In all Kherishdar there is one man with no choices… and one woman with them all.
When alien taint destroyed her former House, Haraa nai‘Qevellen-osulkedi was raised out of casteless despair to translate human languages for the god of Civilization, the Ai-Naidari Emperor. At first her curiosity and intelligence serve her well, but the longer she spends among aliens, the more questions she has about her world. How did Kherishdar come about? Why is the Emperor singular, and the priest who serves Shame? Why does Kherishdar need an Exception, and why is it always a woman, and why does she annoy Haraa so badly?
Kherishdar’s Exception is a coming-of-age story set in a world where everyone has a place. But among the Ai-Naidar, you don’t get to choose that place.
Of all the books I write, the books of Kherishdar are among the most science fictiony in the old sense, the one I loved best when I first discovered the genre: immersion in an alien culture, complete with made-up language. As such, they’re pretty hardcore. But I love writing them, and I love the language, and their fans, though fewer than the Peltedverse’s, have the most amazing discussions when they talk about the concepts in these books.
So if that’s your jam, try the series by starting with The Aphorisms of Kherishdar, which, with its companion The Admonishments of Kherishdar, serve as primers to the setting and introduce you to the main characters who propel the events of the following two novels. Maybe you’ll bounce off it, but maybe you’ll love it…
For those of you who already do, I say: raiselovrus pinith aishenesh. I welcome you (and will always welcome you) home.