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1. Fortress of Eagles
2. Fortress of Owls
3. Deceiver: Foreigner #11
4. Conspirator: (Foreigner #10)
5. Fortress of Dragons
6. Cyteen
7. Deliverer (Foreigner)
8. Fortress in the Eye of Time
9. Goblin Mirror
10. Pretender (Foreigner Universe)
11. The Dreaming Tree
12. Pride of Chanur
13. The Collected Short Fiction of
14. The Green Gods
15. Betrayer: Foreigner #12
16. Conspirator: Foreigner #10
17. Destroyer (Foreigner Universe)
18. Downbelow Station: The Company
19. The Chanur Saga
20. Explorer (Foreigner Universe)

1. Fortress of Eagles
by C. J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 496 Pages (1999-01-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$1.07
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 006105710X
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Child of Wizardry

Tristen is both more and less than a man. A summoning, a shaping, he was brought to life by a wizard, to serve a king yet to be crowned.

Now the wizard is dead: a united Ylesuin, and a peace this land has never known. Cefwyn needs his only friend, this young man of mysterious origins who is more brother than vassal. He relies on Tristen, and trusts him though he knows not why, as he plans the war that will bring his dream to pass...or bring ruin upon them all.

The eagerly awaited sequel to her acclaimed Fortress in the Eye of Time, C.J. Cherryh's newest high fantasy triumph is an epic saga of destiny and intrigue in a magical world as wondrous, and as real, as our own.Amazon.com Review
In Fortress in the Eye of Time, the wizard Mauryl Gestaurien summoned his greatest spell and created Tristen, the gray-eyed youth with strange powers. Mauryl's death sends the innocent Tristen out into the world, where he is befriended by Prince Cefwyn, heir to the Marhanen throne. Tristen, armed with a magic sword bearing the words "Truth" on one side and "Illusion" on the other, rides into battle for Cefwyn against the Shadow spawned by Hasufin, Mauryl's greatest enemy. In this sequel, Cefwyn is now king, and he has two intentions: to marry Ninévrisë, the beautiful Lady Regent of Elwynor, and to reunite Ylesuin, the land known in its former glory as Galasien. But even as his wedding approaches, his dreams grow more and more unattainable. His barons want to control him, and they fear Tristen's powers. At Cefwyn's urging, Tristen is lying low to protect himself, hiding his powers and his sword. As war inevitably draws nearer, Cefwyn knows he must not be forced to choose between his friend and his bride. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (20)

3-0 out of 5 stars YAWN
I attacked Fortress of Eagles with such high hopes after finishing the interesting, moving Fortress in the Eye of Time.Phoey on C.J. for letting me down.I kept expecting it to finally pick up, for something to finally happen.It never did.Oh, there's a bit of political maneuvering if you like that sort of thing.But that's not what I approach a fantasy book for and I imagine no one else does either.

The character development was both too little and too much.Far too much time developing the characters exactly the way they developed in the first book.Nothing changed, no one changed, the relationships and characters were static from the last page of Eye of Time to the last page of Eagles.The developing characters and relationships being the best part of Eye of Time, 500 more pages of exactly the same being the sum total of Eagles was tiresome.I came away from it feeling like I could have easily skipped Eagles entirely and have picked right up with the third book without missing a thing.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not exactly sorry I read it, thus the three stars.I didn't mind wasting a little time to bridge the (small) gap between books one and three.If you've started the series, you could do worse than pick this one up too.

5-0 out of 5 stars Lord Sihhe of Amefel
Fortress of Eagles (1998) is the second fantasy novel in the Fortress series, following Fortress in the Eye of Time.In the previous volume, Cefwyn, Ninevrise and Tristen led an army from the Southern provinces against the Elwynim rebels in Amefel.During the slow march, Tristen finally discovered how to read the book given him by Mauryl Gestaurien and learned something of the nature of the gray space.

As the Elwynim rebels under Aseyneddin ambushed the Ylesuin column at Lewenbrook, a great Shadow assaulted the vanguard.Tristen rode directly into the light at the center of this Shadow, carrying the magic blade he had created, and slashed the spirit of Hasufin Heltain.Defeated, yet still not dead, Hasufin withdrew from the battlefield.Afterward, Uwen called back Tristen from the gray space and they rejoined the survivors.

In this novel, Cefwin returns to Guelessar with Ninevrise and Tristen.The Guelenfolk who had been at Lewenbrook bring back strange tales of sorcery directed against their king.Of course, the Northern Barons hadn't been there, so they disbelieve the talk of magical forces, but they hear enough about Tristen to fear him.

The Quinalt priests are upset at having a Sihhe Lord among them.The Quinalt Patriarch complains that Tristen is using magic to have the pigeons make a mess on his portico.Then someone introduces a Sihhe coin in the harvest offering and lightning blasts a hole in the roof of the Quinaltine.The Patriarch comes to Cefwyn to complain of sorcery.

Cefwyn becomes exceedingly angry with the Quinalt Patriarch and forcibly reminds the priest of his grandfather's attitude toward the Quinalt Hierarchy.The Patriarch, who is a political priest, gains a healthy fear of the rage of his King, but his priests defy him to force a confrontation.So Cefwyn invests Tristen with the Duchy of Amefel and sends him back to Henas'amef.Emuin decides to return to Amefel with Tristen.

In this story, Tristen feels the need to travel quickly to his duchy.When the farrier wagon breaks down, Tristen decides to leave the wagons to travel at their own pace and rides ahead with his Dragon Guard in Ivanim style, each with only a horse and a remount.They reach Henas'amef in two days, only to find that an Amefin earl has taken over part of the Zeide.

The Guelen Guard under the Viceroy has occupied another part of the Zeide containing the spring and food stores.Yet the rebels are holding the King's Herald.Tristen has his men declare his identity and estate and, when the rebels fail to respond, leads the attack over the wall against the rebels.Tristen drives them back through the Zeide and out the eastern side until the rebels are surrounded by his men and finally surrender.

The Lord Viceroy is a hindrance from the moment Tristen enters the fortress.After he orders his Guard to kill the Amefin prisoners, Tristen banishes the Viceroy from the province.When he takes Liss, Uwen's newly purchased mount, Tristen reaches through the gray space and wills Liss to buck off the Viceroy and to come back to the Zeide.The horse returns with some interesting things in the saddlebags, including a message that Tristen forwards to Idrys to show the King.

This story shows the further development of Tristen as a leader of men as well as a user of magic.Moreover, it shows more about the plans that Tristen and his friends have disrupted.And then there is the puzzling murder in the Zeide archives;just what had been removed from the wall cavity and burned?

The jacket illustration puzzles me.Obviously the characters portrayed therein are Cefwyn, Ninevrise and Tristen, but these three did not ride together in this novel.The horse armor would seem more appropriate to the previous volume, but Tristen was not the Duke of Amelfin at that time nor would he be carrying the Amelfel standard.Artists!

Once again, the author uses her almost unique style of plot development to lend suspense to this story.Her style makes every story a mystery, with each new incident coming as a surprise to the characters and readers.While the plot itself is not unique, the evolution of the plotlines is most unusual.And this story is not yet complete!

Highly recommended for Cherryh fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of high magic, feudal intrigue and magical Unfolding.

-Arthur W. Jordin

4-0 out of 5 stars The Fortress series
I enjoyed the book and the series.One central character "Tristan" is unique in that he has just been brought into the world by wizardly actions, and his innocence and curiousity is neat.He has a job to do and as his pastlife knowledge unfolds to him he strives, along with his friend the king, to steer an effective course through increasing challenges.Unlike the Chauner series which it more seat of the pants action this series deals some with larger questions the characters have to make in regard to their relationships to each other and about how to carry out their offices as regents of their society.

4-0 out of 5 stars It's Not Pulp.
I picked up this book on the day of the WTC attacks. I needed some pulp fantasy to put me to sleep, or else I was going to have nightmares. Instead, what I found was a well drawn plot, with complex characters. Cherryh definitely did a good job of drawing me into her world, and helping me to forget about mine. The author certainly seems to be going for more than quick dollars in this novel, and her blurring of the lines between good and evil is quite a refreshing change. It's good escapism, and a worthwhile read for any fantasy fan.

3-0 out of 5 stars Least memorable of the four, but essential to the whole.
I think the title says it all.Definitely a second-in-a-series, but very essential to the continuation of the rest.Lots of small details and intricate innuendos.A quick read though to get to the third book. ... Read more

2. Fortress of Owls
by C. J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 560 Pages (2000-03-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$0.01
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061020087
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

"I Dreamed of Owl. That Means Wizardry is Near."

Tristen is a weapon in an ancient war between wizardry and sorcery. He is a summoning and a shaping, brought to life by a wizard. And his sword is a weapon as well. Its keen blade, marked Illusion on one side and Truth on the other, once helped Tristen win the throne of Ylesuin for the young king Cefwyn, gaining Tristen the stewardship of the brave country of Amefel.

Tristen's rule in Amefel is blessed with two extraordinary friends: one a stalwart and simple warrior, the other a young rebel with royal blood. But the scarlet banners of war are unfolding again, and far more than a kingdom is at stake. Now Tristen must take up the sword--as well as the SihhË magic he has forsworn. He is destiny's own, created a combatant in a far older and more fearsome conflict than any ever imagined by mere mortal man. And he is about to do battle once more. . . .

Rich with magic, intrigue, and adventure, this high fantasy series from the acclaimed C. J. Cherryh brings to life an enchanting world as real as, yet far more wondrous, than our own.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (29)

5-0 out of 5 stars FORTRESS OF THE OWLS

3-0 out of 5 stars The missing link
I realised there was a gap in my collection - this has fillled it very well

2-0 out of 5 stars The series is getting worse
Truthfully, Owls was a bit more interesting than Eagles, but then, it could hardly help but be.I persevered through 400 pages of Eagles because I'd loved Fortress in the Eye of Time so much.Surely Owls would be the good strong cup of coffee this series needed.It wasn't.Owls was a somewhat faster and had a little more action than Eagles.It probably would have merited a higher rating from me if it hadn't followed the yawn-fest that was Eagles.Eagles and Owls could easily have been combined into one smaller book than either is separately, and with no loss to the continuing story.So disappointing.

5-0 out of 5 stars Lord Sihhe Wishes the Weather
Fortress of Owls (1999) is the third fantasy novel of the Fortress series, following Fortress of Eagles.In the previous volume, Tristen took Crissand's oath as Earl of Meiden and banished Cuthan of Bryn from Amefel.Emuin finally arrived at the Zeide a week later.

In Guelesfort, Brugan -- heir of Ryssand -- dared to accuse Ninevrise of infidelity and Cevulirn challenged him.After Brugan was slain in a fair fight, the Murandys guards came forward to arrest Cevulirn, but King Cefwyn offered to take the life of anyone who intervened.Still, Cefwyn had to send Cevulirn back to Ivanor for his own safety.

In this novel, Tristen visits Master Emuin in his tower quarters and finds the stairs crowded with an overflow of basket and bundles.Inside, the shutters are open to let in the light, but the wind, snow and cold also come through the windows.Tristen closes the shutters and sends Tassand to light the fire, set the candles and rearrange the furnishings.

Afterward, Tristen joins Uwen for a ride with Earl Crissand.He finds the horse yard filled with carts loading supplies to take to the river camp.Then Crissand arrives with a much larger guard force.After some confusion, Tristen and his bodyguards mount up and ride off through the town.The commoners joyfully shout "Lord Sihhe" as usual;despite the offense to the Guelenfolk (or maybe because of it), his Amefin just can't be convinced to mute their cheers.

The party takes the South Road to Padys Springs, which Tristen realizes had once been called Bathurys.As they talk about common things, Crissand learns that such things are not ordinary to Tristen.Since his personal memories only extended back to the past spring, many things have not yet been experienced.Sheep, for example, is a new and interesting subject to Tristen.

