[ from the archive: ] The Liftsal Guardians – Alexandra Moody

A young fighter on a self-set mission to rescue her brother, a tall alien prince who doesn’t want to let her leave; can Sloane fulfill her mission now that she needs to escape from Rhyn first? A scifi romance with lots of fighting scenes.

The Story

Set in a future in which the Earth is overpopulated and yet another world war has broken out, Sloane is an eighteen year old girl who has attended the academy and has been trained in fighting. Her skills are top-notch, she used to be the best of her class, and she is a force to be reckoned with. Together with her father, who is now captain of the spaceship the Explorer, her twin sister Rowena, and her brother Ash, she has ventured into space on a mission to find a new planet to colonize. It is at this point the story starts, because her brother Ash, part of the first team sent down to planet Aeris, has disappeared.

Although Sloane isn’t part of the team to rescue him, she makes herself a part of it. On Aeris she discovers the planet isn’t uninhabited as they had presumed. Against her will she’s taken to Ellysia, inhabited by the Unfaih. Although she is told to be a guest it is instantly clear to her that she isn’t supposed to leave. Not ever again. And that presents a problem because her first mission, above all else, is to find back and rescue her brother Ash. 

Liftsal Guardians

This book is the first in a series. Presented as a Young Adult, Dystopian Future Fantasy, with elements of scifi. The work can be compared to the tales of Veronica Roth, Claudia Gray, and Amie Kaufman.But my associations are more with the Avengers and Norse mythology and the new Star Wars episodes. The prince keeping Sloane a prisoner is a tall, dark-haired and handsome man who is cunning, has no qualms with cuffing her to the bed, and lives in a world of snow. The Liftsal mentioned in the title can be used to cure wounds, but when humans drink it the effects can be far more disastrous, reminding us of the ancient mythology tales about Ambrosia – more so than the golden apples from Norse mythology. 

To the Rescue

The quest of Sloane is self-assigned. She’s driven by her will to safe her brother- a motivation that catalyses most events. Whenever it gets too tough, it is the thought of her sister back in the spaceship that gives her strength. There’s an element of family drama intertwined within the tale. For instance, her sister Rowe has suffered from a great traumatic experience in the past. While Sloane dislikes their father, Rowe seems to adore him. There are many questions and some of them we will see answered in this first book of the series.

Sloane is a strong, self-assured protagonist. An ideal hero for a young adult tale. She is tall, handsome, very strong and the top of the class. However, she doesn’t take orders and seems to have different priorities from everyone else around her.

Keep in mind that everyone on Earth is suffering from another world war and that the Explorer has been sent to find a new home planet. The mission of the Explorer is vital – it can save us all. 

Sloane doesn’t seem to think of this. While those around her want to find a new habitable planet to save their families, Sloane is concerned only about finding her brother – who cares if she knocks a man dead to take his place right? Oops. That the pod she’s flying in with the rescue team crashes because she took the place of one of their pilots – who cares right? That her team is angry at her because people died during the crash – who cares right? She’s the best fighter of her class, they should have taken her along on the mission! Also, when others tell her she can’t go with the team to look for her brother when they’re on Aeris because she’s unreliable – who cares right? Sloane jeopardizes the entire mission to save mankind. Apparently this is okay because we then settle into a long tale that reminds more of a fantasy romance. I have faith that Sloane will find a way that none of the others can, a way to save humanity. But it is something to keep in mind. If you’re not looking for a strong girl stubbornly going against a strong handsome man romance, you should be looking elsewhere.


A proper young adult fantasy series about a strong and fierce heroine, doing what she believes is right, finding out things about herself and who she is while on an alien planet. Most of the time the reader will spend in a land full of snow, of tall and beautiful people who have a lifestyle not very different than our own. The world has some medieval hints to it, taking us back in a fantasy historical setting. And of course there’s the handsome prince who doesn’t want to let Sloane go. Will she succeed in escaping from his clutches? Will she find out what has happened to her brother? Or will she find out a new danger? What are those Brakys? And how can she warn the others back on the ship? If you like strong female protagonists, stories with a focus on families, relationships and exploring oneself to find one’s identity, accompanied by the necessary combat – then this is a story for you. I’m interested to see what will happen in the next book, especially to see how the crew who already landed on Aeris (together with Sloane) will take part in this. A lovely fantasy for young readers, especially fit for these snowy cold days at the end of the year. Haven’t decided on a present yet for Christmas? This might be it.

( 2017, Click here for Alexandra’s personal website

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