"In the time after The Black, human survivors of the Southern Claw Alliance clash with vampire legions of the Ebon Cities in a constant war for survival. Earth as we know it has been forever damaged by an arcane storm that fused our world with distant realms of madness and terror. Things that once existed only in our nightmares stalk the earth.
Now, humanity is threatened by one of its own.
Eric Cross, an enlisted warlock in the Southern Claw military, is part of an elite team of soldiers and mages in pursuit of a woman known as Red -- a witch whose stolen knowledge threatens the future of the human race. The members of Viper Squad will traverse haunted forests and blighted tundra in their search for the traitor, a journey that ultimately leads them to the necropolis of Koth.
There, in that haven of renegade undead, Cross will discover the dark origins of magic, and the true meaning of sacrifice...
Experience a dark and deadly new world in the debut novel of the "Blood Skies" series from author Steven Montano."
I found Blood Skies to be very good.
As I'm an avid reader of vampire books it's really nice to read a book which doesn't describe vampires in such a way that they have become romanticised. To me vampires should be creatures that scare you or at least creep you out. Steven Montano certainly portrays the vampires to be the dark, blood sucking monsters that I think they should be.
Steven doesn't scrimp on the bloodshed and gore either: "Three corpses lay in unrecognizable heaps on the ground, their bodies perforated head to toe by the rusty weapons. Shreds of clothing clung to their decimated bodies. Bloody messes of hair and skin had spread like grisly jam." & "Their flesh was rotten and leathery, and they bore gaping holes in their bodies through which he saw black worms swimming in their veins in place of blood."
The description of Unicorns that Steven uses has certainly changed my view of them from the cute white lovable animals from my childhood to some thing a little more sinister and creepy: "The unicorns emerge from the silver fog like a chain of nightmares. Their skin is black and coarse, and thick dark blood oozes from their nostrils and hooves. Their eyes are white and their horns are jagged and covered in scratches. Their teeth are fanged."
There are some points in the book where I actually felt sorry for the main character Cross, the best instances of this without becoming a spoiler would be Chapter 11 and Chapter 23.
I would definitely recommend this to anyone who loves fantasy and vampires, but I do mean Vampires not soft, lovable vampires!
My overall rating of this book is 4! Lets see how book 2 does...