Embers of Wars, the opening volume in Gareth L. Powell’s new space opera series, was selected as one of the Best of 2018 (So Far) by both the Barnes & Noble Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog and Tor.com. The New York Journal of Books called it “Deep and juicy in the details,” Morning Star labeled it “Top class space fiction,” and The Guardian proclaimed it “Compulsively readable, expansive space opera.” But we all know it’s not a real space opera until the second book arrives, so I was very glad to see Fleet of Knives pub last week. Here’s the description.
The former warship Trouble Dog and her crew of misfits is called upon by the House of Reclamation to investigate a distress call from the human starship the Lucy’s Ghost. Her crew abandon their crippled ship and seek refuge aboard an abandoned, slower-than-light generation ship launched ten thousand years before by an alien race. However, the enormous ship contains deadly secrets of its own.
Recovered war criminal, Ona Sudak, faces a firing squad for her actions in the Archipelago War. But, at the last moment, she is smuggled out of her high security prison. The Marble Armada has called for her to accompany its ships as observer and liaison, as it spreads itself across the human Generality, enforcing the peace at all costs. The alien ships will not tolerate resistance, and all dissenters are met with overwhelming and implacable force. Then her vessel intercepts messages from the House of Reclamation and decides the Trouble Dog has a capacity for violence which cannot be allowed to endure.
As the Trouble Dog and her crew fight to save the crew of the Lucy’s Ghost, the ship finds herself caught between chaotic alien monsters on one side, and on the other, destruction at the hands of the Marble Armada.
We previously covered Embers of War here, and our 2013 discussion of Powell’s call to Escape Science Fiction’s Pulp Roots is here. Fleet of Knives was published by Titan Books on February 19, 2019. It is 405 pages, priced at $14.95 in trade paperback and $8.99 in digital formats. The cover was designed by Julia Lloyd. Read a brief except from Embers of War here, and Fleet of Knives here, and see all our recent New Treasures here.