At Padys Springs, they turn off onto the road to Levey.As they pass the old shrine, a fierce gust of wind blows across the column.Then an old woman appears by the stones.Crissand doesn't know her, but Tristen and Uwen recognize her as Auld Syes.The Shadow addresses them as the Lord of Amafel and the aetheling and states that their road lies south, then she tells Tristen to find and feed her sparrows.Finally, she dares Tristen to invite her into his home and he welcomes her.

As they ride south, the party struggles through a sudden storm of snow and ice until they meet Cevulirn and his Ivanim guards.After turning back toward Henas'amef, the weather turns warm.Later, Tristan calls a council of Amefin nobles and has Cevulirn tell them of events in the Guelemara court.They discuss the situation in Elwynor, but decide not to ride north quite yet.Instead, Tristen sends Cevulirn back south to invite the Southron lords to the Midwinter festival in Henas'amef.

In this story, Tristen discovers that the sparrows are armed Elwynim refugees, whom he sends to Althalen.Much has happened, so he sends Sergeant Gedd to Idrys with messages.On his return to Amafel, Gedd is followed by unknown persons and has to walk to Henas'amef on back roads.When he finally returns, Tristen readily perceives that his messengers are being intercepted and he resolves to send only the most urgent messages to Guelessar.

In Guelemara, Cefwyn arranges the marriage of Luriel of Murandys to Rusyn of Panys.After their own marriage, Cefwyn and Ninevrise welcome Luriel back to the court.Afterward, Rusyn invites Luriel to dance.The betrothal soon follows and Luriel joins Ninevrise's court in the preparation of her wedding finery.

This story relates the attempts of Tristen to control the weather.He learns many things from these trials, including the dangers of turning the weather too warm with snow on the ground.Luckily, the snowmelt doesn't wash out any bridges and the lower fields soon dry.Moreover, Tristen finds that something else is countering his wishes.

Highly recommended for Cherryh fans and anyone else who enjoys tales of high magic, feudal plotting and Royal lovers.

-Arthur W. Jordin

4-0 out of 5 stars Political intrigues abound...
Book three of this series picks up the threads of the lives of Tristan and Cefwyn. Tristan, magical Shaping of Wizard Mauryl, has been appointed Lord of Amefel and sent away from his friend and liege, King Cefwyn, for his own good and for the good of the kingdom.

He has taken up the reins of ruling Amefel, and having banished and otherwise dealt with traitors and unreliable people, he faces new problems. Not the least of which are the civil war in the lands to the West, and people insisting he is the fulfillment of the prophecy of the return of a Sidhe King. He rebuilds the fortifications of Amefel, gathers together the alliance of the southern provinces in expectation of war with the west come spring, and learns more of his magical abilities and their dangers.

Cefwyn, meanwhile, has his own problems. The `state' religion resists his bride Ninevrise, the regent of the lands in rebellion to the west, on the grounds of her religious beliefs. Provincial barons used to controlling the previous king plot and scheme against him, his goal to free his bride's lands, and wouldn't mind if they managed to remove him too. New to statesmanship, he struggles to maintain balance, and device ways to nullify some of their influence without resorting to violence.

This is a book of parallels, as we switch back and forth between Tristen seeking to do right by Amefel and learn about himself, and Cefwyn and his court. As Tristen brings the `southern' barons together to secure the kingdom's western borders, Cefwyn attempt to control the unwilling `northern' barons. Both hope to prevent civil war in their own kingdom while preparing for war in the west.

This is the third season of Tristen's life, coming full grown into the world last spring, and the third season of the kingship for Cefwyn. Events force decisions and actions, pushing toward Midwinter, a turning of the year, but also a Turning of Wizardly Years, and indeed a Great Turning of Years.

Cefwyn's court prepares for a wedding, planned to be the first step in Cefwyn's campaign to control the northern barons; Tristen prepares for the arrival of the southern barons for festival and war plans.

The tale ends at Midwinter morning, after disturbing challanges to both courts Midwinter Eve. A murder preventing the wedding in Cefwyn's; a magical assault on Tristen. Both are resisted and controlled, but we await the fourth book to see the outcomes.

The books continue to unfold slowly. If you're looking for fast-paced space opera, these are not for you. But Cherryh excels at studying people and cultures in times of change and crisis, and is doing so again. The people are real and we are given time to see them in action and understand their motives and relationships. There are secrets still to unravel, and issues to settle. And these questions most of all: why was Tristen Summoned and Shaped? Is he still following the summoning or becoming his own man? What is his destiny? Will he live past his year? Much hinges on just these unknowns. ... Read more

3. Deceiver: Foreigner #11
by C. J. Cherryh
Hardcover: 384 Pages (2010-05-04)
list price: US$25.95 -- used & new: US$9.31
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0043RT8GI
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
"One of the best long-running SF series in existence" (Publishers Weekly) continues with the second novel in a brand-new Foreigner sequence.

The civil war among the alien Atevi has ended. Tabini-aiji, powerful ruler of the Western Association, along with Cajeiri, his son and heir, has returned to the Bujavid, his seat of power. But factions that remain loyal to the opposition are still present, and the danger these rebels pose is far from over. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (22)

5-0 out of 5 stars Foreigner is no longer foreign
You should judge any book as a stand-alone work, and by that measure "Deceiver" is probably perplexing. It is the eleventh volume in an audacious collection that tells the story of a small, stranded human colony on a very foreign world. While the humans can breathe the air, much of the native flora and fauna is toxic. Even more troubling, the planet is already populated by a physically larger, more powerful, and very intelligent race, the Atevi. And for -- so far -- eleven novels, author C.J. Cherryh takes the reader on a complex, wild ride through war, revolution, corruption, intrigue, accommodation, misunderstanding, reconciliation, culture clash, and a great many other themes. Taken as a whole, the series is one of the finest works of literature in the past 25 years.

In short, you can't really understand "Deceiver" without reading the ten previous novels. By itself, it is about a human regional lord, but he is the alien, and lord over entirely Atevi inhabitants of his small realm. His power as a lord is provided entirely through the natives, and is subject to the very complex overlapping loyalties of those natives. As a human, he has almost no power at all; his task is to figure out how best to be a regional lord of the Atevi, and to keep their conflicting needs, desires and loyalties from erupting into a planetary war.

On the other hand, if you read "Deceiver" as being the latest chapter in a very, very long novel, rather than as a stand-alone work, it is a gem: a transitional chapter taking the main character, Bren Cameron, from being a vital, but peripheral member of the court of the ruling Aiji (in essence, planetary ruler) and turning him into a human who can, for the first time, take an independent role in the politics of the planet. It is a big, fat, juicy stage setting for the twelfth novel, and like any fan of Cherryh's intensely intimate third-person narrative style, I felt "Deceiver" was around 500 pages too short. As readers, we don't know what happens next, but we do know that it will change the world. And we want that twelfth novel NOW.

Oh, yeah: in addition to the lost humans, now with their independent island colony separated by treaty from the planet's natives, and the Atevi superpower that dominates the rest of the planet, the story has an off-stage component. The entire human-Atevi civilization is under threat from two alien species, one a powerful, possible ally against a second, even more powerful and decidedly malignant race. Add in the complex, very un-human Atevi language, and you have a tapestry vaster than "Lord of the Rings."

Did I mention that I want the twelfth volume right now? While you wait for that, read "Deceiver," plus its prequels: Foreigner, Invader, Inheritor, Precursor, Defender, Explorer, Destroyer, Pretender, Deliverer, and Conspirator.

5-0 out of 5 stars A tense political thriller
DECEIVER provides a fine novel of Cherryh's Foreigner Universe, and tells of the end of the civil war among the alien Atevi and dangers still posed by rebel factions. A brilliant human diplomat's alliances and peril means no peace for him, however, and threats to a former safe haven and world remain, in this tense political thriller.

5-0 out of 5 stars Looking for the next installment
C.J. Cherryh has offered a very fresh look, at a topic that has been rattling around the cosmos for the last 15 years.I was thinking of plot variations for the next installment, which is my usual way of trying to peek into the mind of a brilliant storyteller, and admit that I do not know what will happen next!After reading 11 books in this series, it is truly amazing how fresh and enjoyable the Atevi-Mospheiran-Ship_Folk relationships really are.

Reading this series from "Foreigner" through the present for the 3-4th time, is just plain fun.

I highly recommend starting at the beginning, to read the character development, but if 11 books sounds daunting, try starting with Destroyer, then Pretender.This set starts as Bren Cameron, Cajeiri-Aiji, and Nand-dowager Ilisidi are returning home from stellar adventures.From Destroyer onward, this set of books really codifies the Atevi culture and human interface.

I signed on to find out when the next installment would be available, and found myself disappointed that Amazon hasn't published a release date.I hope the new release is announced soon!

5-0 out of 5 stars Nand' Bren is in the thick again
Eleventh in the Foreigner series, the longest single protagonist's career in science fiction, //Deceiver// is as elegantly complex and satisfying as its predecessors. The cover art is classic.

Nand' Bren's supposed-to-be vacation on his west coast estate of Najida proves anything but. Having given his Lord of the Heavens a territorial standing, Aiji Tabini, with his usual concealed intent-within-action, has thereby injected Bren and Bren's loyal aishid deep into the intrigues of an unsettled and piratical region of Mospheira. The group at risk includes the Paidhi Aiji's beautiful and deadly alien lover, Jago; and Toby, his brother, whose leman is also Bren's own ex-lover.

Complicated and aided by the Aijii-Dowager Ilisidii and a rapidly maturingCajeiri, Tabini's wayward son, the situation moves in Ms. Cherryh's inimitable style from detail to nuance to emotionally wrenching risks. Herein we see the evolution of Bren beyond responder to initiator, forced as always by the physically superior race among whom he moves to engage in combat of the mind.As always physical risks are distraction from the swordplay of intellect, and the combination makes this another must-have from the master of cultural conflict.

5-0 out of 5 stars Continued excitement
C J Cherryh continues to thrill with her "FOREIGNER" series book 11 "DECEIVER".It is one joy ride after another with this great author.I can not wait for the next, and the next, etc.I have only followed one other series as closely as this.Thanks so much for her talent. ... Read more

4. Conspirator: (Foreigner #10)
by C. J. Cherryh
Hardcover: 384 Pages (2009-04-28)
list price: US$25.95 -- used & new: US$5.91
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B002XULXRE
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
First in a brand-new Foreigner trilogy from Hugo Award winning author C. J. Cherryh.

Cajeiri is the young son of the powerful leader of the Western Association-and he has become a target for forces bent on destroying his father's rule. For Cajeiri is the first ateva youth to have lived in a human environment. And after hundreds of years of fragile atevi-human coexistence, he may very well be the first of his people to ever truly understand the so similar-yet so dangerously different-aliens who share his home planet and threaten the hidebound customs of his race. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (24)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
Politics, Action, Trouble all around, what more can you want in a great series? Don't miss this book! It has everything that makes this book and all the books in the Foreigner series, real page turners.

5-0 out of 5 stars Gods more fortunate, the saga continues!
Hard to believe, but the "Foreigner" series USED to bore me. I read the books in self-defense because my wife was enthralled and I needed to understand what the heck she was talking about. Now, I've become so invested in the wonderfully deep characters and the vastly complex world/universe that I await each new book with bated breath. THANKS, Ms. Cherryh for creating such a great "place" to escape to and puzzle about!

5-0 out of 5 stars Foreignor series #10
This book came quickly.I got a new, hardound copy of this book for $3.00.I am very satisfied.

5-0 out of 5 stars I'm a big fan
I've been a "Foreigner" fan since the first book and always await the next episode with delight.#10 did not let me down and I am becoming well-acquainted with the newer characters and liking them quite well.I can't wait until the next installment comes out.

