The beautiful young noblewoman Kamoj Quanta Argali rules a declining province on a distant planet that has lost the high technology of its original colonists. To save her people, Kamoj has contracted to marry Jax Ironbridge, the moody, unpredictable ruler of a prosperous land. Then a mysterious stranger from another world proposes a marriage that neither honor nor law will allow Kamoj to refuse.
The Quantum Rose is the sixth novel in the acclaimed Saga of the Skolian Empire, following the novels Primary Inversion, Catch the Lightning, The Last Hawk, The Radiant Seas, and Ascendant Sun. This intelligent, entertaining series combines space opera, hard SF, future history, military SF, and romance in a rare and potent blend. The Quantum Rose is an interplanetary adventure, but the space-opera and hard-SF elements are less prominent, as the plot focuses on a compelling and complicated love triangle, the clash of very different cultures, and an approach to war that SF has almost never considered.
A Nebula Award finalist, Catherine Asaro has won the Analog Readers' Poll, the Sapphire Award, and the Homer Award. In addition to the Saga of the Skolian Empire, she has written the near-future SF novels The Veiled Web and The Phoenix Code. --Cynthia Ward
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From Publishers Weekly
The sixth volume in the Saga of the Skolian Empire (Primary Inversion; The Radiant Seas; etc.) is a freestanding page-turner as a romance, with a hard science framework. It begins in an idyllic forest bathing pool on the backwater world of Balumil. Kamoj Quanta Argali, attractive young female governor of a poor province with decaying traces of millennia-old technology, notices the mysterious off-worlder, Havyrl Lionstar, watching her dress. Retreating in consternation, she also attempts to hide fromDand thus offendsDher lifelong fianc , Jax Ironbridge, overbearing governor of a wealthier neighboring province. Soon Havyrl (brother of previous protagonists in the series) blunders into outbidding Jax for marriage with Kamoj. Jax objects violently and reclaims Kamoj by force, puzzling the off-worlder, whose presence by then is entangling the provincial governors in the imperial politics of the wider universe. The gender-role elaboration in the maneuvers that follow will seem overdetailed to some readers, but fascinating to others. To Havyrl and his staff, Balumil is a rediscovered colony; hence they spend a lot of time explaining to Kamoj the significance of the quasimagical remnants of technology in her culture. Desperate for clues to understanding the wider universe as her planet's isolation ends, Kamoj proves to be as brainy as she is beautiful. Agent, Eleanor Wood of Spectrum. (Dec. 18)
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