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Take Back the Skies

(Tellus #1)

3.49  ·  Rating details ·  984 ratings  ·  266 reviews
Catherine Hunter is the daughter of a senior government official on the island of Anglya. She’s one of the privileged – she has luxurious clothes, plenty to eat, and is protected from the Collections which have ravaged families throughout the land. But Catherine longs to escape the confines of her life, before her dad can marry her off to a government brat and trap her for ...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published June 3rd 2014 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (first published May 28th 2014)
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Jennifer Ramirez I don't have the slightest clue, the next book is The Almost King. I'm still pissed off at Cat for marrying you know who.…moreI don't have the slightest clue, the next book is The Almost King. I'm still pissed off at Cat for marrying you know who.(less)

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Average rating 3.49  · 
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 ·  984 ratings  ·  266 reviews

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Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
As she turned, he wiped a hand across his forehead, pulled his undershirt off and dropped it to the floor to join his shirt and waistcoat. Cat’s cheeks turned a fiery red upon seeing his bare chest, and she resisted the urge to groan. She’d never been attracted to anyone before; why did it have to start now?
This book is incredibly bad. It not only has a plot driven by extreme predictability and deus ex fucking machina, it also contains a motherfucking love triangle, not to mention the most g
Jan 31, 2014 marked it as watch-list
Shelves: 2010s-release
A sci-fi book written by someone named Lucy Saxon?

Mark me down as "suspicious".

Faye, la Patata
I am so sorry but I just couldn't do it. I've been trying to read this for days, and I either end up falling asleep or typing raging updates.

DNF at 50%

As Cait said in her review, I may have enjoyed this if I were younger. The writing style is kind of young and needs a lot of polishing. We're always being told of this and that, what was Cat feeling in such a blunt way, that I felt super disconnected. More showing than telling, please! I need a more emotional attachment to Cat, and this unfortuna
Also posted at Addicted2Heroines

So 2 stars, huh?
Yeah, it was pretty bad.
Hear me out, 'cause I think this is going to be an author to watch.
I was probably a hundred pages into this thing before it started to go sideways. Up to that point, I actually thought this was going to be at least a 4 star book.
The descriptions of Cat, her life, and the world she lived in were all really interesting.
Catherine is a 14 year old girl who lives a life of privilege because her father is a government official
When a bunch of awesome (and admittedly not-so-awesome) tropes are thrown together into one giant hodgepodge of a novel, the result could be pretty dangerous; at worst, the novel could appear hastily written, or that it's trying too hard to appeal to everyone, thereby doing the opposite. At best, when the tropes are established well, it makes for a truly fun and addicting read. The latter is mostly true for Lucy Saxon's engaging debut, Take Back the Skies. In it, some of my favorite tropes are i ...more
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

DNF around halfway

There's something really exciting about reading a book that was written by a teenager. I mean, how awesome is that? A nineteen year old wrote a book at the age of sixteen got her book published. While I ended up DNFing this book, it's still amazing to think of how Lucy Saxon managed to do this.

I hadn't really heard of this book until late May where all the hype started to brew, and I think that this is a good example where hype takes a turn
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
This review originally appeared on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!

If you enjoy being told one very repetitive message throughout a book, only to have the heroine backflip and go against everything she believes in the last few pages, then go ahead and pick up this book.

For everyone else however, you have been warned.

Take Back the Skies has a very feminist message throughout, with the heroine Cat escaping from her oppressive father so she won’t need to sit around in dresses and be
Jessica (The Psychotic Nerd)
This and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd

I feel so awkward.
The average rating for this book on Goodreads is 3.27.
Almost every review I see for this book is a negative review.
But I absolutely loved this book.
When I was reading this book, I was very confused by this. I kept seeing this amazing and imaginative book, while a majority of people would see the opposite. Sometimes, when this happens, a seed of doubt plants in my brain and I begin thinking that the book was
I'm sorry, I'm just not feeling this at all. Back on hold it goes.

The character is MILES ABOVE THE GROUND IN A SKY SHIP, and yet I am bored. I feel no emotions for anything in this book, and I have completely run out of fucks to give for now.
Nasty Lady MJ
Jun 01, 2014 rated it did not like it
To see full review click on one of the following links:

My Blog


This book should’ve never been published.

Don’t get me wrong, I think Lucy Saxon (that has to be a pen-name) is very talented for her age, but she’s not ready for pub time (yet).

Though to her credit, she’s a bit more ready than Alexandra Adornetto. But that’s really not a comment if you think about just how bad Halo was.

The premises of Take Back the Skies has a lot going for it.

