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Defender by C. J. Cherryh
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Defender (original 2001; edition 2002)

by C. J. Cherryh (Author)

Series: Foreigner (5)

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9381516,005 (4.14)34
The fifth novel in Cherryh's Foreigner space opera series, a groundbreaking tale of first contact and its consequences... Nearly ten years after the unexpected return of the starship Phoenix, the alien atevi have three functioning space shuttles, and teams of atevi engineers labor in orbit to renovate the space station. But these monumental advances not only add a dangerously powerful third party to an already precarious diplomatic situation, but rouse pro- and anti-space factions in atevi society to incendiary levels. To help negotiate these treacherous diplomatic waters, Tabini-aiji, the powerful head of the atevi's Western Association, has sent the only human he fully trusts into space: his own paidhi, Bren Cameron. However, the threat of possible invasion by hostile aliens who attacked Phoenix's station in a far-off sector of space hangs over them all. And when one of the senior captains of the Phoenix confesses that this station was not completely destroyed, as had been previously thought, the crew mutinies. How can Bren hope to mediate on a station overcome by a rebellious crew intent on taking the Phoenix on a rescue mission back into hostile alien territory? The long-running Foreigner series can also be enjoyed by more casual genre readers in sub-trilogy installments. Defender is the fifth Foreigner book and the the second book of the second sub-trilogy.… (more)
Member:Kalal
Title:Defender
Authors:C. J. Cherryh (Author)
Info:Daw Books (2002)
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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Defender by C. J. Cherryh (2001)

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English (14)  German (1)  All languages (15)
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
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  lcslibrarian | Aug 13, 2020 |
Still loving the series! It's like a warm glass of SF milk by a fire on a stormy winter night, so comfortable and steady. I mean, seriously, what's more steady than the slow retrofitting of a space station and the refueling of an interstellar spacecraft while juggling aliens, lies, and family problems back home?

I mean, besides a cool drink of poison?

Is this the beginning of another coup attempt? Poor Bren has been left out of the loop again, but at least he thinks quickly on his toes!

And yes, time has passed, and yet that's all for the good because the Phoenix has been refueled and now we've got to deal with the Captain's lies. Time to go off to uncharted realms? Oh yes, I like where the series is headed. And of course, the Atevi will find a way to be in the center of it. :)

Bren feeling inadequate. Again. (Not that this is such a bad thing. I really like him and it's always a pleasure to see him get richly rewarded for being himself.)

I love this series. It's like a competence-porn soap-opera of diplomatic relations and translation errors in the middle of assassination attempts. What's not to love? :)
( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
To read more reviews, check out my blog keikii eats books!

Quote:
“We are not mentioning to the captain that Cajeiri is six,” Bren said. “She believes sixteen.”
“Sixteen?” Cajeiri crowed, delighted.
“Hush, rascal,” Ilisidi said.
“It’s a convenient misunderstanding,” Bren said, “saving argument. And there would be argument about his presence otherwise, in a dangerous place. Human custom is against it.”
“Do you hear?” Ilisidi said. “You must pretend ten more years, young scoundrel, to satisfy the ship-aiji’s expectations of your wisdom, your sense and your self-restraint.”
“I think the ship-aiji will suspect me,” Cajeiri said sadly, and the Ragi-speakers could not but laugh a little.”
Review:
BREN, GOING DEEPER INTO SPACE!

Defender was a book of mysteries. We learned almost nothing the entire time. Every step of the way there were more questions. Which isn't how the other books went, but it isn't not how the others went, either. We just typically have more answers than we got throughout Defender.

There is a massive time skip between this book and the last. A few years worth of time skip. It had me very confused. On the one hand, I get it, it makes sense. On the other hand, I was just confused. I couldn't keep the timeline straight. I'm not used to series with such big time skips. I'm pretty positive I don't like it because it skipped over so much character development I was craving to have.

I don't remember when we find this out, and I may be breaking my own personal rule where the first 20% of a book is fine to spoil but be wary after that. But if I didn't talk about it there would be nothing to talk about at all: the Reunion outpost that was attacked by aliens is actually alive and hopefully well, and the ship is going back to rescue them. Bren has been volunteered to go by Tabini, the ruler of the atevi. To go with Bren is Ilisidi, Tabin's grandmother, and Cajeiri, Tabini's kid. Yeah. Interesting times! This book is mostly setting up that journey and leaving.

