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Explorer (Foreigner) Mass Market Paperback – November 4, 2003


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Explorer (Foreigner) + Defender: Book Five of Foreigner + Precursor: Book Four of Foreigner
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Product Details

  • Series: Foreigner (Book 6)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: DAW (November 4, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0756401313
  • ISBN-13: 978-0756401313
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.3 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #436,904 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A third intelligent species makes its appearance in this sixth superior installment in Cherryh's much praised Foreigner Universe series (Defender; Precursor; etc.). The starship Phoenix, manned by a human crew but with a significant contingent of the gigantic, nonhuman atevi aboard, has spent the last year in interstellar transit from the atevi home world to the ruins of Reunion Station, where the repressive Pilots' Guild still clings to power and a mysterious and deadly alien starship lurks on the fringes. Diplomat and translator Bren Cameron and the Phoenix's newly appointed junior captain, Jason Graham, must keep the peace between two powerful, but short-tempered women: Sabin, the ship's senior captain, and Ilisidi, the imperious atevi matriarch who has been entrusted with looking after her species' interests on the voyage. When they reach Reunion Station, the Pilots' Guild first refuses to allow the starship to refuel and then attempts to take it over by force. Sabin's ill-fated attempt to negotiate the release of the fuel leads to some suspenseful complications. As with previous volumes in this intense series, detailed character development, highly charged dialogue and an eye for subtle differences in cultural preconceptions are of central importance, although Cherryh also manages some fine action scenes. This is serious space opera at its very best by one of the leading traditional SF writers in the field today.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Bren Cameron, raised on a planet colonized by humans and home to the race known as atevi, receives an assignment to act as mediator between the human space station Reunion and a nearby mysterious and potentially hostile alien ship. Threading his way through the delicate lines of power aboard the ship taking him to Reunion, however, poses almost as much of a danger as confronting the alien and human threats that await him upon arriving at his destination. Cherryh superbly crafts complex intrigues and alien races possessed of integrity, as well as a sense of otherness, making this conclusion to the second trilogy (Precursor; Defender) set in the universe of human-atevi relations a good choice for most sf collections, particularly where the author has a following.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

I've written sf and fantasy for publication since 1975...but I've written a lot longer than that. I have a background in Mediterranean archaeology, Latin, Greek, that sort of thing; my hobbies are travel, photography, planetary geology, physics, pond-building for koi...I run a marine tank, can plumb most anything, and I figure-skate.

I believe in the future: I'm an optimist for good reason---I've studied a lot of history, in which, yes, there is climate change, and our species has been through it. We've never faced it fully armed with what we now know, and if we play our cards right, we'll use it as a technological springboard and carry on in very interesting ways.

I also believe a writer owes a reader a book that has more than general despair to spread about: I write about clever, determined people who don't put up with situations, not for long, anyway: people who find solutions inspire me.

My personal websites and blog: http://www.cherryh.com
http://www.cherryh.com/WaveWithoutAShore
http://www.closed-circle.net

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By K. Freeman on November 15, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Excellent, intelligent SF, the conclusion (sadly) to the atevi series. I will miss these people and this world.
On a rescue mission to Reunion Station, the Phoenix encounters layers of political complexity, a hostile station government and a potentially hostile alien ship.
This book contains more action than many of Cherryh's other recent works; it's almost as if someone told her that her protag wasn't protagging enough, because suddenly he's the action hero. But he always remains in character, and the scenes are fast-moving and believable. It's interesting to me how much tension and action Cherryh manages to convey *without* describing a lot of gore.
There are also some humorous bits--involving the atevi response to what they find in the Archive of human culture, but most especially the first moment of communication with a member of a new species. It's not that common for me to laugh out loud while reading, and I did here.
A few plot elements could have done with a little more elaboration. I wanted to know a bit more about why the stationers at Reunion were so disenchanted with the Guild, and I would have liked to see meetings between long-lost Phoenix and Reunion kin, since rescuing them was the original reason for the mission. Still, this is a worthy conclusion.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Arthur W. Jordin on November 27, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Explorer (2002) is the sixth book in the Foreigner sequence and the concluding volume in the second trilogy. In this novel, the various factions go to Reunion station to confront the Pilots' Guild and possibly the alien ships.

In the previous volume, the Phoenix has been refueled at Alpha Station and prepared for the voyage, the atevi and Mospheiran passengers have come aboard, and the ship's crew has set course for Reunion. But all is not yet settled; the various factions are still not fully reconciled, the events at Reunion remain unexplained, and Jase, the new Second Captain, is still uneasy about his competence. The year long voyage isn't likely to be peaceful for Bren Cameron.

As Lord of the Province of Heaven, Bren is responsible for everything in the ship, but has only as much power over events as he can persuade others to give him. One of his tasks is to establish a working relationship with Sabin, the First Captain, and to encourage her to share more information with Jase. Just to add more complexity to his life, he also has to cope with Cajeiri, the ajii-apparent, who is practicing archery in the corridors and likewise being an active child. However, Bren does have allies in Jase, the ajii-dowager Ilisidi, the Mospheiran roboticist Ginny, and his atevi staff.

When they get to Reunion, they find that the station has been attacked, but not destroyed, and the Pilots' Guild is in firm, even rigid, control. They also find an alien ship observing the station. Bren takes measures to undermine the Guild and to contact the aliens.

Although this novel concludes a phase of the atevi-human story, there are many questions left unanswered, so another trilogy should be forthcoming. Right? Ah, the sweet agony of waiting for the next installment!

-Arthur W. Jordin
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Sires on November 7, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First, I suggest don't try to read this book without having read the previous ones. While it can stand alone and Cherryh gives a good review of the back story, it is impossible, I would think, to fully appreciate the nuances of the human/atevi interface without having read the previous volumes.
Cherryh's experience as a translater has clearly aided her in creating an interesting character in Bren Cameron and a fascinating society in the world of the Atevi/humans. Marooned by his dedication to the spirit of his job and his sense of justice in an alien culture, Bren manages to form attachments and create his own role in Atevi society. That the relationships he develops with his alien hosts are easier for him to understand than his relationships with his family is a great piece of irony.
In this book the introduction of the second alien culture, the necessity of the association of Atevi and humans to withstand the stresses involved in contact with this new force, creates an engrossing storyline that expands on the previous themes introduced by Cherryh.
This is definitely the thinking being's science fiction.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By R.Parklane on June 6, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As the Foreigner series has become one of my top favorite sci-fi/fantasy saga, I just have to do my part, at least to rate the series 5 stars even if my review is not as comprehensive as others. I am not much into sci-fi but I picked up this series a month back as I was impressed with Cherryh's Fortress fantasy series. I was hooked from the first book (Foreigner) and had a most enjoyable 2 weeks finishing all 6 books in this intelligent and riveting saga embellished with amazing characters. Cherryh did a brilliant job in her characterization and relationships development among three different "beings", the enigmatic atevi, the humans in space and the humans who have settled on the alien world. Her main characters Bren, Illisidi and Jase are intelligently and vividly developed and all the side atevi characters are just as appealing. Cherryh also did a great job delineating the intimate relationship between Bren and Jago. The pace may be slow in the second and fifth book but the deep characterization and thought provoking plot more than made up for it. I hope Cherryh will continue with a third trilogy.
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