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The Soldier

The Soldier

Rise of the Jain, Book One
By


Hardcover - $26.99
Buy at: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Powell's

ISBN: 9781597809436
Forthcoming: 05/15/2018


Humanity, artificial intelligences, and monstrous aliens clash over control of deadly technology in this explosive beginning to Neal Asher’s newest Polity series.

In a far corner of space, on the very borders between humanity’s Polity worlds and the kingdom of the vicious crab-like prador, is an immediate threat to all sentient life: an accretion disc, a solar system designed by the long-dead Jain race and swarming with living technology powerful enough to destroy entire civilizations.

Neither the Polity nor the prador want the other in full control of the disc, so they’ve placed an impartial third party in charge of the weapons platform guarding the technology from escaping into the galaxy: Orlandine, a part-human, part-AI haiman. She’s assisted by Dragon, a mysterious, spaceship-sized alien entity who has long been suspicious of Jain technology and who suspects the disc is a trap lying-in-wait.

Meanwhile, the android Angel is planning an attack on the Polity, and is searching for a terrible weapon to carry out his plans—a Jain super-soldier. But what exactly the super-soldier is, and what it could be used for if it fell into the wrong hands, will bring Angel’s and Orlandine’s missions to a head in a way that could forever change the balance of power in the Polity universe.

In The Soldier, British science fiction writer Neal Asher kicks off another Polity-based trilogy in signature fashion, concocting a mind-melting plot filled with far-future technology, lethal weaponry, and bizarre alien creations.

Praise for Neal Asher
“Incredible beings wielding vast alien technologies, devastating space battles, and mind-blowing science . . . Asher completes his Transformation series with this powerful work that transcends the borders of morality, existence, and spacetime itself.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A wide-screen special-effects extravaganza, a space opera featuring gods and monsters . . . Doc Smith and Olaf Stapledon in a blender, turned up to eleven, with the contents splattering across the ceiling.” —Russell Letson, Locus

“Asher ventures into some terrifying minds and incredible space battles in this tangled but heart-pounding sequel, which achieves a rare success in depicting truly nonhuman forms of intelligence.”
Publishers Weekly

"Beautifully paced ... does just as well as at slam-bang action scenes as at painting frightening pictures ... This is space opera at a high peak of craftsmanship."
Publishers Weekly, starred review

“What Asher delivers here is state-of-the-art SF on so many levels … a compelling, smart read.”
—Paul Di Filippo, Locus

"Blends large portions of horror and mystery into an SF tale of revenge and redemption ... a complex and satisfying work."
Library Journal, starred review

"An exciting, intricate, and unabashedly futuristic story rife with twists and turns ... Asher returns to his popular far-future series, Polity Universe, with another fast-paced space opera filled with his trademark technological marvels and elaborate world building."
Booklist

"Hardboiled, fast-paced space opera epic ... Asher’s books are similar to the world of Iain M. Banks’ Culture universe, but the Polity is arguably a much darker and more vicious environment—and all the better for it."
The Register

"Perpetually on the knife's edge, and this constant tension works wonders for creating a page-turning atmosphere. It's a damningly gripping and infecting book."
Upcoming4.me

"A superb novel and Asher has an amazing talent for world-building, for writing larger-than-life characters, for weaving gripping plots and for imagining exotic alien races and wonderful technologies. Huge ships! Big weapons! Space battles! Ground battles! Treason! Revenge! This is New Space Opera at its best."
Sense of Wonder

"One of his best works so far ... Asher is a modern master of sci-fi."
Starburst magazine

"“[The Polity books] are SF novels that mix early cyberpunk’s insouciance with the widescreen baroque spectacle of space opera and the pacing of an airport action-thriller. But even by Neal Asher’s standards, there’s something particularly grisly about Dark Intelligence.”
SFX

“Asher rocks with XXX adrenaline while delivering a vivid future.”
—David Brin, New York Times-bestselling author of Kiln People

“What has six arms, a large beak, looks like a pyramid, has more eyes than you’d expect, and talks nonsense? If you don’t know the answer to that, then 1) you should and 2) you haven’t been reading Neal Asher (see point 1).”
—Jon Courtenay Grimwood

“Projects the terror-haunted sensibility of our time into a future of limitless brutality . . . Asher displays great virtuosity.”
The New York Times

“Asher has lit up the sky of science fiction like a new sun.”
—Tanith Lee