CJ Cherryh Booklist w/Notes

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#1
Inspired by a question Connavar had about Cherryh's works, here's a lengthy annotated list (initially taken from ISFDB but, obviously, much fiddled with - there are many lists which arrange her books in various ways but most of them seem to follow the marketing rather than actual contents) . Corrections almost certainly needed and very welcome.

It is arguable but, for the purposes of this post, I'm going to divide Cherryh's career into three phases.

1. 1976-1986

All of her work for this period was published by DAW and, except for the Ealdwood fantasy duo, was nominally part of the Union/Merchanter Alliance universe but few are particularly connected.

She began the Morgaine trilogy which is a "science fantasy" story which has a mention of a very tenuous connection to the Union/Alliance universe but has no necessary connection or reading order in relation to the other books though they are tightly connected to each other. (I regard these highly. Exile's Gate, listed below, was added in 1988.)

Morgaine Series
Gate of Ivrel (1976)
Well of Shiuan (1978)
Fires of Azeroth (1979)

Then she wrote two separate science fiction novels which are also nominally connected to the U/A but have no special order and are not connected to each other. (I think these are okay and Brothers is the lesser of the two.)

Brothers of Earth (1976)
Hunter of Worlds (1977)

Then she began the Faded Sun "trilogy" which is really a single huge novel (normal by today's standards) split into three. These are obviously tightly connected to each other but only loosely to U/A. (I regard these very highly.)

Faded Sun "Series"
The Faded Sun: Kesrith (1978)
The Faded Sun: Shon'jir (1978)
The Faded Sun: Kutath (1979)

Then she wrote two more separate novels. Hestia is barely connected to U/A and Serpent's Reach is very much a Union novel, though there are inconsistencies with some aspects of other Union novels. (Hestia is easily her single worst novel and was not reprinted during her recent omnibus reprints. Serpent's Reach is pretty good - perhaps average for Cherryh.)

Hestia (1979)
Serpent's Reach (1980)

With Downbelow Station, she won her first Best Novel Hugo and started the strict U/A sequence though even those are not as tight as Morgaine or Faded Sun. Downbelow deals with the Company wars and Merchanter's Luck is a very loose sequel with a very different focus and 40K is a Union book. (These are respectively great, very good, good and are core U/A reading. There are several followups, published 1988-1997 + 2009, listed below.)

Union/Alliance Semi-Series
Downbelow Station (1981)
Merchanter's Luck (1982)
Forty Thousand in Gehenna (1983)

Then she wrote perhaps her best singleton. This, like almost everything, is vaguely related to the U/A universe but has no real specific connection.

Wave Without a Shore (1981)

Then she began another tight series. If I recall correctly, this wasn't specifically connected to U/A at all, being "Compact Space" but it later turned out that Compact Space was another region in U/A space and some events in the U/A books are referred to (in a distant way) in the Chanur books. But they don't really have to be read in any order in relation to the other U/A books - they are in strict order relative to each other, though. (They're excellent. Chanur's Legacy, listed below, was added in 1992.)

Chanur Series
The Pride of Chanur (1982)
Chanur's Venture (1984)
The Kif Strike Back (1985)
Chanur's Homecoming (1986)

Another good singleton with vague Union mentions.

Port Eternity (1982)

A pure fantasy duo (expanded from a novella, originally - not bad for what it is).

Ealdwood Duo
The Dreamstone (1983)
The Tree of Swords and Jewels (1983)

Another pair of singletons with loose connections. Voyager includes a rather inconsistent U/A timeline. (They're both fine, though Voyager is written in a rather experimental mode.)

Voyager in Night (1984)
Cuckoo's Egg (1985)

This is the only book of this period that I haven't read. I'm not sure if it came out as a novel and then was turned into a shared world (called "Merovingen Nights") or if it was conceived as a shared world to start with. I think the latter. I think this has the usual mention that it's in the U/A universe but I'd be amazed if there's any real connection.

