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It has been five years since humanity's heady expansion among the stars came to an abrupt, and violent, halt. The emergence of the Hydrogues, an immensely powerful alien race dwelling within gas-giant planets, has placed the scattered colonies of the Terran Hanseatic League in jeopardy. With space travel heavily curtailed, and supplies of fuel dwindling, young King Peter and Chairman Basil Wenceslas, the harsh power behind the throne, have no choice but to impose strict rationing. But the Hydrogues are not the only enemies of humanity. The scheming Mage-Imperator, leader of the ancient Ildiran Empire, attempts to forge tangled alliances among all combatants in order to protect his failing civilization. The mysterious Klikiss robots, only remnants of an extinct race, continue to work their sinister plans while pretending to be friends and advisors to the Hanseatic League. And archaeologists Margaret and Louis Colicos -- whose discovery of an ancient alien weapon accidentally triggered the Hydrogue conflict -- have vanished on the abandoned world of Rheindic Co. Rlinda Kett and Davlin Lotze, sent to investigate the disappearance, soon realise that the Colicos' discoveries may lead to an incredible new way to travel between worlds...or to the awakening of enemies even more fearsome than the Hydrogues. Something of inestimable power must have been required to destroy the Klikiss race. Will humanity be next?
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About the Author

Kevin J. Anderson has over 15 million books in print in 27 languages worldwide. He is the author of, among others, the X-FILES novels GROUND ZERO and the JEDI ACADEMY trilogy of STAR WARS novels - the three bestselling SF novels of 1994. He has also co-written the international bestselling prequels to Frank Herbert's monumental DUNE series. He has won, or been nominated for, many awards including the Nebula Award and the Bram Stoker Award.

Reviews

Five years after a scientific experiment aroused the anger of the hydrogues, a previously unknown race native to giant gas planets, the war between humans and hydrogues has resulted in a faltering economy for Earth and its colonies. With fuel for interstellar travel strictly controlled, the Terran Hanseatic League faces rebellion from some of its colonies. When Jess Tamblyn, an enterprising pilot of a nomadic group of spacefaring humans known as the Roamers, stumbles upon yet another new alien species, he discovers a potential ally against the hydrogues. Following the actions of a varied group of individuals, including the King of the Hanseatic League, a pair of archaeologists specializing in ancient alien civilizations, and a captive priestess of the World Trees, Anderson continues his epic tale of interstellar war and politics begun in Hidden Empire. Rapid-fire action and panoramic plotting make this a first-class space opera suitable for most sf collections. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Bestseller Anderson turns up the heat in his second Saga of the Seven Suns installment (after 2002's Hidden Empire), proving he has firepower to burn. He weaves action, romance and science with a rousing plot reflecting the classic SF of Clarke and Herbert and the glossy cinematic influence of Lucas and Spielberg. Five years after the events in Hidden Empire, hydrogues, gas giant aliens, continue to plague the Terran Hanseatic League in retaliation for the Hansa's "accidental" destruction of a hydrogue planet. This time they're also eager to destroy their ancient enemy, the Verdani, an interconnected, semi-sentient worldforest far more dangerous to the quicksilver aliens than mere humans ("The roots of a tree can shatter mountains, given time"). EDF (Earth Defense Forces) have hidden enemies in the Klikiss robots, whose resolve to reprogram "compies" (short for "Competent Computerized Companions") into human-killing robots is just as alarming as covert alien experiments on humans. Anderson's well-drawn cast includes spy Davin Lotze, an exosociologist who discovers a new method of space travel; earthy space-trader Rlinda Kett; King Peter, a reluctant "puppet" who challenges power-mad Basil Wenceslas; and DD, the terrified friendly compy kidnapped by a ruthless Klikiss robot. Sparked with surprises, enriched by ecological issues that laypersons can appreciate, this saga soars as it exposes the inner and external roots of war. (July 17) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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