New Foreigner Book!


a few hardcovers and pbs available from Closed Circle, signed. Latest: Moonlover and the Fountain of Blood, Jane Fancher short story. Chernevog, part 2 of the Rusalka trilogy co-written by CJ and Jane; and Orion's Children, a tetralogy from Lynn.

spoiler potential: caution: book questions.

Do not get into this page if you are trying to read a book. This is for after you’ve read it. Likewise follow the custom of putting a subject and then dropping down a number of lines to make it possible for a reader to duck out if they don’t want the information yet.

I will answer questions about pronunciation, etc, all the little questions I’m normally asked. I won’t discuss things that disturb my creative process, like where I’m going or such. You can theorize among yourselves.

425 comments to spoiler potential: caution: book questions.

  • philospher77

    And as long as we are going through series, how about the Fortress books? And a question that has come up in rasfw about the internal consistency of the books: The Sihhe are described in one of the books as living alone with no known relatives, society, or any other connections, yet later in the series there is mention of one of them throwing his own father (and I think some other relatives) into a fire. Was this an oversight on your part, were these “spiritual” relatives (much like Uwen and Trinsten), or is there some secret to their history that wasn’t made clear in the story yet?

  • wayspooled

    Chanur Chanur, rah rah rah!


  • wayspooled

    rereading Pride for like the 5th or 6th time now hehe..

  • Walt

    Maybe before we get excited each about our own favorite universes, we should ask, do you have books planned already?

  • CapnKirk

    One of the things I really liked about Chanur’s Legacy was the deeper insight into the stsho. So as long as we’re begging you to consider plot lines, I’ll put in my plug: a story about the knnn, tc’a and chi. Maybe somebody (Jik?) makes a breakthrough in communication with the hydrogen breathers and we get inside their politics and culture. And combine it with the fun of the first *male* hani starship captain?

  • ready4more

    I was always partial to the Finisterre books. A book to wrap up the loose ends such as what happens to the rogue, would make me very happy, but then anything you write makes me very happy, so it’s a win, win situation. SHINY!

  • CJ

    I have requested the rights back (the publisher has a choice whether to print or resign the rights) on 6 more of my books. The first ones I am tackling are those to which I already had a reversion, the Ballantine fantasy books. The second will be those stranded at publishers that are not issuing books—that, or we will see them back in print; and frankly, and I never thought I would say this, I hope they just revert them.

    I’d like to do the third Finisterre book: I really want to tell that story, and Burn just amuses the daylights out of me. Burn on the bridge is thoroughly autobiographical, and I thought I might die if we went over the edge, stupid horse! and I figured if I kicked him forward, he’d die like the old warlord’s horse, right over the parapet—er, bridge; I’d like to do another Chanur, another Morgaine, some more Sword and Sorcery, some more Heroes in Hell…the list goes on and on. Lord, I’d be in high clover, if the economics let me do these things.

    Likeliest nearterm projects, getting Bren out of the real deep mess he’s in, and then writing a follower to Regenesis.

  • I hope you get your wishes (particularly with the Chanur books!)

  • Jcrow9

    Trying to say this without sounding too sycophantish (is that a word?): it is a constant source of amazement to me how I can get so invested in one of your characters, CJ, then find myself haring off after another one when you catch up an older character or introduce a new one. Some resonate more than others, of course, but every time I reeeaaalllllyyyy wish you’d update us on Dekker’s adventures, I find myself captivated by the latest new release. That’s why I’ve been enjoying the Foreigner books so much–they are far and away the longest near-continuous sequence (comparatively) sharing a common character of yours.
    Now, about Paul, Meg, and the guys…

  • CJ

    Well, there are a few hints…the serial number of the ship under construction, for one…as to where these guys go.

  • Jcrow9

    Minor Downbelow Station spooiler alert!
    re: Status of Dekker et al
    Oh yeah, no doubt. And Almarshad gets a brief mention in Downbelow Station. Elsewhere same book, Norway is mentioned as never having lost a rider.

  • Parsifal

    Around 1990 I built 3d star-mapping software and compiled my own nearby star catalogue precisely for the purpose of tracking down locations in A/U/Compact Space using the map from ‘Forty Thousand in Gehenna’ and all the internal evidence I could find. I succeeded in identifying Cyteen, but couldn’t really pin down anything else using that method. Later refinements included trying to come up with self-consistent estimates for jump ranges (I think I settled on about 3.5 lightyears for a maximum routine merchant jump and 6-7 lightyears or more for a powerful/lightly loaded ship), and using those to estimate locations for non-stellar jumppoints. Needless to say, I’m delighted to find that you were working from a 3d model, after all.
    It certainly wasn’t wasted effort, because I got a job writing games software on the strength of version 1.0. I’ve also learned a lot of astronomy in the process. May I ask what source you used for data on nearby stars – and express my appreciation for the effort you made to ground that universe on real astronomy? So many authors seem to have chosen totally inappropriate real stars as locations simply because they liked the names…

    • CJ

      The best map, oddly enough, is in a gaming booklet for Downbelow Station, Mayfair Games, now an antique.
      Ep Eri, as I recall, having a cat instead of my model on my lap, is Viking, mostly a mining stop, and Cyteen is a Lalande number. Pell, of course, is Tau Ceti. And you’re right about the jump ranges. 😉

      I don’t use ‘familiar’ named stars as a rule, as you well know, because the ones we have named tend to be bright and rather inconvenient for life or safe habitation. Antares and Betelgeuse are right out—besides being somewhat distant.

