Bright of the Sky
Book One of the
Kay Kenyon, noted for her science fiction world-building, has in this new series created her most vivid and compelling society, the Universe Entire. In a land-locked galaxy that tunnels through our own, the Entire is a bizarre and seductive mix of long-lived quasi-human and alien beings gathered under a sky of fire, called the bright. A land of wonders, the Entire is sustained by monumental storm walls and an exotic, never-ending river. Over all, the elegant and cruel Tarig rule supreme.
Into this rich milieu is thrust Titus Quinn, former star pilot, bereft of his beloved wife and daughter who are assumed dead by everyone on earth except Quinn. Believing them trapped in a parallel universe—one where he himself may have been imprisoned—he returns to the Entire without resources, language, or his memories of that former life. He is assisted by Anzi, a woman of the Chalin people, a Chinese culture copied from our own universe and transformed by the kingdom of the bright. Learning of his daughter’s dreadful slavery, Quinn swears to free her. To do so, he must cross the unimaginable distances of the Entire in disguise, for the Tarig are lying in wait for him. As Quinn’s memories return, he discovers why. Quinn’s goal is to penetrate the exotic culture of the Entire—to the heart of Tarig power, the fabulous city of the Ascendancy, to steal the key to his family’s redemption.
But will his daughter and wife welcome rescue? Ten years of brutality have forced compromises on everyone. What Quinn will learn to his dismay is what his own choices were, long ago, in the Universe Entire. He will also discover why a fearful multiverse destiny is converging on him and what he must sacrifice to oppose the coming storm.
This is high-concept SF written on the scale of Philip Jose Farmer’s Riverworld, Roger Zelazny’s Amber Chronicles, and Dan Dimmons’s Hyperion.
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Selected by Publishers Weekly as One of the Best Books of 2007!
"[A] splendid fantasy quest as compelling as anything by Stephen R. Donaldson, Philip José Farmer or, yes, J.R.R. Tolkien. ...you can actually feel the grasses and smell the smoke from the trains and experience great wonder in the cities of this impossible yet beautiful universe."
"[Bright of the Sky] knocked my socks off with its brilliant evocation of a quest through a parallel universe that has a strange river running through it. Unique in conception, like Larry Niven's Ringworld, this is the beginning to what should be an amazing SF-Fantasy series."
"[A] star-maker, a magnificent book that should establish its author's reputation as among the very best in the field today. Deservedly so, because it's that good...a classic piece of world-making....here is another of those grand worlds whose mere idea invites us in to share in the wonder. Bright of the Sky enchants on the scale of your first encounter with the world inside of Rama, or the immense history behind the deserts of Dune, or the unbridled audacity of Riverworld. It's an enormous stage demanding a grand story and, so far, Kenyon is telling it with style and substance. The characters are as solid as the world they live in, and Kenyon's prose sweeps you up and never lets go. On its own, [it] could very well be the book of the year. If the rest of the series measures up, it will be one for the ages."
"The author of The Seeds of Time imagines a dystopic version of our own world. Reminiscent of the groundbreaking novels of Philip K. Dick, Philip Jose Farmer,
"In a fascinating and gratifying feat of worldbuilding, Kenyon unfolds the wonders and the dangers of the Entire and an almost-Chinese culture that should remain engaging throughout what promises to be a grand epic, indeed."
"With a rich and vivid setting, peopled with believable and sympathetic
"A brilliant SF setting that rivals Larry Niven's Ringworld and Philip Jose Farmer's Riverworld series for sheer invention, adventure, complexity, and a sense of wonder." —Omnivoracious
"Well-written, with engaging, well-developed characters, Kenyon gives readers fascinating, alternative worlds on a breathtaking scale. Mind boggling worlds, deep plotting and characters—what more can we want from science fiction?" —SirReadaLot.org
"Kay Kenyon's Bright of the Sky is her richest and most ambitious novel yet — fascinating, and best of all, there promises to be more to come."
"Kenyon writes beautifully, her characters are multilayered and complex, and her extrasolar worlds are real and nuanced while at the same time truly alien."
"Kay Kenyon is a writer with enough talent to become a