This book combines the series of Faded Sun books into one.
The mri are a proud warrior race; mercenaries for the regul for thousands of years. But when the regul went to war with humans, the mri lost. Now the regul have ceded the mri homeworld to the humans. With the mri numbers dangerously depleted, and humans coming to claim the planet Kesrith, they are left facing a dire situation. Two surviving mri, Niun and Melein, are thrown into a very unlikely, and very uneasy, association with a human soldier, Duncan. Together the three of them embark on a quest to explore the origins of the nomadic mri in hopes of saving the species from the regul and humans both.
The Faded Sun is the first book I've read by C. J. Cherryh, and I wouldn't be averse to picking up another of her books. Faded Sun takes a long time to get going. The first two hundred or so pages are very dry and boring. I was tempted to put the book aside at several points. The only reason I didn't was because the book had been highly recommended to me, and I wanted to see just what was so good about it. Well, I'm glad I stuck with it, because suddenly it all came together. The slow beginning sets the stage for the explosive action to follow, and really puts events into perspective.
At first, I thought the book was a blatant Dune rip-off. There are several obvious correlations: a desert planet, a hero named Duncan, a mystical nomadic society, and giant sandworm-like creatures that eat everything. But you could say pecan pie and dumplings are also the same because they both have sugar, flour, and salt. What Cherryh does with these ingredients is turn out something completely different.
The book demonstrates the relationship between three distinct species: the humans, the mri, and the regul. Technically, it shows the relationship between four, with the dusei, as well, but the dusei are only semi-sentient, so they can't exactly tell their own side of the story. Unfortunately, the regul come across as the bad guys in the book. It would have been nice if they were portrayed a bit more sympathetically, but they really do seem to be a despicable kind of creature.
One problem I had with this three-way portrayal is the way it generally portrays each species as being rather homogeneous. The humans have their disagreements, but still seem to only have one culture. This could be because we were presented only with a rather militaristic group, but I'm not so sure this is why. The reminiscences of various humans on their past seems rather similar, despite their coming from different planets.
Ahzeam reviewed The Faded Sun Trilogy: Kesrith / Shon'jir / Kutath on
Helpful Score: 1
This is a haunting tale that grips you from the first moments and will not let go. Even after finishing this book, it remains in your mind. Of the many works of Cherryh that I have read, this is by far her best book.
The Faded Sun is a trilogy that consists of three books.
book one ------- Kesrith
book two ------- Shonjir
book three ----- Kutath
i'm picky about science fiction and generally prefer fantasy, but this easily became one of my favorite series. the mri are the most believable and interesting alien species i've read, and the individual characters are easy to like and sympathize with. i'm looking forward to reading more of cherryh's books!
This book made me loose sleep! I couldn't put it down. It's a wonderful space story that doesn't get too technical in the science area, or overly involved in romance. It's just a GOOD story. Highly recommended for all!