      Hani space is over toward the Orion stars…
      And there’s a lovely little semicircle of G5s and 3s—well, if you look down on SOl system, put Tau Ceti at about 3 O’clock and look toward…I think it’s Pollux…you’ll run into that little set, which I have as ‘the MacLaren stars’ after the discoverer (fiction)…and I think that’s where I set Gehenna. Union didn’t want Pell moving in there. Haven is at that approximate distance but over more about 11 o’clock. And hani space is at 9am. And alpha cent is about 5:30, with a string of very small stars, Ross numbers, headed toward UV Ceti, where, of course, the game changed and translight took over. That was the old Circle route, which is memorialized by the small circle collar pin which Fleet officers wear. It’s so-named not because it IS a circle…it’s more meandering than that, but it was supposed to include Earth, though this grew less frequent as Tau Ceti developed.

      • philospher77

        I have to admit that I put my fingers in my ears and go “la la la” loudly when I start thinking about the economics of the Alliance/Union universe. It seems that what humans have out in space are a lot of space stations with asteroid mining going on. And I am trying to figure out what could be shipped from one station to another 11 years away in the STL days that couldn’t just be made by that other station.

        Also, given that the big Family ships appear to have crews in the thousands, where do they get their food? It doesn’t sound like they have any hydroponics/gardens on board, and it doesn’t sound like the stations grow enough to keep them fed on top of their people, or that the Merchants have enough to trade to afford buying food for that many people.

        • CJ

          What humans have out in outlying stations or stationlets in Trojan position with the main station is processors all over the place. Also see comments on nanotech below. The metals and ice and other minerals they get from asteroid mining is only part of what they get. Biologicals is a major import in some places, but the huge fish-farms in orbit, the production of algaes, biostuffs and, in Pell’s case, trees—supplies a lot of things including food: food is one of the major trade items between ships and the stations, all of which have the fish farms (remember Musa’s comment about the meat loaf: it’s got fins…in Rimrunners)…and the algae/yeast tanks. We’ve not taken you too deeply into the manufacturing/agricultural underpinnings of the stations, but it’s there. Some of the big necessities in trade are calcium, sodium, chlorine, and magnesium: not everything that comes out of those ships is wood, coffee, and antiques from Earth, but they get mentioned because they’re more extraordinary.

  • Ok, Tripoint is between Viking and Pell, or between Ep Eri and Tau Ceti. (It is not a star as we know it, so it may or may not actually exist other than a hypothetical construct.)

    The Corinthian took off from Tripoint for a location into the unknown. This sounds to me like it is further away from Sol. I looked at the following star chart: And drew a line in my mind from where sol is located to where I believe Tripoint should be. Two stars came close to that line: L 372-58 & L 725-32. One of them could be the location of Corinthian’s destination.

    • CJ

      Remember that brown dwarfs aren’t charted on most star maps…and that’s what I picked for jump points, seeing no reason why there shouldn’t be accretionary intermediate bodies between fusionable stars, Ross objects, and Jupiters. Later on, people have claimed to find them, which made me rather pleased.

  • Jcrow9

    “Haven is at that approximate distance but over more about 11 o’clock.”
    Haven, also called Elag…? Is the Mri (and Regul) intersection with Humans then physically so close? I thought the Mri wars were comparatively far displaced, a ‘long, long time ahead and far, far away,’ as it were. Or is that a different Haven? While the Compact/Human instersection is contemporary or nearly so.
    What a marvelous conversation! Lay on, Spence!

  • northwestsmith

    Another good 3-D map for the 25 light year radius around Sol is in the old SPI wargame STARFORCE (also known as STARFORCE: Alpha Centauri). Over the last 30 years, I’ve used it in RPGs and interstellar merchant games like Metagaming’s Trailblazer.

  • Spiderdavon

    Wow – there’s some good stuff going on here!
    Back to the revisiting of old books – I’ve always wondered what will happen to the Compact once Py finally passes on, seeing as how she’s both the glue that holds it together and the lubricant that keeps it running.

  • Here is a census of the stars within 20 lyr of sol:

    A Census of stars within 20 lys
    2 Type A Stars
    1 Type F Star
    6 Type G Stars
    16 Type K Stars
    78 Type M Stars
    1 Type M Brown Dwarf
    1 Type L Brown Dwarf
    6 Type T Brown Dwarfs
    6 White Dwarf Stars

    (7 known brown dwarfs)

    I just reread the last few pages of Tripoint. Capella and Tom are discussing where they are going. She says 6 jumps and points at a leaf saying “More of those,” and “Forests.”

    If I extend the line I drew in my mind from Sol through Tripoint I come close to the star 82 Eridani, a G2 star, almost 20 lyr from sol. Now that star could hold an interesting planet, a lot like Earth, Cyteen, and Pell.

  • CJ

    Oh, you all are busy today!

  • cba5150

    Hi CJ:

    I have been a big fan since 1997. I happened upon “Hunter of Worlds” on a bookshelf used as a prop on a movie set in Utah and haven’t looked back.

    I have read the fortress series several times and was wondering if you are going to write a book about the Fortress of Mysts (the Sihhe Fortress in the Hafsandyr)? Does the “Old Mews” lead there as well as the other places?


    Chesley “Ches” Barnes
    Idaho Falls, Idaho

  • NosenDove

    I read and read just about everything Ms. Cherryh writes. Even some of the books I don’t especially care for simply because they are so well written.

    I don’t like economics of the book business which limits Ms. Cherryh to writing what others think will sell. I worry because she has certainly written enough books to have a good pile set aside – or so I see it.

    My own choice for a book is when Pyanfar steps onto Downbelow Station, but as Ms. Cherryh has to do the work she can call the tune.

    I do like the Wave Without A Shore.


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