Fool's War

Open Road Media
7
Free sample

A New York Times Notable Book from the author of Reclamation: A young woman must face off against an alien force within her starship’s computer.

Katmer Al Shei has done well with the starship Pasadena, cutting corners where necessary to keep her crew paid and her journeys profitable. But there are two things she will never skimp on: her crew and her fool. For a long space journey, a certified Fool’s Guild clown is essential to amuse, excite, and otherwise distract the crew from the drudgeries of interstellar flight. Her newest fool, Evelyn Dobbs, is a talented jester. But does she have enough wit to save mankind?
 
In the computers of the Pasadena, something is emerging. The highly sophisticated software that makes interstellar travel practical is playing host to a new form of artificial intelligence, a living entity. And it will do whatever it takes to survive . . .
 
Displaying “the influence of Asimov’s robot stories and C. J. Cherryh’s elaborate, sophisticated spaceship adventures,” this is a science fiction masterpiece that asks the thought-provoking question, “What if the next great life-form with which we must contend isn’t from the stars but from our hard drives?” (Publishers Weekly)
 
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About the author

Sarah Zettel is the critically acclaimed author of more than twenty novels, spanning the full range of genre fiction. Her debut novel, Reclamation, won the Locus Award for Best First Novel. Her second release, Fool’s War, was a 1997 New York Times Notable Book, and the American Library Association named Playing God one of the Best Books for Young Adults of 1999. Her novel Bitter Angels won the Philip K. Dick Award for best science fiction paperback in 2009. Her latest novel, Dust Girl, was named as one of the best young adult books of the year by both Kirkus Reviews and the American Library Association. Zettel lives in Michigan with her husband, her rapidly growing son, and her cat, Buffy the Vermin Slayer. 
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4.4
7 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
May 21, 2013
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Pages
455
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ISBN
9781480422193
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Science Fiction / Action & Adventure
Fiction / Science Fiction / Space Opera
Fiction / Women
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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This fast-paced, gritty space adventure introduces the unforgettable Skeen, a hard-edged heroine and intergalactic thief trapped in an unknown universe.
 
Jo Clayton, creator of the popular Diadem Saga, introduces a delightfully unforgettable new character—a tough, sexy, futuristic tomb raider Lara Croft with issues—and sets her loose in a wild and woolly galaxy of dastardly villains, alien shape-shifters, and all manner of strange sentient life-forms.
 
Skeen is a bandit and a rogue, a master thief wanted throughout myriad solar systems for plundering the rare antiquities of countless alien civilizations while always keeping one rocket ship–length ahead of the intergalactic law. A “rooner” with a dark past, she now finds herself penniless and abandoned on a miserable backwater planet, at the tail end of a string of very bad luck, with no option except to follow unreliable rumors to a supposed fortune in gems hidden among ancient ruins. What she finds instead is a gateway into another world—and a universe of trouble.
 
Now, trapped in a strange new reality with no way out, Skeen must find the key to reopening the portal, and that will entail making contact with the mysterious aliens who created the interdimensional passageway. But the enigmatic Ykx vanished eons ago, and finding representatives of a highly advanced and possibly extinct extraterrestrial race is not going to be easy for the silver-tongued lone wolf outlaw. It doesn’t help that Skeen’s entourage keeps expanding by leaps and bounds with unwanted hangers-on whose interference could end up damning her to an eternity in nowhere.
 
The first book in a thrilling trilogy featuring the inimitable Skeen, Skeen’s Leap cements Clayton’s well-deserved reputation as one of the premier purveyors of science fantasy, alongside Andre Norton, C. J. Cherryh, and Marion Zimmer Bradley. Wry, witty, and wondrously inventive, featuring a colorful cast of delightful and deliciously weird alien types, it is a space opera romp guaranteed to transport genre aficionados to new and wondrous worlds.
Finalist for the Hugo Award • “Ofelia—tough, kind, wise and unwise, fond of food, tired of foolish people—is one of the most probable heroines science fiction has ever known.”—Ursula K. Le Guin

For forty years, Colony 3245.12 has been Ofelia’s home. On this planet far away in space and time from the world of her youth, she has lived and loved, weathered the death of her husband, raised her one surviving child, lovingly tended her garden, and grown placidly old. And it is here that she fully expects to finish out her days—until the shifting corporate fortunes of the Sims Bancorp Company dictates that Colony 3245.12 is to be disbanded, its residents shipped off, deep in cryo-sleep, to somewhere new and strange and not of their choosing. But while her fellow colonists grudgingly anticipate a difficult readjustment on some distant world, Ofelia savors the promise of a golden opportunity. Not starting over in the hurly-burly of a new community . . . but closing out her life in blissful solitude, in the place she has no intention of leaving. A population of one.

