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"Come find what you have lost. . . " Heeding this cryptic message from deep space, the crew of the starship Restoration journeys from Earth to a distant planet, hoping to find humanity's lost genetic diversity. But with the human race on the verge of extinction from the twin horrors of plague and a mysterious scourge of dark matter, how can an alien world harbor any remedies for Earth's declining populations? Worse, the Restoration arrives depleted: its captain is dead, its crew demoralized--except for an indomitable old woman whose power and wealth give her the privilege of naming the new captain. Anton Prados, a young, untested officer, will now preside over humanity's first contact with an alien race. An alien race that, improbably, looks exactly like humans. Only, the Dassa possess highly unusual breeding habits--and a reproductive process that seems to be the nullification of all that is human. And they think much the same about humanity... From the Paperback edition.
Kay Kenyon, noted for her science fiction world-building, has in this new series created her most vivid and compelling society, the Universe Entire. In a land-locked galaxy that tunnels through our own, the Entire is a bizarre and seductive mix of long-lived quasi-human and alien beings gathered under a sky of fire, called the bright. A land of wonders, the Entire is sustained by monumental storm walls and an exotic, never-ending river. Over all, the elegant and cruel Tarig rule supreme. Into this rich milieu is thrust Titus Quinn, former star pilot, bereft of his beloved wife and daughter who are assumed dead by everyone on earth except Quinn. Believing them trapped in a parallel universe--one where he himself may have been imprisoned--he returns to the Entire without resources, language, or his memories of that former life. He is assisted by Anzi, a woman of the Chalin people, a Chinese culture copied from our own universe and transformed by the kingdom of the bright. Learning of his daughter's dreadful slavery, Quinn swears to free her. To do so, he must cross the unimaginable distances of the Entire in disguise, for the Tarig are lying in wait for him. As Quinn's memories return, he discovers why. Quinn's goal is to penetrate the exotic culture of the Entire--to the heart of Tarig power, the fabulous city of the Ascendancy, to steal the key to his family's redemption. But will his daughter and wife welcome rescue? Ten years of brutality have forced compromises on everyone. What Quinn will learn to his dismay is what his own choices were, long ago, in the Universe Entire. He will also discover why a fearful multiverse destiny is converging on him and what he must sacrifice to oppose the coming storm. This is high-concept SF written on the scale of Philip Jose Farmer's Riverworld, Roger Zelazny's Amber Chronicles, and Dan Dimmons's Hyperion.
In this series Kay Kenyon has created her most vivid and compelling society yet, the universe Entire. Reviewers have called this "a grand world," "an enormous stage," and "a bravura concept."On this stage unfolds a mighty struggle for dominance between two universes. Titus Quinn has forged an unstable peace with the Tarig lords. The ruinous capability of the nanotech surge weapon he possesses ensures détente. But it is a sham. In what the godwoman Zhiya calls "a fit of moral goodness," he's thrown the weapon into the space-folding waters of the Nigh. This clears the way for an enemy he could have never foreseen: the people of the Rose. A small cadre led by Helice Maki is determined to take the Entire for itself and leave the earth in ruins. The transform of earth will begin deep in a western desert and will sweep over the lives of ordinary people, entangling Quinn's sister-in-law Caitlin in a deepening and ultimate conspiracy.In the Entire, Quinn stalks Helice to the fabled Rim City, encircling the heart of the Entire. Here he at last finds his daughter, now called Sen Ni, in the Chalin style. Outside of earth-based time, she has grown to adulthood. He hardly knows her, and finds her the mistress of a remarkable dream-time insurgency against the Tarig lords--and more, a woman risen high in the Entire's meritocracy. Quinn needs his daughter's help against the woman who would destroy the earth. But Sen Ni has her own plans and allies, among them a boy-navitar unlike any other pilot of the River Nigh--a navitar willing and supremely able to break his vows and bend the world. Quinn casts his fate with the beautiful and resourceful Ji Anzi who--sent on a journey to other realms--holds the key to Quinn's heart and his overarching mission. But as he approaches the innermost sanctuary of the Tarig, he is alone. Waiting for him are powerful adversaries, including a lady who both hates and loves him, the high prefect of the dragon court, and Quinn's most implacable enemy, a warrior whose chaotic mind will soon be roused from an eternal slumber.