5-0 out of 5 stars WHERE WILL WE GO NEXT?
Conspirator: (Foreigner #10)

I can't put this series down -- the evolution of alien culture clashes, both within their own structure as well as with outsiders, is what keeps me coming back.I have to know where these characters will go -- both physically and mentally. ... Read more

5. Fortress of Dragons
by C. J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 576 Pages (2001-03-01)
list price: US$8.99 -- used & new: US$4.16
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061020443
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

The walls between the worlds are down. A new unfolding has begun...

It started long ago, as a war between the shadowy Immortals that persists today, as the wizard Mauryl's Shaping confronts the Shadows summoned from Chaos. Tristen is that Shaping. Both more and less than human, he successfully fought sorcery's evil tides, a victory that brought his friend Cefwyn both a kingdom and true love.

But the Lines that hold the world in place are shifting again. A ruthless enemy is preparing for battle. Once again, Tristen will take up the sword inscribed with "Truth" and "Illusion" on its blade. But he faces more than war and a pretender to Cefwyn's throne. The Shadows he sees are straight from Ruin -- a flow of darkness covering the world like ink...

Fortress of Dragons completes the high-fantasy epic begun in Fortress in the Eye of Time and continued in Fortress of Eagles and Fortress of Owls --a powerful tale set in a world of magic, violence, wonder and awe -- a world as vividly real as our own.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (30)

1-0 out of 5 stars Where is the last chapter?
Surely she wrote one and in a publishing snafu it was left out of the book entirely when it went to print.Dragons was turning out to be such a relief from the slow, repetitive, Fortress of Eagles and Fortress of Owls.The action had picked up (finally!)

On the other hand, the relationships that developed or fleshed out in Dragons were overblown, a fall back to Eye of Time when the dramatic reactions to Tristen made perfect sense.Not so much now that his character has matured and changed so much from what he was in Eye of Time.Even that wouldn't have been so bad if everyone hadn't started reacting so strongly to everyone else.There was no middle ground, it was either love at first sight, or murderous hatred; terribly unrealistic.But that was forgivable in a book that was finally taking the interesting story started in Eye of Time and going somewhere with it.

Oh, if only she'd written that last chapter! After basing the series almost entirely on the character and relationship development, she left everyone and everything between them hanging with no conclusion whatsoever.Oh, the final battle took place, and then, standing on the battlefield: The End.

After I persevered through Eagles and Owls to get to that very conclusion, this book left me spitting mad.(Indeed, it took me two days to cool down enough to write a review that wasn't filled with uncharitable, and I'm sure forbidden, curse words.)

5-0 out of 5 stars A fantastic finale
This book is the final book in the series, after Fortress in the Eye of Time, Fortress of Eagles and Fortress of Owls. In this book, all of the plots and treasons from the previous books come to fruition. Enemies exist all around, and Tristen must help Cefwyn, lest all be lost. Action, magic, and dark deeds abound.

Like the previous book in this series, this book contains a prologue to remind the reader of the story so far, and lexicon describing all of the people and places in the story. The story is exciting, keeping you on the edge of your seat until the final conclusion. The ending was somewhat abrupt, but the lose ends means that there may yet be more stories to follow!

5-0 out of 5 stars The High King Is Revealed
Fortress of Dragons (2000) is the fourth fantasy novel of the Fortress series, following Fortress of Owls.In the previous volume, the Southron lords and troops converged on Henas'amef at Midwinter.Tristen hosted the Southron lords and sent hot food to their troops encamped in the meadows.As they celebrated, Auld Syes came avisiting to Tristen's Hall.

Later, he sensed someone out in the cold and rode out on Petelly to discover the Aswydd twins huddled in the snow on the way to Henas'amef.Tarien was very pregnant.Tristen put Tarien on his horse and Orien told him their story as they led Petelly towards town.Raiders had burned the nunnery, but the twins had escaped.When their horse ran away, they had continued onwards back to their home.

In Geulemara, the wedding of Luriel and Rusyn was underway, but then someone murdered the Patriarch.The assassin had decorated the corpse with Bryaltic amulets, obviously to divert suspicions to foreigners.In the ensuing riots, Ninevrise's Bryaltine priest was lynched and his shrine was burned.

In this novel, in Amafel, Tristen takes Orien and Tarien Aswydd back to Henas'amef.Once they reach the Zeide, Orien insists that they occupy their former rooms, but Tristen doesn't want these sorceresses to have such access.Besides, he is presently living in these quarters.Instead, he sends them to Cefwyn's old rooms and then asks Cook to attend Tarien, for she has much more experience with pregnancies than himself.He also seeks advice from Master Emuin and, for a change, receives some pertinent comments.

Uwen estimates that Tarien is about seven or eight months into the pregnancy and Cook agrees with that opinion.Orien says that Tarien is carrying Cefwyn's illegitimate son.Tristen also learns that the child is male and a wizard.Sedlyn -- Paisi's Gran -- is assigned the task of attending Tarien as the midwife.

Tristen calls the Southron Lords and all available Amefin nobles into council.He announces the arrival of the Aswydd twins and recounts their tale of the burning of the Anwyfar shrine.The Amefin lords are not too surprised at the involvement of Captain Essan.After much discussion, Tristen orders his gathered forces to cross the river and camp in Elwynor.

Emuin writes a report on these changed circumstances and Tristen adds his own notes to Cefwyn and Ninevrise.The note to Cefwyn is just a letter, but the note to Ninevrise can be read only by someone with the Gift.Indeed, Tristen can update this information as needed.

Crissand is beginning to respond to magic and wizardry.First he is driven to leave the Zeide without his guards and without Tristen's permission -- although not without his knowledge -- and then he loses himself in the snow.After an encounter with Elwynim rebels, Crissand returns to the Zeide only slightly wounded, but quite confused.Later, he hears voices near the old mews and discovers a way through the gray space to Ilefinian.

Tristen informs him of the influence of magical patterns and currents upon those with the Gift and warns him to beware external forces.Not that his advice ever had much influence on Crissand's actions when it came to protecting Tristen.Indeed, Crissand has much the same relationship to Tristen as Tristen does to Cefwyn; they both act in the same protective manner toward their lord and friend.

In Guelessar, after a very short mourning period for the previous Patriarch, the new Patriarch marries Luriel of Murandys to Rusyn of Panys.This time, the free ale is not quite as strong and certainly not as plentiful.The ceremony is completed without flaw and the newly married couple follow the King and Royal Consort out of the Quinaltine.Unfortunately, Lord Ryssand rides into the square just as the newlyweds exit the shrine.

In this story, Cefwyn frustrates Ryssand's attempt to disrupt the war effort by calling for an immediate movement of his barons to the river.Shortly thereafter, he receives the letters from Emuin and Tristen about his forthcoming paternity.Then Ninevrise tells him that she too is pregnant with a boy.Cefwyn retires to the Guelesfort shrine for meditation and fasting and then immediately leads his troops toward the river.

These four volumes conclude this story arc.Tristen learns more about his enemies and so does Cefwyn.Ninevrise learns that she is not carrying the firstborn child of Cefwyn.Various enemies get their just deserts.And Tristen finally resolves his role as the High King, but not in the way that you probably expected.

More is to follow, maybe even another multivolume set.Fortress of Ice, however, takes place almost two decades later.

Although the author never says so, one wonders if the five Sihhe Lords have any relationship to the five unnamed gods of the Quinaltine religion.The Sihhe would have been regarded as godlike in the ancient days of the Guelenfolk.Moreover, the Sihhe and the Guelenfolk both came from the northern lands.We will probably never know the answer, but think of the shock such knowledge would give to the Quinaltine priests!

Highly recommended for Cherryh fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of high magic, methodical wizardry and brotherly love.

-Arthur W. Jordin

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Novel (But Not The Concluding Volume)
The Fortress novels written by C.J. Cherryh are to be considered some of the finest reads in the fantasy genre.Quite honestly, I was tired of reading about magic this, curse that, balls of flame shooting out of oak staffs wielded by wizards/warlocks/sorcerors with foot long beards, talking dragons (though I make an exception to Tolkien's Smaug), etc.What I found most refreshing about the series was it's ability to slowly draw you into the world of Tristen, thought to be a ghost of one of the 5 Sihhe lords.

The conclusion of the book is vague, but that's because it is a lead in into the next book of the series, Fortress of Ice.Ms. Cherryh has just completed the book and is now undergoing final editing.Hopefully, that phase will be over soon, and we can all find out more about Hasfandyr, the Fortress of Ice!

p.s. Other GOOD fantasy books you should consider if you want fantasy with substance:G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series, Robin Hobb's Farseer series, Janny Wurt's Cycle of Fire trilogy, C.S. Friedman's Coldfire trilogy.Just to name a few!

2-0 out of 5 stars Inconclusive
Yeah so my dad got me the first book when I was like...15. I successively bought each book as it was printed, and loved them all.Despite the poor reviews I don't necessarily feel the last one was slow moving, at least not any more or any less than the first three.Cherryh's lyrical gift is rivalled in the fantasy realm only by Guy Gavriel Kay, who does a SLIGHTLY clearer job withcreating "visible" imagery.The premise is great, the language is great, the dialogue and characters are great, each having unique personalities.I'm 23 now and I've read the series again and again, hoping to find something I missed.But unlike any other conclusion I have ever seen, it doesn't actually end anything, it's not even a cliff hanger.The details of dialogue and interaction seem to have dribbled off and failed at the final page, with a slight nod in the direction of an ending in a cryptic letter from Tristen to Cefwyn. Sadly, though the writing is mostly gorgeous, I can't recommend it to anyone.For analytical poetry I read Dylan Thomas or Edmund Spenser.Art, entertainment, whatever it may be, give me a solid ending. ... Read more

6. Cyteen
by C.J. Cherryh
Paperback: 696 Pages (1995-09-01)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$6.38
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0044KN1Q2
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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In a futuristic world of cybernetics, two young friends become trapped in an endless nightmare of suspicion, surveillance, programmable servants, a centuries-old ruling class, and an enigmatic woman who rules them all. Reprint.Amazon.com Review
Genetic manipulation, murder, intrigue and politics are just part ofthe story of a young scientist in this substantial book. C. J. Cherryh, whowon the 1989 Hugo Award for this novel, following on her Hugo Award-winning Downbelow Station, offersanother ambitious work.A geneticist is murdered by an adviser, but thescientist is replicated in the lab, leaving a prodigy who attempts to chart adifferent fate. The book is intense and complex yet always presented with theflow of true storytelling. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (64)

1-0 out of 5 stars Dreary, overlong, pointless
Cyteen is much beloved by the science fiction community, based on the reviews written here, and the fact that it (and its predecessor, Downbelow Station) won the Hugo Award.Perhaps Downbelow Station is a good place to start with my review of Cyteen, in order to demonstrate why I despised the latter so much.

Both books are dark and never let you off the hook.Downbelow Station is the eponymous space station that serves as a refugee centre for people fleeing a war.The book is appalling on many levels - human cruelty and suffering, fear of arbitrary death, etc.But that's what happens in war and with displaced peoples, and Cherryh does not pull punches and makes an entirely plausible and logical story - everything follows logically from the premise of intergalactic war refugees.That the story is almost unreadable in its horror is the point of the book, I think.

Now we have Cyteen, and we meet the people on the other side of that conflict.The timing is different - the war is over and they are getting on with their lives, but we finally get a feel for the society that the Downbelow people feared so much.And apparently rightly so - they are a slave society, expansionist, careless of human life (slaves can be legally experimented on and terminated when the experiment is over).The action takes place in Reseune, the laboratory empire that creates genetically-modified humans for a variety of tasks - farmers, soldiers, etc.These genetically-modified humans are slaves with no legal rights (except those owned by the owner of the slave).

The story: Ari, the chief administrator of Reseune (and holder of high political office on Cyteen, and chief scientist/researcher into cloning) is found dead in her lab one day.Was she murdered?Security blackmails someone into confessing and ships him off to house arrest.The surviving administrators of Reseune then hatch a plan: since they have Ari's genetic code, and have her life documented extensively, they feel they can produce a replicate - someone so close to the original Ari that she could just step in and take back original Ari's power and research.