There are some parts I don't like, like the time skip. And the fact that Bren's home life keeps interrupting important business and distracting him just when he needs to concentrate the most. But overall I'm so happy to be reading this series I could overlook a great many sins. This is just the best. ( )
  keikii | Jan 23, 2020 |
This is the fifth of the Foreigner series, and Bren Cameron has made the terrible mistake of becoming comfortable in his new role as the representative of the atevi ruler aboard the space station. He has spent the last several years carefully maintaining peaceful relations among the atevi, the humans of the island of Mospheira on the planet, and the humans of the returned starship, Phoenix. Phoenix is refueled, the first of the new starships is well along in construction. One of the atevi aboard the space station, Lord Geigi, has even worked out a method of raising fish (a food acceptable to atevi at all seasons) on board the space station in manner that's practical and yet also complies with the strict atevi taboo against raising captive food animals.

So, of course, at this point, the senior Phoenix captain, Ramirez, dies, and with his dying breath imparts a dangerous secret to the most junior captain, Bren's old friend and fellow paidhi, Jase Graham. The space station the Phoenix crew had built in another star system was not completely destroyed by the aliens who attacked it; there were survivors on board who were left behind to begin repairs while Phoenix went for help. Only a tiny number of people knew this; virtually the entire crew was lied to, being told that their family members were dead. In addition, because part of the station survived and there were survivors aboard, it's possible that the aliens, if they returned, could have obtained information about the location of the atevi homeworld and the fact that it's the nearest thing to a home base that humans in these parts have. This is overheard by a station worker who came to the infirmary with a minor injury, and the rumor gets out, and all hell breaks loose, as atevi, Mospheirans, and crew realize how critically they've been lied to. The Phoenix captains vote to go back to the other star system and rescue those remaining on the partially-destroyed station, because they'll have a mutiny on their hands if they don't.

Meanwhile, Bren's mother is ill, possibly seriously, his brother's marriage is being seriously damaged by his efforts to Make Mother Happy (an impossible task) and he wants Bren to come home, take care of Mother, and fix his marriage, and Bren's ex-fiancee is hinting that she wants to get back together. In his professional life, Bren is unable to communicate with Tabini, the atevi ruler he serves. He's receiving no communication, directly or indirectly, and gets no response to his own messages, no matter h ow urgent. Has he lost favor with Tabini? If so, this could be a serious problem, given how thoroughly he's burned his bridges with Mospheira.

And then Ilisidi, Tabini-aiji's grandmother, arrives aboard the space station, with Tabini's six-year-old heir, Cajeiri, in tow, and Bren's life gets exciting.

If you're allergic to Cherryh's prose, avoid this; it's more of the same. If not, however, this is an enjoyable new entry in an enjoyable series. ( )
  LisCarey | Sep 19, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. J. Cherryhprimary authorall editionscalculated
May, Daniel ThomasNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Youll,StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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To Asad, Barb, Harriet, and Irene,
and to Ann, Lawrence, Elaine, Elizabeth, Elinor
and Cynthia...
They found the missing pieces.
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Firelight went up to the red figures of an ancient frescoed vault, smoke-hazed from the braziers on either side of the black stone tomb.
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The fifth novel in Cherryh's Foreigner space opera series, a groundbreaking tale of first contact and its consequences... Nearly ten years after the unexpected return of the starship Phoenix, the alien atevi have three functioning space shuttles, and teams of atevi engineers labor in orbit to renovate the space station. But these monumental advances not only add a dangerously powerful third party to an already precarious diplomatic situation, but rouse pro- and anti-space factions in atevi society to incendiary levels. To help negotiate these treacherous diplomatic waters, Tabini-aiji, the powerful head of the atevi's Western Association, has sent the only human he fully trusts into space: his own paidhi, Bren Cameron. However, the threat of possible invasion by hostile aliens who attacked Phoenix's station in a far-off sector of space hangs over them all. And when one of the senior captains of the Phoenix confesses that this station was not completely destroyed, as had been previously thought, the crew mutinies. How can Bren hope to mediate on a station overcome by a rebellious crew intent on taking the Phoenix on a rescue mission back into hostile alien territory? The long-running Foreigner series can also be enjoyed by more casual genre readers in sub-trilogy installments. Defender is the fifth Foreigner book and the the second book of the second sub-trilogy.

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