War is a serious violation of the Alliance’s colony charters, so when the Stardancer is sent to investigate rumors of a conflict on the distant colony of Gledig, they’re not expecting to be mired in a web of deceit, treachery, and tragedy… one involving not just the colony, but pirates and a missing Fleet officer. Even worse, the evidence suggests Fleet itself might have had a hand in creating the situation about to erupt on the ground.
But while the conflict might have been decades in the making, time is running out for Gledig, and only Fleet can save the colony from the culmination of the forces working against it now.
The fate of thousands hangs in the balance. Can the crew of the Stardancer redeem the honor of the Fleet… before it’s too late?
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Sword of the Alliance is the newest full-length novel set in the Peltedverse, and the first full-length novel in the Alysha Forrest series. Like the others in the series, it stands alone–in fact, I intended people to read this one first when I first wrote it! This is an action/adventure milsf book, fast-paced but with my trademark interest in relationships. I think it’s a great introduction to the series… and it’s out right now!
Sword’s release also launches my rebranding of the Alysha Forrest series! Previously, the Stardancer books suffered from confusing ordering/meta-data, lackluster or inconsistent covers, and a fatal disconnect between prequel and the subsequent books. All this has been fixed!
Look how harmonious they are together now! But I’m sure you have questions, so here are answers:
This series is in the Peltedverse, isn’t it? Absolutely. Not only that, but Alysha is my oldest character in the setting. I conceived her almost 25 years ago! These books are more or less contemporary with the early Dreamhealers books, and happen before Her Instruments and Princes’ Game. In fact, readers of the Princes’ Game series are going to see a very interesting origin story for one of the characters in that series in Sword of the Alliance….
You look like you’re bursting to add something else, here. You’re absolutely right! I love Jahir and Vasiht’h, and of course Princes’ Game is full of exciting characters, but also headlined by a guy (*waves to Lisinthir*). And while Her Instruments has Reese, she shares screen time equally with Hirianthial. The Alysha books are where I get to spend lots of time with female characters; the entire crew of the Stardancer is female! Y’all, it’s fun. I know it’s milsf, but sometimes I feel like I’m writing a slumber party, given the banter.
What order should I be reading them in? The correct reading order for the series is 1. Second, 2. Who is Willing, 3. Sword of the Alliance, and 4. Either Side of the Strand. They were incorrectly ordered because I published Book 3 (Sword) after Book 4 (Strand)! In fact, they’re still not right on Audible because I can’t fix them until I show up with the audiobook edition of Sword. (Audio readers, expect that in September!)
What happened to Alysha’s Fall? Alysha’s Fall is still available for sale! But it’s so different in tone that I ‘unhooked’ it from the series on retailers (it is now considered ‘Book 0’). The Stardancer books are supposed to feel like a cross between a Peltedverse book and Star Trek: the Original Series: PG-rated adventure romps with a milSF flavor and a focus on relationships. Alysha’s Fall, as those of you who’ve read it will attest, is an R-rated ‘dark night of the soul’ story, and most people say it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever written. Since you don’t need to read it in order to understand the rest of the series–it’s basically Alysha’s origin story–I don’t want people trying to come into the series through it. People who feel up to dark, difficult stories can find it; people who prefer Saturday afternoon popcorn reading can stick with the official line-up.
What about all the short stories that were floating around for a while? I hate selling a la carte short stories… it feels like a cheat for both reader and author. So I’ve taken down all the short fiction, and will collect it at a later date into a ‘companion volume’ for the official series. In the meantime, my Patreon patrons can still download the separate shorts, and new Alysha shorts, when I write them, will go up there until I have enough to release the collection. That should keep the cost down for you all, and dispel confusion. (Audio listeners, I can’t take down the audio shorts yet, but I will when the contract allows! If you want them, get them while you can!)
So that’s the story on the Alysha series! I hope you’ll give it a try. I’d love to continue writing Stardancer books, but all that will depend on whether the rebranding props their sales up. I have faith, though. These are classic Pelted books with all the themes I’ve become known for. They were just waiting for me to give them a good sprucing up so they could find their readers.