Zoya Kundara has lived on the space vessel Star Road for two hundred fifty years. As its Ship Mother, kept alive in a state of pseudoimmortality, she has provided wisdom and counsel to succeeding generations of its crew, self-exiled survivors of earth's great plague. But now, to escape the ravages of space radiation, the giant starship has returned to earth, only to discover a world on the verge of extinction, its barren surface blanketed in a crystalline substance that resembles ice and that is slowly, inexorably encapsulating the planet. Zoya is chosen as emissary to this strange new earth, and now she must approach its denizens and find a suitable home for her desperate crew among the shrinking lands. But what she finds shakes Zoya to her core: groups of humans huddled like moles in underground techno-warrens called preserves, and a pseudospiritual order known as the Ice Nuns, who seek control of the physics-defying crystals and enslave their disciples in their crazed quest for truth. For on this once green land, Ice and the science behind it are now the only God-and mastering this grand ecology of information the only higher calling. Allies are few and far between, but somehow Zoya must uncover the secrets of Ice and halt its expansion. That is, if the snow witches don't get her first. . . From the Paperback edition.
. . . a splendid fantasy quest as compelling as anything by Stephen R. Donaldson, Philip Jose Farmer or, yes, J. R. R. Tolkien. --The Washington PostReminiscent of the groundbreaking novels of Philip K. Dick, Philip Jose Farmer, and Dan Simmons. --Library JournalKay Kenyon's Bright of the Sky and just-released A World Too Near feature a brilliant SF setting that rivals Larry Niven's Ringworld and Philip Jose Farmer's Riverworld series for sheer inventon, advneture, complexity and sense of wonder. --OmnivoraciousOne of the most imaginative creations in recent science fiction history. --SFSiteIN THIS SERIES KAY KENYON HAS CREATED HER MOST VIVID AND COMPELLING SOCIETY YET, THE UNIVERSE ENTIRE. REVIEWERS HAVE CALLED THIS A GRAND WORLD, AN ENORMOUS STAGE, AND A BRAVURA CONCEPT. Finally in control of the Ascendancy, Titus Quinn has styled himself Regent of the Entire. But his command is fragile. He rules an empire with a technology beyond human understanding; spies lurk in the ancient Magisterium; the Tarig overlords are hamstrung but still malevolent. Worse, his daughter Sen Ni opposes him for control, believing the Earth and its Rose universe must die to sustain the failing Entire. She is aided by one of the mystical pilots of the River Nigh, the space-time transport system. This navitar, alone among all others, can alter future events. He retires into a crystal chamber in the Nigh to weave reality and pit his enemies against each other. Taking advantage of these chaotic times, the great foe of the Long War, the Jinda ceb Horat, create a settlement in the Entire. Masters of supreme technology, they maintain a lofty distance from the Entire's struggle. They agree, however, that the Tarig must return to the fiery Heart of their origins. With the banishment immanent, some Tarig lords rebel, fleeing to hound the edges of Quinn's reign. Meanwhile, Quinn's wife Anzi becomes a hostage and penitent among the Jinda ceb, undergoing alterations that expose their secrets, but may estrange her from her husband. As Quinn moves toward a confrontation with the dark navitar, he learns that the stakes of the conflict go far beyond the Rose versus the Entire--extending to a breathtaking dominance. The navitar commands forces that lie at the heart of the Entire's geo-cosmology, and will use them to alter the calculus of power. As the navitar's plan approaches consummation, Quinn, Sen Ni, and Anzi are swept up in forces that will leave them forever changed. In this rousing finale to Kenyon's celebrated quartet, Titus Quinn meets an inevitable destiny, forced at last to make the unthinkable choice for or against the dictates of his heart, for or against the beloved land. Kay Kenyon, nominated for the Philip K. Dick and the John W. Campbell awards, began her writing career in Duluth, Minnesota as a copywriter for radio and TV. She is the author of nine sf/f novels including Bright of the Sky, A World Too Near, and City Without End. Recent short stories appeared in Fast Forward 2 and The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction, Vol. Two. Her work has been translated into French, Russian, Spanish and Czech. When not writing, she encourages newcomers to the field through workshops, a writing e-newsletter, and a conference in eastern Washington State, Write on the River, of which she is chair. She lives in Wenatchee, WA with her husband. Visit her online at www. kaykenyon. com
There is a fine line between transformation and ruin....Twenty-four-year-old Reeve Calder has spent his life on a high-tech space station, watching as terraforming gradually fails on his home planet of Lithia--a failure that has doomed the colonists stranded there to short, brutish lives. Reeve's dream has always been to rebuild Lithia. But when a mysterious explosion destroys the station, forcing Reeve to crash-land on Lithia's blood-hued soil, he soon learns that the reality of saving a dying planet is quite different from what he imagined. For Gabriel Bonhert, former captain of the space station, has set in motion a world cataclysm, using a fatal probe that will travel down the fiery pathway of a deep mantle plume.Now, to save the homeland he has never known, Reeve is caught in a race against time to reach Bonhert's base in the Rift Valley, a remote volcanic gateway to the hidden heart of Lithia. His staunchest ally may be a feral girl who alone seems enthralled by what Lithia is becoming, and whose enigmatic past holds the key to startling possibilities. As the old Lithia struggles to be reborn in a tide of toxic red flora creeping across the oxygen-starved planet, Reeve forges onward, coming into conflict with savage enclaves of colonists, a doomsday genemorphing cult, and a mysterious alien race with its own intentions for the planet--intentions that may include humanity's slavery or their terrible transformation....From the Paperback edition.