The novel isn't about this plot, so much, as it is about paranoia and security.What is really going on with the Administrators of Reseune, who control security, control access to information, and who rule like lawless medieval kings.Thus, as the plot develops, Ari tries to navigate the waters by sorting factions, creating allies, and even bringing in the son of the person who "murdered" Original Ari (himself a genetic duplicate of his father).The characters are indeed individuals you get to know well over the course of 700 pages.You also get a good handle on the society Cherryh has created.

But... but.... but....There are so many things that made this book unreadable.(Don't get me wrong - I read the whole thing, and didn't enjoy any of it except two 20-page passages.)For example, the person who arranged for the forced confession never bothers to question the murder - since he knows he arbitrarily found a scapegoat, why is he so sure that the son will murder the Ari replicate?Especially since his psych profile (presumably the same as the father's) indicates he is incapable of murder?In the ultimate insult to the reader, the case of Original Ari's death is never solved.Another strike: the idea of legally-enshrined replication is absurd.The cloned Ari is legally the same person as Original Ari, according to the constitution of this society.Huh?Does that mean twins are legally the same person?Surely the most elementary biology student would know the difference between genetic replication and reincarnation (but this confusion apparently drives all the action of the last half of the book)Strike three: Cherryh's world includes slavery, which is not (historically) unusual, but never investigates the morality of creating slaves that WANT to be slaves (through their genetic engineering and "brainwashed" upbringing).Are they supposed to be like the Janissaries of the Ottoman Empire - forming a type of elite (there's no doubt they are better at their jobs than the putative generalist free-men)?How do they feel about not having any rights?How do they feel when they are employed as private armies and set to killing each other?

So the book misses on a lot of plot points.Worst of all, though, is that the book is just plain boring.These characters are evil (by modern western standards), so you don't like them nor care what happens to them.The most reasonable main character - the son of the "murderer" - is simply whiney and weak at best.This might not be a problem in an action thriller but most of the book is spent with the characters making (psychological) plots, carrying them out, then analyzing how well the plot worked.The plots were often as simple as inviting someone to a birthday, or who danced with whom at the New Year's party.

To sum up, I have no idea why so many have such affection for this book.It took me forever to read because I wasn't interested enough to pick it up and keep reading.And isn't that the worst criticism one can levy at a novel?

5-0 out of 5 stars a "must read" for scifi lovers
the best book I have ever read that deals with the impact cloning would have on a society.

4-0 out of 5 stars visiting CJ world
I have read many books by CJ Cherryh, she is one of my favorite authors.Her characters are what draws me.She leaves enough to my imagination to allow me to get to know them and form my own opinions. This latest book is a political side of Cyteen culture, cloned individuals and made men, and the values their culture places on them.This book was meant to be read prior to Down Below Station with her new book Regenesis to be a sequil, 40 thousand in Gienna is kind of a parallel as it explores the Azi and their culture as throw aways.I admit that each of these company books makes me feel like I am missing something and need to read more to catch up. The one thing I have noticed with CJ Cherryh's writing however is the basic human story underneath all the action and intrigue that keeps me coming back and looking for more.

5-0 out of 5 stars Humankind Expanding Across the Universe.
This is the first book I've read from Ms. Cherryh and deeply impacted me.
She creates an astounding backdrop Universe full of intricacies, depicting Humankind's expansion 300 years from now.
In this Universe three human potencies compete for supremacy: Old Earth, Alliance and the Union. The story focuses on what's going on planet Cyteen, the heart of the Union, in the aftermath of the Merchant's War.
The explosive political situation conducts to the murder of Ariane Emory a powerful charismatic state leader. In our days that will mean only one thing: end of the issue. In Cyteen there is yet another chance: a clone of the murdered personality may be developed. But...will Ary 2 be as brilliant and decisive as her predecessor? Will she survive to adulthood in Cyteen's crushing environment?

The storyline is very interesting with extremely well developed main characters, whose lives are followed for more than twenty years.
The core of the novel however is the description of Cyteen's Universe (as happens with Asimov's "Foundation" or Herbert's "Dune" series). Genetics science is overdeveloped enabling creation of Citizen's replicas and the Azi, bred from human stock but educated thru "tapes" to fulfill specific needs (military, scientific or just plain workforce).
Azi psychology is depicted in detail by Ms. Cherryh and their interaction with "standard" humans is full of complex subtleties.

A thought provoking novel that will be enjoyed by sci-fi fans!

Reviewed by Max Yofre.

1-0 out of 5 stars Very confusing plot, characters. Slow to build up. I gave up.
I gave up reading it in the 4th chapter, utterly confused about who was who and what was going on. The plot was not exciting at all. The background of a genetically planned society with casts and programmed minds while interesting failed to answer the most basic questions. ... Read more

7. Deliverer (Foreigner)
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 416 Pages (2008-01-02)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$4.06
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756404673
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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From its beginnings as a human-alien story of first contact, the Foreigner series has become a true science fiction odyssey. The ninth book in the epic series, and the third book in the third Foreigner trilogy, Deliverer is a worthy contribution to Cherryh's magnum opus that is destined to be a classic. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (27)

5-0 out of 5 stars While the 10th in this series, the author made this one enough different from othersto be quite interesting.
This book picked up the pace again, which slowed in the prior book. Here the author is back on track, and the book is interesting from the beginning, and stays that way to the end. Somewhat predictable in plot, but handled well, and the characters stay focused through out the book. Very good read, but best if you have read at least a few of the earlier series.

2-0 out of 5 stars No kinde version available after 5 months
I generally like this author's works, and am a fan of this particular series, however, not having a kindle version after this amount of time is a real bummer. To show my frustration, I've bought a used paperback instead for $2.00 USD, and plan on reselling it for $1.00 with the tag line of "Kindle Special!" If the publisher is reading this, know that I would have bought your kindle formatted (at a fair price) copy over a used version for much less.

4-0 out of 5 stars A most enjoyable Foreigner novel
One of the better books in this series. Not overmuch introspection and agonizing. Tight plot. Nice characterization and expansion of the world and characters that finally dovetails right back to the first book. Cherryh is still unmatched in the coherence of her universes. Oh yeah... Amazon delivered quickly in good condition and with no fuss.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not the best
CJ Cherryh is a prolific and wide-ranging writer.I love some of her books, while others leave me cold. This one was just sort of mediocre.

In general, Deliverer reminded me a lot of the first Foreigner book.(Come to think of it, I wasn't wild about the first book, either.It was the second book, and several after that, that grabbed me.)This felt like a retread.And I confess: I find Cajeiri thoroughly tedious.I could cheerfully throw him out an airlock.

What I really liked about the Foreigner series was the three-way conflict between the atevi, the ship humans, and the planetary humans.It's not the same without the shipfolk.Cherryh dropped some interesting hints about history and politics of the ship in earlier books, and now it's looking like those will never be followed up on.

And I miss Jase, dammit.

3-0 out of 5 stars It's ok
The first half of the book is cleaning up the mess left at the end of the previous book.It doesn't get into any form of "new" story till the second half.Once it gets there, it's interesting enough.Overall I didn't find it as captivating as the earlier books in the series. ... Read more

8. Fortress in the Eye of Time
by C. J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 784 Pages (1996-06-01)
list price: US$8.99 -- used & new: US$2.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061056898
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Deep in an abandoned, shattered castle, an old man of the Old Magic muttered almost forgotten words. His purpose -- to create out of the insubstance of the air, from a shimmering of light and a fluttering of shadows. that most wonderous of spells, a Shaping. A Shaping in the form of a, young man who will be sent east on the road the old was to old to travel. To right the wrongs of a long-forgotten wizard war, and call new wars into being. Here is the long-awaited major new novel from one of the brightest stars in the fantasy and science fiction firmament.C.J.Cherryh's haunting story of the wizard Mauryl, kingmaker for a thousand years of Men, and Tristen, fated to sow distrust between a prince and his father being. A tale as deep as legend and a intimate as love, it tells of a battle beyond Time, in which all Destiny turns on the wheel of an old man's ambition, a young man's innocence, and the unkept promised of a king to come.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (53)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fasinating new characters
Since I like most of Cherryh's work, I hoped to like this book and wasn't disappointed.She is often wordy as she sets the scene for a new series but since she takes me along with her, I'm content to read her words.
Mauryl was a wizard of great repute, and "Shaped" a being from ashes.He hoped that this Shaping would be a long dead warrior - but decided that wasn't what he got.He got Tristen - a total innocent.A completely unknowing being in the shape of a grown man. Tristen is a wonderful character & I was able to go with him as he discovered rain on bare skin.And chuckle when Mauryl was agast at some of Tristen's discoveries. When Mauryl was "killed" by a former student, it thrust Tristen out into the world to follow Mauryl's instructions of "follow the road".Which takes him to meet his first friend, Cefwyn, the heir apparent of Elwynor.And their adventures begin.Wizardy, wars, scheming, a wonderful tale.Glad there are more - hope it doesn't end.

5-0 out of 5 stars A unique fantasy
The first time I read this book, I found it slow, I skimmed
quickly, and did not think much of the book.Eventually, I
read it carefully.My admiration for the book has grown
steadily. It is a remarkably original and detailed fantasy
world with many likeable characters. Cherryh is also a master
of the English language with wonderful dialogue and almost
lyrical descriptions.

Cherryh has set up a universe where the world diffuses into a
formless grey space (where shadows live). With death, people
become shadows. The rules and laws of the world are fixed for
most people, but wizards can use the grey space to some extent.
Some beings (gods) can manipulate the grey space and change the
laws of the world.

The book starts with Mauryl, the greatest wizard, summoning a
being, who he names Tristen, from the grey space. Mauryl was
despairing in the face of threat named Hasufin before he
summoned Tristen, and being very cautious, he doesn't achieve
what he hoped for, and soon Mauryl loses to Hasufin and "dies."
I use quotes because death for wizards is not quite death.
A childlike Tristen goes off into the world.

What is the threat?Who (or what) did Mauryl summon?Why was
Mauryl cautious? How will it turn out?

This is not the first time Mauryl has dealt with Hasufin.

In response to Hasufin, Mauryl had in the distant past asked
the help of five beings (of which the greatest was one called
Barrakketh). These beings were basically gods, who could change
the laws of the world. Barrakketh subdued Hasufin and he upheld
the world, but if you opposed him, he was basically a monster:
if you were a wizard and opposed him, he would use magic
(basically a wish of Barrakketh would lead to events happening
to make the wish be true) to trample the wizards, and if you
were not a wizard, he would brutally get the upper hand by
force of arms.

The five, after several centuries, drifted off into the grey

But Hasufin wasn't gone. He tried to bring himself back from
the grey space in an infant's body.Mauryl stopped him.But
Mauryl is at the end of his strength and he summons Tristen.
Tristen is in fact Barraketh, but because of Mauryl's
cautiousness, Tristen is mentally a child, and knows nothing
about his past, or of his power.

Tristen is a "god" learning what he is very slowly.He is
quite likeable and is "polite" in the sense that he as he
understands what his wishes do, does not want to use them to
change people or the world. It is dangerous to the world and
the people he comes to love for Tristen to get too angry. He
cannot even wish people too much good fortune without having
bad consequences.

Cherryh has set herself a hard task.She succeeds wonderfully.
Tristen is not the only very likeable and interesting person in
the book, there are (among others) also Cefwyn, Emuin, and

3-0 out of 5 stars HORRID Kindle version! PROOFREAD before SELLING!
This is a beautiful book (and series)--intelligent, complex, with delicious characterization and writing. It has been one of my favorites since my first reading when it was released years since, but I find I must rank it down because of the dreadful presentation of the Kindle edition.