I always do love the gender bending trope. And sk
Jerri-kay Walthew
May 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I've seen it written here that Take Back The Skies is a breath of fresh air, and really, it is.

A familiar yet 'newer' style of writing which you'll see in a lot of books written by younger authors. Descriptive and in-depth but yet with a nice light-hearted tone of not getting bogged down in wording and useless story line. There are no 'childish' traits in this book; you can't tell the author's age just by reading it; although let's not ignore the fact Saxon wrote this when she
May 17, 2014 rated it did not like it
Firstly, thanks to Bloomsbury Australia for this ARC.

Review originally posted at Fiction in Fiction in Fiction

I would like to point out that I really admire Lucy Saxon for writing a book at such a young age. She’s got a lot of potential and talent. To get a book published at only 19 is a wonderful achievement and I commend her on that.

When I received Take Back the Skies at the beginning of March I actually wasn’t planning on reading it. However, as the release day draws closer the hype kept buil
Brea Johnson
May 12, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review-copy
I have to come right out and say it, I was fairly disappointed in this book. It had all the promise and possibilities of something amazing and it didn’t deliver. I was captured at the beginning. It had such an interesting world to play with, with a spirited MC. But from halfway I just kept facing issues and problems that got in the way of my enjoyment.

(SIDE) This story is more suitable for the younger side of YA. I didn’t have a problem with this, I quite like that younger, childish adventure st
Chelsea Herondale
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-for-review
Take back the skies by Lucy Saxon

Take back the skies takes place in a future world where the royal family disappeared and the government took control. Catherine Hunter is the daughter to a very important government man. She is privileged, has nice clothes and is safe. Catherine however, is not happy and escapes before her dad can marry her off to a government brat. Catherine becomes Cat and the story follows her journey as she learns that not everything is how it seems.

This book had a really str
Ash ♡
Oct 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
took way too long to read this book... also disappointing ending
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Actual Rating: 2.5 stars

After Blythe (Finding Bliss in Books) pitched Take Back the Skies to me as sort of She’s the Man meets Firefly, obviously I HAD to have it. What’s funny is Blythe thought I wouldn’t like the romance but would enjoy everything else, but my issues were more with the writing than the romance. I did find Take Back the Skies engaging and a pleasantly quick read, but I also think it would have benefited from different marketing and some serious tightening of the writing. Saxon’
May 10, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: not-finished
I began this on the plane to LA - took too long in the beginning so I wasn't enjoying it. Got about halfway and I fell asleep. And then I needed to offload something from my bag so I left the proof on a terminal chair at LAX.

To be frank, I do not believe this book is ready to be published. More polishing, an increase in the main character's age, and a somewhat more mature writing style would have me more interested, but unfortunately it wasn't the case.

At least someone at LAX may have picked it
A copy of this novel was provided by Bloomsbury Australia in exchange an honest review.

Oh, boy. I’m going to write this review on a kind of timeline, because I think that would best describe my feelings and how they changed throughout the course of this novel.

I received this book from the lovely people at Bloomsbury. I hadn’t heard of it, but as soon as I read the blurb, I was keen. I love steampunk and I love fantasy, and the author was a teenager (which is awesome).

Then I started to see some r
Adam Webling
Oct 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Rating: 3.5

Robots, airships and a corrupt government. Lucy Saxon’s debut sci-fi novel packs in a lot of adventure, mystery and dark mechanics.

So, as you’ve probably already guessed, Take Back The Skies has a cool concept. In a dystopian world where ‘collection days’ taken teenagers away from their families to fight in a war, Catherine Hunter runs away from her awful (and I mean awful) father and escapes her city on an airship. Here she meets a crew that become her new family, including Fox, a bo
Mar 11, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-fantasy, ebook, kindle
I found some of the characters and motivations to be simply implausible. You have a band of smugglers who are doing nothing to find the missing children, and all of the sudden just because a stowaway that they have known for less than a month says they need to go on a mission, they agree to her plan? Also, two bad guys met the same end in the exact same way. I really feel that this could have been a great read had there been more sculpting involved in the editorial process. The writing was good, ...more
Dark Faerie Tales
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: Though there were plenty of flaws, I found this novel enjoyable all the same.

Opening Sentence: Rain fell lazily from charcoal-coloured clouds as Catherine Hunter sprinted through darkening streets, her long hair tied in a tight braid and tucked beneath a black knit cap.

