Kutath was an ancient world and a dying one. In ages past its best sons and daughters had gone to the stars to serve as mercenaries in the wars of aliens. Now the survivors of its star-flung people, the Mri, had come back, in the form of a single woman, the last priestess-queen Melein, and a single man, the last warrior, Nium. And one other, the human Sten Duncan, who had deserted Earth's military to swear servisce to the foes of his own species.
This is the 3rd book and climax of the novels of the Faded Sun, candidates for Hugo and Nebula awards. Complete in itself, it is an SF novel of the hightest caliber, an in-depth study of the last stand of an alien culture confronted with the devastating vengeance of two star-conquering races.
C.J. Cherryh has done it again--allowed us a view of an alien system of thought and honor, self-consistent, but wildly not human.