I strongly advise anyone contemplating reading it to buy the BOOK and not the Kindle version. I have seen problems in Kindle conversions before; I've had my Kindle 1 for almost a year. I have never seen anything to equal this this ghastly conversion. The typographical errors are manifest and widespread and appalling. When I reported this problem to Amazon, their response was to ask me to detail the problems for them--detailed descriptions and locations in the Kindle text. Otherwise, they wanted me to copy-edit the text. Um.... there are HUNDREDS of errors, perhaps even THOUSANDS! I have only "read" less than half the text! In places, the problems makes the text essentially nonsensical. I can easily see where a new reader would find this not only unreadable, but it would turn them off forever from the great Ms. Cherryh's books and perhaps even from buying e-versions for the Kindle, which is very sad, indeed!

Amazon and/or whoever is responsible for the conversion: you should be ashamed of yourselves for expecting people to PAY for this!

1-0 out of 5 stars Proof read the thing - darn it!
This book was a bit tedious to get through.The main character does not come into his power until late in the book, which is to be expected otherwise there wouldn't be very much of a story.I do wish that whoever transcribed the kindle edition knew how too correctly run spell check and proof read.While I did not count the number of spelling errors it felt to be at least 100.The few times that spell check appeared to be used the wrong word was replaced.Spoke versus spike (not an actual example) can greatly change the meaning of the sentence.In some cases there were spaces between words that were not due to word wrapping.There were a few cases of nad versus and.Yes it probably did pass spell check.Read the darn thing out loud! This was without a doubt the most careless job of proof reading I have encountered in 35 years devouring books.

Publishers take note:I've had my kindle 2 one week and I've purchased 32 books.If you do a careless job you'll lose money.I'm sorry that I bought the rest of this series.I hope that a better effort was made on the remaining volumes.

3-0 out of 5 stars Fortress will keep your interest and put you to sleep, too.
You can read all about the series and a 'Fortress' synopsis by clicking on the info at Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. So I'll just say: patience is the WORD here. This would have been a fantastic novel if some major editing had been done to tighten the plot considerably- and get rid of the dang dangling hanging or unattached participles! I've never seen so many and constantly had to pause and chuckle over these, and to figure out what was really happening. The second aspect? Dozens of characters- which was fine - but their names! And the names of their kingdoms and people, etc! All unpronouncable. I very much dislike having to constantly pause and try to figure out how to pronounce names, etc.

Lastly, Tristen does get a bit tired, what with his 'child-like' responses and fascinations. But his is very likable and it's lovely to 'see' the world through his eyes, at times.

A good plot and interesting characters are there and I found this novel more interesting as I read. I'm at the end now and a bit irritated with the writer again; Tristen seemed to be growing in awareness and then she has him responding in his initial child-like behavior and verbalizations over 'Owl'... an...owl... who (pun intended) leads Tristen along the road at the beginning of the book after the wizard dies-- and I never really figured out what actually happened with the wizard... at the time it happened.

Will I read the next book in the series? I'm going to try. But if Tristen doesn't start behaving like a man and less like a goofy three-year-old... I'm going to call it quits. Actually I've known more sophisticated three year olds.

Warning: don't read this novel when you're even slightly sleepy. I've remained up for hours past bedtime with books, but this one puts me out every time.

... Read more

9. Goblin Mirror
by C.J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 308 Pages (1993-12-04)
list price: US$5.99 -- used & new: US$90.64
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0345384768
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Yuri, the youngest prince in the kingdom of Maggiar, secretly follows an expedition comprised of the Princes Bogdan and Tamas and their men to the land over-mountain to seek an answer to their troubles. Reprint. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars A GREAT BOOK IF YOU CAN FIND IT
This story grabs you from the beginning and keeps you along for the ride.The boys are wonderfully real.The youngest of three brothers innocently follows his brothers into a world beyond his imagining through his jealouswish to be included because he's too young to go out into the world and tryto find a solution to a perplexing problem his country is experiencing. All of the interactions of the characters are fun.Not always happy andsafe, but they make you smile nonetheless. The magic within is intrieguing,and the young magicians innocently dangerous.

5-0 out of 5 stars Goblins made good
One of the best aspects of Cherryh's fiction is the close, almost claustrophobic environment she creates in almost every book. She certainly manages that here, with a fantasy tale with more folkloric and fairy-tale elements than her other fantasy novels. This is definitely one of her stronger fantasy novels. I tend to prefer her science fiction, generally having trouble getting into her fantasy work, but The Goblin Mirror is a notable exception. This is one of her best books - and I've read them all. ... Read more

10. Pretender (Foreigner Universe)
by C. J. Cherryh
Mass Market Paperback: 404 Pages (2007-02-06)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$4.06
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756404088
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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The epic tale of the human survivors of a lost spacecraft, marooned on a planet inhabited by a hostile alien race, follows the civilization's rise from the age of steam through early space flight to confrontations with other alien species in distant sectors of space. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars great read!
C.J. Cherryh continues her great saga of Bren Cameron in typical great style. For followers of Bren Paidhi this is a great read.

5-0 out of 5 stars machimi in action
I always love an intricate Cherryh adventure, and this is no exception.We get to see more details of the workings of man'chi and the way Atevi government is formed, along with adventures through the countryside.This was thoroughly enjoyable.
The one little tidbit that bothered was a lack of continuity in the detail of Bren's residence:he had his own apartment before setting off into space and had not lived in the Atageini residence for years.That seems to have been forgotten in this book, although a sticking-plaster is applied in the next book and it would seem very un-kabiu to remark any further upon the indignity.

3-0 out of 5 stars Good
Not a stand-alone book---8th in series.If you follow the Foreigner series by CJ Cherryh, then buy it.Best books in the series were first two though (Foreigner and Invader).

5-0 out of 5 stars Absolutely outstanding
Anyone who's familiar with Cherryh already knows the quality of her work. If you're not, I recommend ANYTHING by her. The first three books set in the Foreigner universe were brilliant explorations of cultures clashing on a grand scale. The second trilogy was all that and even more action. This third series raises the ante even higher. If you're a fan of Sci-Fi, first contact, or intrigue, you can't go wrong with this whole series.

5-0 out of 5 stars Pretender
Great addition to the Foreigner Universe.I enjoy Cherryh's introspective style.If one hasn't read the previous books in the series, do so.This is not a stand-alone book. ... Read more

11. The Dreaming Tree
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 464 Pages (1997-12-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.25
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Asin: 0886777828
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Journey to a transitional time in the world, as the dawn of mortal man brings about the downfall of elven magic. But there remains one final place untouched by human hands--the small forest of Ealdwood, in which dwells Arafel the Sidhe, who has more love of the earth than any of her kind. This is a moving, compelling tale of the last stronghold of immortality struggling to survive the rise of man. Ads in "Locus". ... Read more

Customer Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars Faerie Waking
This volume...
dear faerie kind,
... composed of two books (the Dreamstone and the Tree of Swords and Jewels), is probably one of C.J. Cherryh less known works. And it is not the typical swords and sorcery stuff. What it is, is a true classic of Faerie Literature and will probably endure long, long after other works on the subject have passed away. This is one of our favorite novels and we cherish our copy, recommend it whenever we can, for it is beautifully written, elegantly executed and brings Faerie to life. C.J.Cherry is one of the few writers who actually understands the Seelie (the light elf/faerie folk). If Faerie calls to your heart, you can find a great deal of its magic and beauty here.
the silver elves

5-0 out of 5 stars Dreaming Tree Review
I read these two stories originally in their separate volumes before DAW collected them together in one volume.

As I rightly recalled, I still enjoyed this story and it does deserve to be a classic. The story takes place over a few generations, with the first couple passing by quickly so you don't get a chance to really know the characters.

But in the second book, the last generation followed in this story, you do get to know the characters better.

The reading can be slow, but the story is good. So you'll be disappointed if you're expecting a fast read and lots descriptions of action.

And as another reviewer pointed out, there is a song written by Heather Alexander called "Arafel's Lament" that's based on this book. If you can find it, it really is worth listening to.

5-0 out of 5 stars Tragic tale of the last of the Sidhe, and the end of the Age of Faery
The dreaming tree is a combined version of CJ Cherryh's masterful Arafel stories.
This isn't a book with a lot of action; it is a thoughtful and thought provoking tale of the last of the Sidhe, the great race before the age of Man.

If you are not familiar with CJ Cherry, this book may be a chore to read, as it is so full of introspection and sorrow.If you already are familiar with her third person intense internal prose, you will love this tragic tale, where loneliness and alienation are palpable.

Utterly believable, powerful, wonderful!

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
In short: this has to be one of the most beautiful books I've read, a truly magical book. It makes you wish you'd find anything, even a pooka in a nearby river trying to coax you to death, just to see that Ealdwood once was...

The book consists of two books, as has been said, and I will deal with them as one. Anyway, I barely even noticed where the first book ended and the second began.

Cherryh paints in this book an absolutely lovely fairytale - a fairytale that feels like real life. It is sad and gloomy at times, and dark, but there is hope and love in it as well, and in the end the sad times only make it more beautiful. The characters are real, full of feeling, and all their feelings come across to the reader quite vividly. The story spans over quite a long time - in fact, we see four different generations in it. There is no single main character in the book for its whole duration - unless that is Arafel, the Sidhe lady.

One thing people have complained about this book is that it's slow. Well, this accusation hardly comes as a surprise to those who are familiar with C. J. Cherryh's other work... isn't that what she's always accused of by some readers? I wouldn't say this is slow, though. Let's just say it's not fast - at least most of the time. The story goes on at its own pace and keeps you in its grip through the quiet days of farming and everyday life, through the battles and hunts, as well as the magical encounters with the mystic world of Eald - or at least, this is what happened to me.

I don't know what else I can say about this book. To me, it is one of the most charming books I've ever come across, and I think I'll remember it for a long time. Originally I got it from the library, but it didn't take a long time for it to find its way into my bookshelf.

2-0 out of 5 stars Pros and cons
This book is a collection of two titles, The Dreamstone and The Tree of Swords and Jewels.

I found The Dreamstone to be a wonderful read. Very concise in its form, the pacing worked well, and the story unfolds over a period of years, which is important to the central focus of the novel being on Eald and its relationship with humans. This first book comes in at under 200 pages, I believe, and really feels right.

Now, the second book is where things fall down. Somewhere along the way someone must have suggested that this story needed more words. Because there's a lot more words. And they're not all necessary. Gone is the conciseness of the story, gone is the mystery of Eald, as we focus more on humans and their squabbles over the kingdom. This book loses focus from the first one, and really drags through the final half. It is too long, it is too wordy, it is too complicated... it is just too much, frankly.

A shame, really, since The Dreamstone was really a wonderful read in itself. ... Read more

12. Pride of Chanur
by C.J. Cherryh
 Hardcover: 224 Pages (1989-06-01)

Isbn: 074930068X
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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No one at Meetpoint Station had ever seen a creature like the Outsider.Naked-hided, blunt toothed and blunt-fingered, Tully was the sole survivingmember of his company -- a communicative, spacefaring species hitherto unknown-- and he was a prisoner of his discoverer/ captors the sadistic, treacherouskif, until his escape onto the hani ship The Pride of Chanur.

Little did he know when he threw himself upon the mercy of The Pride and hercrew that he put the entire hani species in jeopardy and imperiled the peace ofthe Compact itself. For the information this fugitive held could be the ruin orglory of any of the species at Meetpoint Station.

Cover art by Michael Whelan

... Read more

Customer Reviews (15)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wild Cats & Lost Human United by Fate in Deep-Space Chase.
After reading and enjoying Ms. Cherryh's "Cyteen" I started searching for more of her novels and decided to begin reading Chanur's Saga. "The Pride of Chanur" is its first volume.

