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Sten Paperback – June 1, 2000

39 customer reviews
Book 1 of 8 in the Sten Chronicles Series

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The first book in an action–packed new SF adventure series. Vulcan is a factory planet, centuries old, Company run, ugly as sin, and unfeeling as death. Vulcan breeds just two types of native — complacent or tough. Sten is tough. When his family is killed in a mysterious accident, Sten rebels, harassing the Company from the metal world’s endless mazelike warrens. He could end up just another burnt–out Delinquent. But people like Sten never give up.

From the Inside Flap

A Tale Of Revenge

Vulcan was a factory planet, centuries old, Company run, ugly as sin, and unfeeling as death.

Vulcan bred just two types of native -- complacent or tough...and Sten was tough.

When his family died in a mysterious "accident," Sten rebelled, harassing the Company from the metal world's endless mazelike warrens.

Sten would have ended up just another burnt-out Delinquent if he hadn't rescued a mysterious stranger who turned out to be his ticket off Vulcan -- and an express ride back!

The STEN Adventures:
The Wolf Worlds
The Court Of A Thousand Suns
Fleet Of The Damned
Revenge Of The Damned
The Return Of The Emperor
Vortex --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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Product Details

  • Series: Sten (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 310 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group (June 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841490075
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841490076
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 4.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,861,997 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

ALLAN COLE is a best-selling author, screenwriter and former prize-winning newsman. The son of a CIA operative, Cole was raised in Europe and the Far East. For details see Allan's website at Here's what critics have said about Cole's work: The Sten Series: Landmark science fiction -Publishers Weekly; When The Gods Slept: Page turner of the year - Locus; The Far Kingdoms Series: Glorious... Swashbuckling - Locus; A Reckoning For Kings: Classic war novel - SF Chronicle; Lucky In Cyprus - A haunting, enlightening experience -; A Cop's Life: Must read by anyone with a badge - Philadelphia Fraternal Order Of Police. And be sure to stop by his weekly blog, My Hollywood MisAdventures ( about his crazy years as a screenwriter with his late partner, Chris Bunch.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By C. Pellitteri on August 2, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is the first of the "Sten" series. It's a great sci-fi read with pleanty of classic sci-fi premisies with a few twists.
One of the nice things about this series is that it ends. Once you get excited about reading these books and become attached to the characters, you can simply pick up the next book and continue on. There is no waiting through years of writers block or movies deals (a la Robert Asprin and JK Rowling).
Yes, it's sad that a series you enjoy ends, but at least you have the sense of completion and closure to the story. Since no series can go on forever it's nice to finish strong.
This, as the first installment, is a great read on it's own merits. It's a great story with great characters.
If you're a fan of books like Starship Troopers (book NOT movie) and Ender's Game - I think you'll like this book and it's sequels.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 22, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Sten series offers sci-fi diehards the opportunity to explore a universe where the greater good isn't all that's cracked up to be. Follow our hero Sten as he slices, kicks and punches his way through some of the toughest and dangerous assignments for the Eternal Emperor. An unlikely man thrust into unlikely dangers, only to survive and come back for more. With his heavy-worlder sidekick Alex at his side, trouble is never too far away! Follow plot twists more crooked than a Campbell! If high adventure in space is your game then Sten is your man.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By J. Perkins VINE VOICE on August 5, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I picked this up at a used book store recently because I have enjoyed other series by these authors (Anteros series, Last Legion series, Star Risk, and Seer King trilogy). None of their books, including this one, have ever bored me. They keep the action fast-paced, and their plots and characters are always engaging.

This is an exciting SF tale of revenge set in the far future. A very brief summary: Sten lives on Vulcan, a constructed factory world that basically enslaves its workers, never allowing them to get ahead on their contracts and thus never allowing them to leave. Sten's family is killed in an apparent accident, but it turns out that the ruler of Vulcan callously sacrificed them to cover-up his plot against the Eternal Emperor. Sten rebels and lives among outcasts who haunt the long-unoccupied sections of Vulcan. Sten then aids one of the Emperor's undercover operatives, who offers him the chance to get off-world and escape the misery of Vulcan. Sten then joins the Emperor's special forces and later returns to Vulcan to exact his revenge on the ruler of Vulcan.

This is a promising beginning to a multi-volume series. You get a glimpse of an interesting world and entertaining characters, including Sten's team members. One of the most interesting characters is the Emperor, who is hundreds of years old. He is eccentric and is constantly trying to recreate food and liquors from Earth long ago. I would recommend this book if you are looking for a readable and exciting action tale in a scifi setting.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Serious Shopper on November 12, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
There are hidden layers to this book, just as the character Sten has hidden dimensions to him that you would never guess by just looking at him. It was the surprising complexity of the novel that prevented me from writing a review earlier, because of the sheer amount of work that a thorough analysis would require. However, I think I've waited long enough to record my recommendation of this book, even if I don't have a dissertation-level of review prepared.

First of all, I have to compliment the authors for their formidable story-telling skills. They know how to keep up a reader's interest, with cliff-hangers and plot twists that reflect their skills as TV show writers, where maintaining viewer interest is crucial to the success of the product. The book is a page-turner, and the reader will enjoy it just for that.

But, underneath, there is something you might not expect: parallels to great literature that provide glimpses into the human condition, with insights you would not think would come from a shoot-'em-up, military, outer space story.

Some reviewers complained about cliche situations in the book. What those reviewers overlooked is the artistry of the authors in turning stock situations into subtle, meaningful commentary. It's what the authors did with mundane situations that made the book, not the fact that some of the situations were recognizable. That was part of the beauty in the construction (whether the authors consciously intended this or not): there is a world underneath the world of appearances. What better way to illustrate that than to take recognizable characters and plots and mold them into a story about the reality behind the facade?

For instance, take the character Sten himself.
Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Napster on October 2, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Dynamic Duo of Allan Cole and Chris Bunch has pulles together one of the greatest scifi series i've ever seen. The Sten series. Sten a man living a life of hell on the laboring planet of Vulcan found a way to get off that godforsaken rock and with a lil luck made it into the imperial army. With Stens luck he could make it through anything but being promoted to the Mantis section of the imperial army will he be able to pull of the impossable mission of recapturing Vulcan for the Eternal Emperor? Or will his luck finnal run out?(Come Check out my Site for more info on scifi and fantasy books [...]
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