With everything she needs to sustain her, and her independent spirit to buoy her, Ofelia actually does start life over–for the first time on her own terms: free of the demands, the judgments, and the petty tyrannies of others. But when a reconnaissance ship returns to her idyllic domain, and its crew is mysteriously slaughtered, Ofelia realizes she is not the sole inhabitant of her paradise after all. And, when the inevitable time of first contact finally arrives, she will find her life changed yet again—in ways she could never have imagined. . . .

“Pure satisfaction from cover to cover.”—Anne McCaffrey
Abandoned on an alien planet, a young woman gains remarkable powers from a mysterious artifact, in the first installment of a sprawling, unforgettable science fiction saga.
 
A magnificent combination of space opera and epic fantasy quest in the beloved science fantasy tradition of Andre Norton and C. J. Cherryh, author Jo Clayton’s masterful Diadem Saga begins with an unforgettable tale of destiny, self-discovery, survival, and an extraordinary young woman’s coming of age in a world that is not her own.
 
Raised, but never loved, by the barbarian valley people of Jaydugar, a planet of two suns, young Aleytys has always known she did not belong. Abandoned by her space-traveling mother and barely tolerated by a superstitious primitive tribe fearful of divine reprisals, Aleytys is forced to flee for her life following the catastrophic appearance of a fireball in the sky. Guided by her absent mother’s journals, the young outcast must now journey alone across an unfamiliar world of perils in search of an escape from this planet that holds no hope for her future.
 
But her pursuit of a spacecraft and the parent who inexplicably left her behind leads young Aleytys instead to the miraculous device that will determine her destiny. An object of unimaginable power—a magical technology stolen from a vengeful alien arachnid race determined to recover it at any cost—the Diadem instantly becomes an integral part of who and what Aleytys is and will be. Once its great energy is transferred to her she will never be free of it, and mastering the Diadem’s wonders is Aleytys’s only hope for survival now that she has become the most wanted woman in a dangerous universe.
 
In an astonishing feat of science fiction world-building and quest fantasy storytelling that rivals the classic works of Mercedes Lackey, Anne McCaffrey, and Marion Zimmer Bradley, Clayton opens wide the portals into a magnificent galaxy of marvels and terrors with Diadem from the Stars, ushering speculative fiction fans into an unforgettable universe and series.
NOW THE ACCLAIMED HBO SERIES GAME OF THRONES—THE MASTERPIECE THAT BECAME A CULTURAL PHENOMENON
 
Winter is coming. Such is the stern motto of House Stark, the northernmost of the fiefdoms that owe allegiance to King Robert Baratheon in far-off King’s Landing. There Eddard Stark of Winterfell rules in Robert’s name. There his family dwells in peace and comfort: his proud wife, Catelyn; his sons Robb, Brandon, and Rickon; his daughters Sansa and Arya; and his bastard son, Jon Snow. Far to the north, behind the towering Wall, lie savage Wildings and worse—unnatural things relegated to myth during the centuries-long summer, but proving all too real and all too deadly in the turning of the season.
 
Yet a more immediate threat lurks to the south, where Jon Arryn, the Hand of the King, has died under mysterious circumstances. Now Robert is riding north to Winterfell, bringing his queen, the lovely but cold Cersei, his son, the cruel, vainglorious Prince Joffrey, and the queen’s brothers Jaime and Tyrion of the powerful and wealthy House Lannister—the first a swordsman without equal, the second a dwarf whose stunted stature belies a brilliant mind. All are heading for Winterfell and a fateful encounter that will change the course of kingdoms.
 
Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, Prince Viserys, heir of the fallen House Targaryen, which once ruled all of Westeros, schemes to reclaim the throne with an army of barbarian Dothraki—whose loyalty he will purchase in the only coin left to him: his beautiful yet innocent sister, Daenerys.
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