Ms. Cherryh creates, once more, an astounding backdrop Cosmos full of intricacies, depicting the other end of the universe shown in "Cyteen".
Here she elaborates The Compact's Media where many alien races compete, trade and fight. There are oxygen breathers and methane breathers; big cat-like people and gray somber entities; aggressive races and peaceful ones; some species are deceitful and others are straight forward.
Just to make things more complex a Human show up demanding asylum from the Hani (Chanur's kind) and giving way to a feud between Hani & Kif (the bad guys of the story).

One astounding feature of the book is that the main character is Captain Pyanfar Chanur and her ethnocentric point of view is THE point of perception. All other races (including human) are strange and requires all her imagination to figure up what kind of entities they are. Are they friendly? Stable? Trustworthy? All these and many more questions she has to answer in order to survive.

The other bewildering aspect is that Hani kind is conducted by their females. Ladies are in charge of commerce, space travel, politics and any other significant activity (even war). Males are the Lords, pampered by females, sporting and hunting. Only one by Clan, he may be defied by other males (his own exiled sons are suitable) to singular combat and the winner takes all.

The novel has the typical Space Opera structure, enriched by new elements as character's depth and culture's coherence.
It is a very good sci-fi novel that will be enjoyed by fans & general public too!

Reviewed by Max Yofre.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sheer Genius, and a Rollicking Good Time
Gods be feathered, how I love this book.The four-book Chanur series is one of the greatest SF epics of all time. (The fifth, Chanur's Legacy, is a fun afterthought but not as deep as the original chunk.)This first volume is a satisfying stand-alone read, but trust me, you'll want to read the rest.I always warn people not to start this series unless you have a large chunk of time set aside--even though I've reread it countless times, once I get started I still find its momentum impossible to put down.

Pride of Chanur starts with an unforgettable image--a mostly naked fugitive human writing numbers on a spaceship deck in his own blood to prove his sentience to the startled alien who has just slashed him with her claws in self-defense.From there it rolls along into an intelligent, funny, and utterly satisfying adventure.Cherryh achieves an amazing feat in telling the story entirely through alien eyes, yet still giving us completely satisfying, believable, and likable protagonists.She vividly depicts four entirely distinct and fully realized oxy-breathing species, each complete with distinct patterns of thought, traditions, and psychology, plus several other more mysterious methane-breathing species, in all their complex and troublesome interactions, plus humans (well, mostly just one) thrown precipitously into the mix.The human is the alien in this story, and we hear his perspective only through the often garbled and always incomplete computer translator, an approach which is unusually realistic (unlike so much SF where translation always works perfectly, instantly) and always leaves you curious to know more.The reversal of perspective is so convincing and complete that you'll find yourself looking at your own species' psychology as the strange one.

Plus there's the fascinating reverse-sexism of the hani, the main alien culture, which essentially follows the structure of a sentient lion pride: men are considered too volatile and unstable for everyday business, thus are kept secluded except during dynastic battles; the sensible, pragmatic females take care of commerce, law, alliances, and space-faring.(In the sequels, these beliefs get confronted and deconstructed in interesting ways.) The quintessentially feline temperament and mannerisms of the hani--vain, swaggering, hot-tempered, affectionate, physical, fierce, loyal--are convincing and irresistible, especially if you're a cat person anyway!And be warned, the pidgin and idiom the characters use for inter-species communication will completely infect your brain.

Dive right into this satisfying yarn, and know that in the next three books a far, far wilder, bigger, and more complex story will unfold...nail-biting action intertwined flawlessly with deep psychological and cultural insight, tangled intrigue, agonizing moral dilemmas, and extraordinary character transformations.Enjoy the ride!

5-0 out of 5 stars Gods rot the kif! (. . . and stop laying your ears back like that)
Not many writers can do aliens as well as Cherryh -- bilateral, oxygen-breathing, most of them, but with minds and emotions and evolved biologies that are very, very different indeed from human. Pyanfar Chanur is the successful, wealthy captain of a Hani trading ship, a powerful figure in the powerful Chanur family, leading a crew composed all of family members, like all Hani ships. And then she's suddenly saddled with Tully, a refugee human escaped from the Kif, an opportunistically piratical race that evolved by blood feud. Humans are newly arrived on the edge of the space occupied by the member races of the Compact and trading rights with them will be worth a lot, but Pyanfar will have to risk everything. And the profoundly untrustworthy Kif aren't going to make things easier. Cherryh does a terrific job of gradually introducing the reader to the intricacies of the vaguely lion-like Hani society, in which females do the work and tend to the psychologically unstable, world-bound males, who are lords of the estates -- until they're challenged by younger males and finally lose. You'll come to know Pyanfar and her crew as individuals, too. The plot gallops, the characterizations are intriguing, and the dialogue is snappy. Yet the book is much denser than it appears. What more could you want -- except the three following volumes in this saga?

5-0 out of 5 stars Deep Space Wild Cats & Lost Humans United by Fate.
After reading and enjoying Ms. Cherryh's "Cyteen" I started searching for more of her novels and decided to begin reading Chanur's Saga. "The Pride of Chanur" is its first volume.

Ms. Cherryh creates, once more, an astounding backdrop Cosmos full of intricacies, depicting the other end of the universe shown in "Cyteen".
Here she elaborates The Compact's Media where many alien races compete, trade and fight. There are oxygen breathers and methane breathers; big cat-like people and gray somber entities; aggressive races and peaceful ones; some species are deceitful and others are straight forward.
Just to make things more complex a Human show up demanding asylum from the Hani (Chanur's kind) and giving way to a feud between Hani & Kif (the bad guys of the story).

One astounding feature of the book is that the main character is Captain Pyanfar Chanur and her ethnocentric point of view is THE point of perception. All other races (including human) are strange and requires all her imagination to figure up what kind of entities they are. Are they friendly? Stable? Trustworthy? All these and many more questions she has to answer in order to survive.

The other bewildering aspect is that Hani kind is conducted by their females. Ladies are in charge of commerce, space travel, politics and any other significant activity (even war). Males are the Lords, pampered by females, sporting and hunting. Only one by Clan, he may be defied by other males (his own exiled sons are suitable) to singular combat and the winner takes all.

The novel has the typical Space Opera structure, enriched by new elements as character's depth and culture's coherence.
It is a very good sci-fi novel that will be enjoyed by fans & general public!
Reviewed by Max Yofre.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Stand-Alone Start to "The Chanur Saga"
I'm currently re-reading this in it's incarnation as the first part of "The Chanur Saga" "Omnibus edition."I wanted to put a separate review here since I intend to rate that "omnibus" low simply because it's not complete."The Pride of Chanur" is an excellent book.Written in the standard Cherryh "from the gut" manner, it grabs on to your emotions and yanks them hither and yon from the first couple of pages all the way to the end.It's one of those books where you try to read faster and faster so that you can find out what's going to happen (even after having read it several times before).The best part of the book is the fact that it's stand-alone:it finishes what it starts.The remainder of the series requires this book.But, this book doesn't require the remainder of the series (though you'll definitely want to read that).Excellent book. ... Read more

13. The Collected Short Fiction of C.J. Cherryh
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 736 Pages (2008-10-07)
list price: US$8.99 -- used & new: US$5.35
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756405262
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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A stunning collection of C.J. Cherryh's short fiction

Featuring the short stories, novellas, and novelettes of multiple award-winning author C.J. Cherryh, this volume is a must-have for fans and newcomers alike. It includes stories that originally appeared in her earlier collections, in magazines, and in other collections from DAW and other publishers. This special volume will include an introduction by Cherryh, written exclusively for this book. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Cherryh short stories
Cherryh is a well-known name on the sci-fi shelves, so I was intrigued when I read a short story in a collection of Great Short Stories.I am very glad I looked further for the rest.Short stories are to literature what creme brulee is to dessert- only the finest can pull it off- as did the author of these very disparate stories with great range and storytelling skill.

5-0 out of 5 stars A collected treat!
If you love the work of Ms Cherryh, this is a book for you. If, like I did, you already had the three books of short fiction contained in this volume it is still a book for you. First of all it is bound up in one beautiful hardback volume, so it looks a lot nicer in your library(not to mention the three have become valuable as collector items, so you can protect them and put them away). But it also has the advantage of some additional insights of the author as well as a story made especially for this edition. Lastly, if you don't have these stories in some other form you are missing a real treat. Ms. Cherryh's multi level writing style is always rewarding, and if you like I do have made an effort to own everything she has written will give you essential, parts of stories that you may have missed, (for example, Faery In Shadow, would be a head scratcher with out reading the first half of the story only available in the short story collections. Hint, Hint Publisher... Why don't you publish that Story in one volume for collectors? This is a great Airport Book, as it short stories and has natural breaks, but also the author, has set the book up as a story teller speaking to a traveler. Excellent!

5-0 out of 5 stars Filled with strong plots and varied settings
C. J. Cherryh is mostly known for her fantasy novels; the Collected Short Fiction Of C.J. Cherryh features the first comprehensive collection of her short fiction, and provides a range of satisfyingly complex stories marked with the Cherryh fondness for alien/human relationships. From Cassandra, about a woman cursed with prophecy and madness, to a story set in the far future where a dying sun dictates a world's moves, Collected Short Fiction Of C.J. Cherryh is filled with strong plots and varied settings. Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great sf anthology
This is an interesting collection that is divided into three categories: Sunfall, Visible Light, and other stories.Fans of the author will appreciate that her talent with short stories matches that of her novels.Newcomers will gain a wonderful taste of one of the best speculative fiction authors of the past two plus decades.

The Sunfall tales were mostly published in the early 1980s collection with one new one never seen before this addition.These nine fabulous stories focus on life in the cities as the sun begins to cool.

The eight wonderful tales that make up the Visible Light anthology were released in the mid 1980s.These delightful stories focus on individuals who in many cases could be you or me overwhelmed by external conflict often outside their control.

The other section is more of a potpourri that contains fifteen interesting contributions, but though each one is well written, they also feel like fill-in material at least in this anthology.Even the strongest tale of the book, Pots in which archeological truths fail to stand up to political realities, seems out of place.

To overcome that feeling of displacement, this reviewer read the collected short fiction as if there were three short story books.Each one provides plenty of enjoyment to readers.

Harriet Klausner ... Read more

14. The Green Gods
by Nathalie Henneberg
 Paperback: 268 Pages (2010-09-30)
list price: US$20.95 -- used & new: US$19.49
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Asin: 1935558471
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Les Dieux Verts [The Green Gods] (1961) tells of the romance of Prince Aran and Atlena during the Emerald Age of the Earth, in the far future, when Man's Empire is on the decline and the world is ruled by the eponymous "Green Gods," powerful entities which arose from the vegetal kingdom.The works of Rosny Award-winner Nathalie Henneberg (1917-1977) stand alone in the French SF landscape of the 1960s. Her use of the language, betraying Germanic and Russian influences, was unusually well-suited to creating larger-than-life heroic characters and epic, mythological romances. Her skills at creating intricately detailed baroque universes was second to none.This new edition translated by Hugo Award winnmer C.J. Cherryh also includes four Henneberg stories translated by SF Grand Master Damon Knight and an introduction by French SF scholar Charles Moreau.C.J. Cherryh, is a Hugo Award winning science fiction and fantasy author who has written more than 60 books since the mid-1970s, many set in her Alliance-Union universe. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars N.C. Henneberg = Nathalie & Charles Henneberg!
Henneberg (or the Hennebergs) is known as the "A. Merritt of France" because of the color and high fantasy of their concepts.
The long-threatened greenhouse effect has become a reality.Here is the world beneath the greenhouse sky, where vegetation has evolved into huge and intelligent species and where humanity finds itself, after its own disasters, reduced more and
more to servants of these Green Gods and foreseeing their own extinction.Only the daring sea prince Aran and the puppet queen
Atlena stand against doomsday -- and this is their surprising adventure.Originally published in France in 1961. ... Read more

15. Betrayer: Foreigner #12
by C. J. Cherryh
 Hardcover: 384 Pages (2011-04-05)
list price: US$25.95 -- used & new: US$17.13
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Asin: 0756406544
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The twelfth book in Hugo Award winner C.J. Cherryh's epic Foreigner series.

