't put this book down.

Mikhail and Daphne both were terrific main characters. Mikhail had that tortured thing going on, but he wasn't angsty. He was strong and rebellious, but he had a good heart. I completely adored him. Daphne was completely kick ass. She didn't rely on a man for anything, and if it came down to doing what she felt she was supposed to do or giving up everything for a guy? She did what she felt she was supposed to do. I really admired that about her. My one complaint about this book is that the secondary characters were not developed at all. I would have loved to have gotten to know Mikhail's crew better. As it stands, all the secondary characters were simply filler characters, and I didn't like that.

One of the things that totally blew me away was the amount of research Archer put into this book. How she characterized the field of anthropology at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century was spot on. At that time, the field was basically known as salvage anthropology. Daphne stated that she enjoyed documenting cultures before they were crushed under the wheels of modernity, and that was an actual quote from that time period. Of course, we now know that these cultures can sustain the supposed modernity and that the ideas of primitive vs. modern are problematic within themselves. Daphne, being the advanced girl that she is, hints at that by stating that cultures can adapt and change and grow into something even greater. The accuracy regarding this field of study for that specific time period really made the book so much more enjoyable and realistic for me.

The plot was full of action and suspense. I really didn't know if Mikhail and Daphne would both make it out of this alive, or if they'd end up together. Because of that, I was forced to keep reading. I had to know how the story ended! There were a lot of battles and close calls that kept up the feeling of suspense for the whole 100 pages. The other complaint I have is that I wish this book had been longer. The pacing was perfect, and I didn't feel cheated out of anything, but I wanted more of Mikhail and Daphne! They were great.

The romance was kind of sweet and kind of steamy. This wasn't erotica, but there was sex in it (obviously). I liked that the characters got to know each other AND had a mutual attraction. I don't really enjoy books where the characters just screw each others' brains out with no actual feelings other than lust involved. This book had some depth, though, and I liked that.

The word-building was excellent as well. Archer didn't describe too much, so I didn't get bored and irritated with the descriptions, but she shared enough details that I could easily picture the world she created. I love the idea of a "bionic man," and the author explained the side effects of becoming a Man O' War, but she didn't go into depth about the scientific explanation, which I found refreshing. I hate when authors try to make scientific sense of things that aren't scientific, and since I'm no scientist, I don't care how things work as long as they do, haha. Obviously when reading a work of fiction, one must willingly suspend disbelief. That was easily accomplished with this novel due to Archer's excellent research.

Basically, I'd recommend this book to fans of adult romances and fans of steam punk. It's a short, quick, and enjoyable read. You don't want to miss the fantastic world that Archer has created!
Five Stars 7 Aug. 2015
By wilma mcgeath - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
good story
Another Ether Chronicles Winner 26 April 2014
By Cy Seville - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Ether Chronicles short stories are so good, you just want to read all of them. Nicely written with good plotting.
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