Clio Finn is a Dive pilot on a troubled Earth in 2019. Public paranoia about the AIDS virus and its successors has led to the imprisonment of the "subversives" of the society (namely, drug users and gays) in forced labor quarantine camps known as quarries. Meanwhile, Earth itself is dying from a progressive lack of greenery, as the UV irradiation from a successively depleted ozone layer is killing off all the plants, and therefore the planet's ability to sustain itself. To counteract this problem, the powers of Earth have decided that new greenery must be found on alternate worlds, to supplement Earth's dying stock with heartier, alien strains. But since faster-than-light travel is still unavailable, a new method must be found to achieve this. Enter time travel, in which a quick jaunt down through time can bring ships into the position of planets which had rotated through Earth's present position in the distant past, due to the galaxy's extended period of rotation.As most people are unable to remain awake during these temporal Dives, the guiding duty is left to an exclusive class of Dive pilots. Only dive pilots have a limited span before they burn out. Most can last thirty to forty Dives. Clio Finn has lasted fifty-five, and she is on the ragged end of burn-out, kept on track only by a handful of outlawed drugs. But the potential rewards are great. A previous haul of greenery, once thought to be Earth's salvation, is dying off, and an illicit jaunt into the future taken by Clio and her colleagues has discovered the violent end of humanity itself. So her current destination, Niang, an Edenic tropical planet, seems the answer to mankind's prayers. Only, on Niang's surface, Clio discovers a desperate secret. The green which may save mankind also subsists on metals, and may therefore destroy all of mankind's existing technology. Clio's dilemma--whether to regreen Earth at the risk of driving man back into the dark ages--is only exacerbated when an accidental loop in time catches her in a paradox between two alternate futures, each of which is determined to eradicate the other completely and absolutely.From the Paperback edition.
In the bloody war that ended between Th Congress Worlds and the alien ahtra, Captain Eli Dammond had distinguished himself as an officer who could no wrong--until his last catastrophic battle. Now, with his shining reputation tarnished, the commander finds himself assigned to a grimy kettle of a ship making basic transport missions. Routine work -until he arrives on Null: a barren, scorned world at the mercy of two suns. Here, a marooned human outpost has survived for three years until their rescue by Eli's ship. But on this austere planet, the human newcomers are about to learn a harsh lesson: that nothing is quite as it seems. For soon a new season will call forth a hidden ecology both exquisite and deadly. And Null will test the survivors in a fight no soldier was ever trained for, and few can predict - while a young the survivors in a fight no soldier was trained for, and few predict - while a young woman of privilege may well prove to be their finest warrior.Yet for Eli Dammond, the worst struggle will unfold below the surface. There he will discover a threat to all the settle human worlds, even as he matches wits an adversary both familiar and alien. The odds are against human survival on null's surface or indeed, in the galaxy-- unless Eli succeeds in bringing home the hard-won secret that neither human nor ahtra can hear.From the Paperback edition.
In Bright of the Sky, Kay Kenyon introduced a milieu unique in science fiction and fantasy: The Entire, a five-armed radial universe that exists in a dimension without stars and planets and is parallel to our own universe. Stretched over The Entire is a lid of plasma, called the bright, which ebbs and flows, bringing day and twilight. Under the vast canopy of the bright live many galactic species, copied from our own universe. Former star pilot Titus Quinn loves The Entire, but now he must risk annihilating it by destroying the fortress of Ahnenhoon. To sustain a faltering Entire, Ahnenhoon's great engine will soon reach through the brane separating the universes and consume our own universe in a concentrated ball of fire. Quinn sets off on a journey across The Entire armed with the nan, a small ankle bracelet containing nanoscale military technology that can reduce Ahnenhoon and its deadly engine to chaos. He must pursue his mission even though his wife is held prisoner in Ahnenhoon and his own daughter has sent the assassin MoTi to hunt him down. As he traverses the galactic distances of The Entire, he learns more of the secrets of its geography, its fragile storm walls, its eons-long history, and the factions that contend for dominance. One of these factions is led by his daughter, who though young and a slave, has at her command a transforming and revolutionary power. As Quinn wrestles with looming disaster and approaches the fabled concentric rings of Ahnenhoon's defenses, he learns that in the Entire, nothing is what it appears. Its denizens are all harboring secrets, and the greatest of these is the nature of the Entire itself.
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