The civil war among the alien atevi has ended. Tabini-aiji, powerful ruler of the Western Association, along with Cajeiri his son and heir, and his human paidhi, Bren Cameron, have returned to the Bujavid, their seat of power.

But factions that remain loyal to the opposition are still present, and the danger these rebels pose is far from over. ... Read more

16. Conspirator: Foreigner #10
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 400 Pages (2010-05-04)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$4.29
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Asin: 0756406048
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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First in a brand-new Foreigner trilogy

Cajeiri is the young son of the powerful leader of the Western Association-and he has become a target for forces bent on destroying his father's rule. For Cajeiri is the first ateva to understand the humans living among them-an understanding that threatens his own race. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Have been waiting for this one
I have been caught up in this saga from the beginning.Yes, you can start anywhere in the line of books, but you feel like you are going home if you start at the beginning.Loved it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Conspirator: Foreigner # 10
This is a fascinating series and the last one is no exception.I look forward to each new book in the series.One cannot help but be impressed with the ability of the author to keep facts and people in order.The series is so impressive to me since I enjoy scifi or SiFy and with it a good dollop of fantasy.The stories are not fact, but they might well be, sometime in the future.A wondrous read.A wondrous cast of characters.And a terrific sense of adventure and action. ... Read more

17. Destroyer (Foreigner Universe)
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 416 Pages (2006-02-07)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.84
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Asin: 0756403332
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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C.J. Cherryh, one of the most prolific and acclaimed SF writers in the world, delivers the seventh book in her Foreigner series, and the first book in the new Foreigner trilogy-the epic tale of the survivors of a lost spacecraft who crash-land on a planet inhabited by a hostile, sentient race. From its beginnings as a human-alien story of first contact, the Foreigner series has become a true SF odyssey. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (22)

5-0 out of 5 stars Good
Start of the third Foreigner trilogy. The story returns to the atevi, to find them in a civil war. I have a mixed response to this. On the one hand this plot development feels like a bit of a detour, the sort of thing that doesn't actually imperil human-atevi relationships but creates temporary conflict to allow a new level of prosperity. On the other hand it does work as a good followup to the awkward liens of the future history, that everything isn't always in a straight progression. As well, the notion that this crisis might have developed because of Bren's pushing human values onto an alien society is welcomed, it serves as a good corrective for the personal level as well as the meta one of reading too much conventionality into aliens. And on a thematic level an atevi civil war works well with the ongoing challenge of understanding, balancing intrigue and culture, and switching power to the next generation.

On a direct reading level, though, the book dragged a little. It's still complex and engaging stuff, but it wasn't nearly as good as Explorer and featured not enough actually happening. A prohibitive part of the book was Bren hearing about what had happened recently on the planet, and there wasn't enough emphasis on his decisions, movements and interactions. It's a complex setting and story that's unfolding, but this novel felt like an underwhelming segment in the larger block.

Worse than: Explorer by C. J. Cherryh
Better than: Foreigner by C. J. Cherryh

5-0 out of 5 stars Hah!
Slow moving? That review was written by idiots. In 30 years of reading science fiction, I have to say that there has never been such a whirlwind of writing as C. J. Cherryh. She is utterly brilliant, to the point that I often suggest that people start with her early work and read up, lest they be overwhelmed. You may need to read a book two or three times to catch everythign that she is saying. There is no book by this author not worth reading. The only thing close is 40,00 in Gehenna, which is more purely sociological than will appeal to some readers.

4-0 out of 5 stars Amazing how quickly seven volumes can go by!
Bren Cameron, the paidhi-aiji to the leader of the atevi, and two years before appointed Lord of the Heavens so he could be sent out to deal with the unknown aliens at a distant Pilots Guild-run space station, is looking forward to a long vacation when he and his staff break out of hyperspace near the atevi home planet. But the returning starship finds things chaotic on the station, and it's all because a coup took place shortly after their departure and Tabini, the aiji, hasn't been seen for months. Is he dead? Or just waiting for the ship to return? Because Bren, after long, hard thought, has to admit that much of the cultural tension that led to the revolt (assisted by rival clan ambitions) was indirectly his fault. The conservatives don't like all the changes their society has undergone, nor the speed with which it has all happened. But Bren also knows that none of that could be helped, not if both atevi and humans were to survive. But to make his case, he has to get himself, the dowager (Tabini's slightly scary and very astute grandmother), and the aiji's young heir down to the planet and over to the mainland. Among the atevi, a leader has to lead from the front, and that's where Bren has to be while he tries to make contact with his boss -- if he's still alive. This seventh volume in the saga has overtones of a parachute drop behind enemy lines in World War II, with stolen farm trucks, allies picked up as they can, and a firefight at the climax. The politics -- which Cherryh lays out in very great detail -- can be difficult to follow, and will probably bore readers with less patience, but I enjoy the sociopolitical cut-and-thrust and the paidhi's struggle to understand the web of clan allegiances and the effects of manchi on alliances. An absorbing series.One small annoyance, though: Michael Whelan, whose work I have always enjoyed, has been doing all the cover paintings, but for this volume he has, for some reason, changed the style considerably. I liked the somewhat stylized rendering of the atevi on the earlier covers -- but now, suddenly, they have faces of a different shape and their hair is in corn-rows, for chrissakes.

4-0 out of 5 stars Bren: Trouble's my middle name.
Bren and his associates return home to discover that Tabini has been usurped by a former rival he was persuaded by Bren not to eliminate, a state of affairs made possible by general Atevi discontent at the pace of change which has impacted their man'chi and traditions, and with Bren and his Humankind on the Mosphieran enclave, the focus of blame.

Given the backdrop to this title I found the attention to courtly behaviour and sensibilities to be verging on the intrusive. The mainland is supposed to be in upheaval, after all. So Illisidi's leisurely trisection of her egg, Bren's recurring concern about the starchiness of his lace, and the need to get in-flight catering underway during shuttle descent, for example, tended toward an unwelcome distraction, even though such details do, in the end, embellish the cultural aspects of theproceedings.

Interesting thoughts about inter-clan concerns, the impact of well-intentioned government interference in the economy, and how an external influence can heighten problems. Those interested in reading about such things in more detail, may wish to consider the following suggestions.

Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn: Liberty or Equality.
Hans Herman Hoppe: Democracy, the God that failed.
Bertrand De Jouvenel: The Ethics of Redistribution

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Bren and his Atevi comrades return from their latest mission to find the Atevi homeworld in chaos and the space station they had relied on, cut off from the planet. Together with the prince and the dowager, they travel in secret back to the planet to start a rebellion.

I'm a big fan of these novels. Bren is an interesting and likeable character. I particularly like how Cherryh handles his relationships. He is very dedicated and married to his job. He really has no human friends except for his brother. I like the prince and was sad he never got to celebrate his birthday. I find the dowager a trifle annoying but at times amusing. Please. Get rid of Barb.

This was an exciting addition to the Foreigner series. ... Read more

18. Downbelow Station: The Company Wars (Daw Books Collectors)
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 352 Pages (2008-12-02)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$8.67
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756405505
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The Hugo Award-winning classic, now available in a trade edition for the first time.

Pell’s Station, orbiting the alien world simply called Downbelow, had always managed to remain neutral in the ever escalating conflict between “The Company,” whose fleets from Earth had colonized space, and its increasingly independent and rebellious colony worlds. But Pell’s location—on the outer edge of Earth’s defensive perimeter— makes her the focal point in the titanic battle of colony worlds fighting for independence… ... Read more

Customer Reviews (45)

3-0 out of 5 stars Solidly entertaining, but lacks depth
AD 2352. Humanity is divided into two factions, the Company which rules over Earth and the Sol system, and the Union, which rules over the outer colonies and worlds. In between are a narrow band of independent stations, nominally loyal to the Company but open to all traders and merchants. For years the Company and Union have been at war, but Earth's appetite for conflict is dwindling. In the end they have withdrawn practical support for their offensive fleet under Captain Mazian, leaving him a rogue agent whose goals and loyalties are suspect.

Caught in the middle of these turbulent times is Pell Station, circling the planet Downbelow in the Tau Ceti system. The closest independent station to Earth, it is a logical place for refugees from the warzone to flee to, straining resources to the limit. The Konstantin family which controls Pell Station struggles against the competing demands of Mazian's fleet, the refugees, the station's existing complement and the Company, and must also guard against infiltration from the Union, whose vast resources are finally gaining the upper hand in the conflict.

Downbelow Station was originally published in 1981, winning the Hugo Award for Best Novel the following year. It seems to be regarded as the best entry-point for Cherryh's Alliance-Union setting, a vast future history spanning centuries of mankind's expansion into space and its division between different factions, and the various conflicts it faces. The setting encompasses several dozen novels published out of chronological order and divided into confusing sub-series, making it perhaps the serious SF counterpart to Terry Pratchett's Discworld work in being slightly daunting for newcomers. Luckily, Downbelow Station makes a solid starting point for those interested in exploring the setting.

The novel is classic space opera. An opening prologue sets out the history of humanity's expansion into space and the background of the Company Wars before we are dropped straight into the action, with the personnel of Pell Station, the mining settlement on Downbelow and the carrier Norway all struggling to handle the refugee crisis. Cherryh successfully gives the impression that this is an ongoing story and history, where we are simply dropping in to observe a crucial moment and are then pulled out again at the end. This process works quite well.

Overall, the book is solid, with some interesting characters who are drawn with depth, but where what is left unsaid about them (particularly Mazian, Mallory and Josh) is as important as what is. There's also a nice inversion of cliche, with an initial figure who appears to be the typical bureaucratic buffoon is later revealed as a more intelligent and interesting character. There is also a fair amount of ruthlessness in the book, with major characters disposed of with little forewarning, but also a reasonable amount of humanity and warmth. Cherryh has a reputation for creating interesting alien races, and whilst the native 'Downers' of Downbelow initially simplistic, they rapidly become better-drawn as the story proceeds as their full potential emerges, even if they're not really all that 'alien'.

On the minus side, after the initial burst of action accompanying the refugee fleet's arrival, the novel takes a good 200 pages or so to fully work up to speed. During this period the book becomes bogged down in Cherryh's sometimes odd prose and dialogue structures (terse, short sentences short on description are favoured throughout). The lack of description extends to the worldbuilding and even space combat. We are given very little information on what weapons the ships use in battles (mentions of chaff suggest missiles, but we are never told that for sure), whilst the economic structure of the merchant ships and the independent stations appears under-developed. Those used to the immense, Tolkien-in-space-style SF worldbuilding of modern SF authors like Peter F. Hamilton and, to a lesser extent, Alastair Reynolds, may find the thinness of the setting somewhat unconvincing (at least at this early stage). In addition, Cherryh's use of technology is somewhat inconsistent. None of the humans use implants, there are no AIs or robots, and everyone taps commands manually into computer consoles, yet at the same time there are also sophisticated memory-altering techniques and FTL drives.

Downbelow Station (***½) is ultimately a good novel and an intriguing introduction into what could be an interesting SF setting. However, it suffers from occasionally obtuse writing and some unconvincing worldbuilding, and it certainly isn't better than The Claw of the Conciliator, The Many-Coloured Land and Little, Big (the books it trounced to win the Hugo). The novel is available now in the USA, but has no current UK edition. Imported copies are available via Amazon.

4-0 out of 5 stars Downbelow is a cut above
The future arrives and Earth is left behind.Those who adapt to the changes that the discovery of new worlds brings survive and prosper.Cherryh's universe is dark, damp and dangerous.A good read for futurists.

1-0 out of 5 stars Awful! Just Plain Awful!
There have only been a few books that I've ever stopped reading.This is one of them.I was excited to start the book.It won a feakin' Hugo Award.It must be good.Right?

