Owen Deathstalker sacrificed his life to save all of humanity. In the hundred years since his passing, the Empire has prospered in a Golden Age of peace among aliens, humans, and AIs, with hope and liberty for all. Now, on the human homeworld of Logres, a new king is about to be crowned.
Douglas Campbell has no enthusiasm to ascend the throne. As a Paragon, he enforced the King’s Justice and so prefers the path of warrior to ruler. But as the sole remaining heir, he puts aside the desires of his heart and picks up the reins of duty. His first act upon being crowned is to select Lewis Deathstalker—Owen’s descendant—as his Champion and protector.
The new regime already has an insurmountable task before it: the Artificial Intelligences of Shub insist on entering the Madness Maze to uncover the secrets of transcendence that humanity has failed to do for hundreds of years—and they will not take no for an answer. But even more threatening is one man’s desire for a revenge that will unite all of the enemies of the Empire in an attempt to bring the Golden Age into ruin…
From the Paperback edition.