The Review:

Catherine is a privileged girl with a government father. She has managed to escape the Collections in her social status, the days that children are stolen away from the
Catherine Hunter has lived her life in luxury. Fine clothes, exotic cuisine and the best of what life has to offer. But when her father promises her hand in marriage to the son of a business colleague, the fifteen-year-old decides it is time to take matters into her own hands. No more being the trophy daughter of her government official father – Catherine would rather be homeless and free rather than the privileged daughter living in gilded cage.

And so Catherine Hunter becomes Cat, a homeless bo
Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
3.5 Stars
After seeing the early reviews, I was skeptical whether I would enjoy Take Back the Skies, but I really enjoyed it. It was a fusion of dystopian, science fiction and romance, and apart from the appearance of of the Skyships, I was wondering where the steam punk aspect was. The storyline is seen through the eyes of Catherine, who takes on the new persona of Cat when she leaves home for a life on the run. Born in an era where women are obedient and
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
This is one of those stories that has so much potential and so much promise. One where the world is just as much fascinating as it is confusing.

It is steampunk and fantasy and almost dystopian with an old world/modern feel to it all rolled into one. Almost as if the author liked them all and just couldn't quite decide which genre to write in.

The world was fascinating where the rich are highly separated from the poor and underprivileged. Where ships sail the sky and droids serve households. Yet
*stares at the title*
*thinks for a while*
*looks at the title again*
*thinks some more*
Nope. I still don't get it. I don't understand why the book is called Take Back the Skies. Did the characters fly around in the Stormdancer and try and "take back" the territory of the sky from some sort of enemy? Not really. I do believe most of the action side of things were done on land. Except one battle at the end. Which was still not a "taking back" of the skies. Eh, let's just move on.

The world building w
I was so excited to read Take back the skies so its extra saddening that I was disappointed by this book. It really was the story that saved it for me, had the book gone through a couple more rounds of edits to better polish up the writing, it could have been a brilliant novel. But unfortunately it came off glaringly obvious that this was someone's first attempt at writing a book, all the characters spoke exactly the same and overuse of the words 'murmured' and 'queried' drove me to insanity, so ...more
May 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this novel and felt anxious the entire time I was reading it because I had to know what would happen next.

Catherine Hunter is the daughter of a very important member of the Anglyan government. She has lived a life of luxury and has never wanted for anything. Her father however, is not a nice man by any means. He married her mother only to inherit her families fortune and once her mother began to get sick, rumors spread of her fathers infidelity. Now Cat is to be married to the
Feb 06, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I requested this from NetGalley because it sounded interesting and the author is only 18, and once I started reading, I found it hard to stop. Cat is an instantly relatable heroine, and although the story follows the classic plot of a rich girl running away to sea (or in this case, sky) dressed as a boy, the steampunk world that Lucy Saxon creates makes it fun and fresh.

Her world-building is great – you can really feel the streets of Anglya and the skyship Stormdancer, where you quickly get to
Hannah (Vamp of Savannah)
May 05, 2014 rated it did not like it
Received an ARC of this book from the publishing house for review and possible purchase.
***possible spoiler alerts***
It seems like this one had all the right ideas, but the story itself fell flat. First off the book is labeled as a YA romance. This is a little disconcerting considering the heroine is only 14 years old-turning 15 towards the end. Not to spoil this one straight out, but there are things that occur that are WAY above Cat's pay-grade and I was left thinking:

The elements in the book
Dec 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Cat is such a strong main character, and I really loved reading her story. She runs away from home; she escapes from her abusive father and sick mother. She doesn’t want to leave her mom, but her mom tells her to run fast and far. So she does. She finds a new life and pretends to be a boy for a while so she’s not underestimated. Gosh she’s so cool. Then there’s Fox...
Read more here!
Aubrey Joy
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Lucy Saxon is 26 and lives in Hertfordshire with her parents. She describes herself as a cosplayer, con-goer, book-lover and all-round nerdgirl.

Lucy wrote her first novel, Take Back the Skies, at the age of sixteen, finding a home for it with Bloomsbury at seventeen, and is now working on the rest of the series.

When not writing, Lucy spends most of her time on the internet, reading books and sla

Other books in the series

Tellus (3 books)
  • The Almost King (Tellus, #2)
  • The City Bleeds Gold (Tellus #3)

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Let's face it: Being cooped up inside during the pandemic has left a lot of us searching for a sense of connection with one another. Memoirs...
26 likes · 5 comments
“That's another one hooked,' she remarked. 'You'll never stay on land for longer than a week from now on.' - Alice, to Cat” 1 likes
“My name is Catherine Elizabeth Hunter,' Cat declared loudly, staring Fox dead in the eye. 'And I ran away from home because my father is an arrogant git with delusions of grandeur and plans to betroth to some brutish boy I can't stand.” 1 likes
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