NOT!The writing is horrible.The story is told in such a confusing manner that I really never made a connection with anyone and those that I ran into more than once, I could care less about.The story starts with an explanation of the universe, which is vague and far too long.Then in Chapter 2 the action starts and NOTHING IS EVER EXPLAINED AGAIN!The action consists of people walking to and from meetings and talking mostly about insignificant items.Please, someone explain to me how this piece of trash won a Hugo?Was everything else that year that bad?This was the era where Heinlein, Clarke, Pohl, Williamson, and Assimov were still actively writing.And this won a Hugo?

I stopped after 160 pages and put myself out of my misery and moved on to the latest Varley novel, which was a breath of fresh air.

2-0 out of 5 stars A political slog
Downbelow Station starts with a fairly long future history describing humanity's exploration of space, beginning with the establishment of space stations around nearby stars and leading to the farthest space colonies forming their own government called the "Union".After this tedious start, the rest of the book describes conflicts between various entities: political factions on Pell (a space station orbiting a habitable planet); the Union; Earth's military fleet (which has gone rogue and is no longer under Earth's control); "The Corporation" which is the governing body of Earth; the primitive aliens on Pell's planet; and the space merchants.

This is at best a moderately entertaining story and it's puzzling why it won the Hugo for best novel.The book has very little action, no particularly sweeping vision of the future, no fascinating technologies, and even the primitive aliens are neither all that alien or very interesting.The entire book consists of politics, mostly involving who's in charge of Pell; first it's one political faction, then the other, then it's the Fleet, then Union...In the meantime many of the main characters just run around hiding and getting caught.

The book is full of dead ends: we have a Union spy who is abruptly killed off without really ever doing anything; the aliens help the humans on the planet escape the invading Fleet to a place of refuge, only to be rounded up again as soon as they get there; we have this mysterious bedridden matron whose viewpanels give her all-seeing access everywhere on Pell, but she ends up not doing anything at all; we have equally mysterious wise alien "Elders" on the planet below who end up being useless.

In fact frankly nothing much happens at all, and after slogging through to the end, the story is wrapped up with the formation of an alliance between several of the factions (in other words, more politics).

On top of this the writing style is not very elegant, to put it mildly; in fact I often found myself re-reading sentences to try and figure them out.

I happen to have NOT read any of the other novels nominated in 1982 for the Hugo.If this is the best of them, I'm not sure I want to.

1-0 out of 5 stars Space station, refugees arrive, nothing else happens.
This is the plot of this book:
Space station, refugees arrive, nothing else happens.

This is DULL, DULL, DULL. Characters: FLAT. Plot: NONEXISTENT.

Stay away. Read the other 1 star reviews if you are still not convinced. I simply do not understand how this book won any award.
In the tag suggestions for the review amazon suggests among others: adventure. ADVENTURE??? You will not find it in this book. It is set in a space station where refugees arrive. In the end nothing is resolved. No conclusion to the story, no plot, no character development. ADVENTURE?! LOL. ... Read more

19. The Chanur Saga
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 704 Pages (2000-05-01)
list price: US$8.99 -- used & new: US$5.01
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0886779308
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Here, for the first time in one volume, is C.J. Cherryh's classic adventure of interstellar politics, a spacefaring fugitive, and first contact with a strange race known as "humans."

"Cherryh has given us an alien psychology story, and has done a grand job. It is a mark of Cherryh's success that here it is the human who seems alien."--Analog ... Read more

Customer Reviews (28)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Chanur Saga
Nice compact edition of the first three books. Print is a little small so you might need reading glasses.

5-0 out of 5 stars Cherryh is the master of this universe!
We are dropped into a wholly formed and fully functioning universe where all we can do is hang on and enjoy the ride. And enjoy it I did. Some parts are described and some are left to the reader's imagination. The technology, the day to day life on the Pride, the glimpse of life on the Home World. So much to amaze and astound. Totally alien and yet accessible by us soft and vulnerable humans thanks to Cherryh's deft and incredible creation of dialogue and inter-species relationships. Deals and double-crosses abound to the point we forget we're dealing with aliens. At least till we (and they) need the translator to understand what's going on. And let's not forget the Methane Breathers. Who knows what's going on with them? Just don't get in their way when they leave the station!
Bottom line: Great characters, great story. It would be fantastic as an animated movie but, maybe it's better to only imagine...

5-0 out of 5 stars Chanur essentials for new readers
First of all, let's sort out the muddle of editions of the five Chanur novels: One through three are in The Chanur Saga; four and five are in The Chanur Engame. Both books are in print as of January 2009. A bewildering variety of single novels are floating around both in print and second hand. Fuggeddaboutdem.

The Chanur saga is space opera (in the most complimentary sense) about interstellar commerce and political intrigue, from the point of view of one species, the Hani, intelligent, aggressive traders suggested by Terrestrial Lions. They compete with three other oxygen-breathing species and two (or maybe three) methane breathers, not to mention the (very occasional) human. The methane breathers are a mystery to everyone, but the four Oxy breathing species are expertly created and differentiated, physically, culturally, and linguistically (In every case, the alien names that drive me nuts in other books -- you know, Brxngth and the like -- grow naturally out of the languages of each species, and even their common discourse (often in trade pigeon) reflects their respective languages and psychologies. (Case in point, the feline Hani's versions of filler sounds like um and well evoke the coughs of lions.) Ms. Cherryh also avoids the tedious overuse of neologisms for alien concepts and things (you know: "She could not begin her tadranath before the threnknode was over.")

Contrary to opinions in a few other reviews, Ms. Cherryh writes some of the most exact, effective, and eloquent prose found anywhere in Science Fiction. (Compared to hers, Heinlein's prose is competent plodding.) The Chanur story line trips along at a good, readable pace, and the author knows exactly when to add background and color (and what and how much) and when to get on with the action.

But it is the juggling of seven -- count 'em -- seven vividly realized alien species that makes this series a tour de force. Like many other readers, I wish Ms. Cherryh would send Hilfy Chanur out of her own star cluster and turn her loose among the humans. The results would be priceless.

1-0 out of 5 stars Should not be classified as an English language novel
This is the second book in my entire lifetime that I have abandoned part way through. I simply realized about 5 pages into the second "book" of the bound trilogy that my time was more valuable to me than the idea of getting something in exchange for the money I paid for the book.

The story is sparse and the number of pages plentiful. But the biggest problem is the writing itself. I couldn't even stand all the slang in Steinbeck, and this author is no Steinbeck.I can understand wanting to create a flavor for a character, to get across that the culture is very brusque, direct, and prone to insulting people within every interaction, even interactions that are supposed to be friendly (think high school jocks in space, dressed as lionesses).But after that is communicated, definitely by page 300 or so, does the author have to go on offering us choppy sentences that are missing most of the parts of speech we rely upon within the English language to convey full meaning?It is simply unpleasant to read such poor English usage for hundreds of pages. Combine that with the sparse plot, meaning very little is actually happening other than verbal exchanges among characters, and you get an altogether annoying waste of time and money.

2-0 out of 5 stars A big disappointment.
Alien species designed to appeal to reader love of cats? Check.
Alternative gender roles which should make us consider our own bias? Check.
Strange alien species with motivations outside human ken? Check.
Outside-in view of humans? Check.
Plucky underdog pilot fighting both her own politics and the rest of the universe besides? Check.
Realistic seeming science and linguistics? Check.
Inscrutable and unloveable alien race made up of giant bugs? Check.

If I love C.J. Cherryh so much, then why did this feel like a pastiche of the better elements of her other books? I have been circling back to pick up all the Cherryh that I had somehow missed, and the Chanur books came highly recommended. But, really, I was bored. The basic story tropes repeated themselves in the three books. The developments were predictable, and I never once felt really surprised by anything.

Also, immensely frustrating that the publishers felt the need to bind these three books (The Pride of Chanur, Chanur's Venture, and The Kif Strike Back) together. The Kif Strike Back was clearly not written as a natural break point in the series and after plowing through 694 pages of ragged ears and observations about Hani minds, I was left with a cliff-hanger. Too bad I was not left with any desire to pick up the concluding two novels.

Skip this one, and read Cyteen or The Faded Sun Trilogy instead. ... Read more

20. Explorer (Foreigner Universe)
by C. J. Cherryh
Paperback: 528 Pages (2003-11-04)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0756401313
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The final installment to this sequence of the Hugo Award-winning author's most successful series. Explorer follows a human delegate trapped in a distant star system facing a potentially bellicose alien ship. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (27)

5-0 out of 5 stars Here, have a brochure . . .
This is the final volume in the second trilogy of what is becoming Cherryh's magnum opus -- and this is only the halfway point. Having been told by the late Senior Captain Ramirez just before his death that Reunion Station wasn't destroyed after all, only damaged, and that the autocratic, xenophobic Pilot's Guild is probably still in charge there, the starship Phoenix knows it must return, not only to rescue those left behind, but also to destroy anything that might lead "the other aliens" to the atevi world. Not only that, the aiji is sending his grandmother, the formidable Ilisidi, to represent him, as well as his six-year-old heir, and Bren Cameron, the human paidi, will accompany the atevi party on its two-year mission. And there will be a contingent of Mospheiran humans, as well. Lots of ways things could go wrong with that many disparate elements, and many of them do, but they also learn to cooperate. And Bren gets to practice his original trade as translator in dealing with the ship they find parked near the damaged station, and he does a very creditable and ingenious job, making full use of his atevi resources -- including a highly cinematic grenade-delivery via the heir's toy cars. I particularly like the way the Good Guys get around the station's control of communications by printing up full-color illustrated brochures! Line up the next few volumes and just keep going!

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Sci-fi
Bren and his Atevi bodyguards, (Atevi are a race of super tall dark-skinned aliens) travel to a distant space station to rescue some stranded humans. When they arrive they discover things at the space station aren't what they seem. Can Bren get to the bottom of the strange alien presence or will the delegation be caught inside a battle zone?

As usual, Cherryh writes an excellent sci-fi novel. Her world-building is extremely well done and each character is well articulated. I did get a bit tired of the `humans are to blame for everything' attitude that is an underlying theme in these novels. Only humans seem to make mistakes, and if there is a war or a problem it is doubtless the result of ignorant humans. Sometimes I'd like to see one catastrophe that humans WEREN'T responsible for. Also, at times the dowager is a bit of a mary-sue. I like the character, but not every book. Overall, this was a great book which had me on the edge of my seat.5 stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Foreigner Sevies Review
I consider Cherryh to be the premier science fiction writer I have read and enjoyed, since starting as a sub-teenager, back in the 1950s.The entire Foreigner series, to date, as there appear to be some more on the way, is absolutely outstanding.When I read the last book in the sequence, I went an ordered the entier set to date.And have enjoyed each and every one as well as the first and latest!If you have not read them, start at the beginning and be prepared to buy, read and retain each and every one.I am posting this verbatum on the other two requested Foreigner series books I have been given the opportunity for which to review!

5-0 out of 5 stars The End of the Second Foreigner Trilogy
First of all, I started reading the Foreigner series in the library, then when I had finished the first trilogy, I went to the main branch of the library and lo and behold, were two books from a second Foreigner series. Having thoroughly enjoyed the first trilogy, I read them and learned that there was a final book in the trilogy, which I immediately ordered off of Ebay(no offense Amazon.com). It was everything the other books were, and more. An extremely well drawn alien society. With just the right mix of drama, suspense and then action.

The story is that the paidhi-aiji has finally arrived at Reunion station. However, as they thought, rescuing the stationers would not be easy...

3-0 out of 5 stars he or she?
umm, C.J. Cherryh is a WOMAN.http://www.cherryh.com/www/menu.htm

as to the book itself, i thought it was better than average but not as good as the Chanur novels or 'Downbelow Station'.an improvement on the previous foreigner books but she still mistakes dithering for decision making, a common failing in many of her novels. ... Read more

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