Angel with the Sword (1985)

Meanwhile, she released a connected collection of "dying earth" far future science fantasy tales and a collection of miscellaneous stories, including her very first Hugo winner (for Short Story), but both these collection were superseded later.

Sunfall (1981 C)
Visible Light (1986 C)

2. 1986-1993

Her second phase was published by multiple publishers and included a bunch of shared-world things, other media/marketing nonsense, and fantasy, along with some U/A books and a pointless collection.

This is a shared world with a much inferior writer (based on a solo work or two I've read). I haven't read these either. No U/A connection, as they are fantasies.

Hell Shared World Series
The Gates of Hell (1986) with Janet Morris
Kings in Hell (1987) with Janet Morris
Legions of Hell (1987)

U/A Part 2
This U/A chunk, where she switched from DAW to Warner, comes in at least four parts (and there are still three books yet to come in Part 3).

A belated Morgaine book (that is just as good as the first and makes a great finish to the series).
Exile's Gate (1988)

Cyteen is a Union book. Rimrunners is a Merchanter book. Cyteen got her her second Hugo for Novel. (It was okay but I actually enjoyed the shorter, tighter Merchanter book more.)

Cyteen (1988)
Rimrunners (1989)

A tightly connected duo of prequels set before Downbelow Station. (I like these a lot but they really need a sequel but never got one.)

Heavy Time (1991)
Hellburner (1992)

Finally, Chanur's Legacy gave the Chanur books a belated sequel like the Morgaine books. (Unlike the Morgaine books, it isn't really necessary as a final book and isn't as good, but it's still pretty good.)

Chanur's Legacy (1992)

Moving on from U/A, there's this fantasy singleton (not read).

The Paladin (1988)

Three fantasy books "with" other authors (written by them but outlined by Cherryh, or something like - not read).

A Sword of Knowledge "Collaborative" Series
A Dirge for Sabis (1989) with Leslie Fish
Wizard Spawn (1989) with Nancy Asire
Reap the Whirlwind (1989) with Mercedes Lackey

A highly regarded fantasy trilogy (also not read).

Russian Trilogy
Rusalka (1989)
Chernevog (1990)
Yvgenie (1991)

Two highly regarded fantasy singletons (also not read).

The Goblin Mirror (1992)
Faery in Shadow (1993)

A small press collection that has nothing of substance not available elsewhere.

Glass and Amber (1987 C)

3. 1994-present

After what was really a significant lull in her (at least SF) career, she rebooted by returning to DAW and producing the successful and never-ending Foreigner books (some of the other books were still published by others). The Foreigner books are apparently tightly connected to each other but were intended to be separate from U/A - they may have been joined at some point - I don't know. (I read the first couple-three but then quit when she released the fourth, or something like that. They were okay but I didn't want to get involved in another open-ended Cherryh series.)

Foreigner Series
Foreigner (1994)
Invader (1995)
Inheritor (1996)
Precursor (1999)
Defender (2001)
Explorer (2002)
Destroyer (2005)
Pretender (2006)
Deliverer (2007)
Conspirator (2009)
Deceiver (2010)
Betrayer (2011)
Intruder (2012)
Protector (2013)
Peacemaker (2014)

All she's done in U/A is tack on two more Merchanter novels for Warner, similar in kind to, e.g., Rimrunners, but singletons at heart (Tripoint was excellent; Finity's End was not) until, after a dozen-year gap, doing Regenesis for DAW. I think that's a direct sequel to Cyteen. (It's in The Pile.)

U/A Part 3
Tripoint (1994)
Finity's End (1997)
Regenesis (2009)

A fantasy quintet.

Fortress Series
Fortress in the Eye of Time (1995)
Fortress of Eagles (1998)
Fortress of Owls (1999)
Fortress of Dragons (2000)
Fortress of Ice (2006)

A science fantasy duo (I think - maybe pure fantasy), apparently unconnected to U/A (but unread).

Finisterre Duo
Rider at the Gate (1995)
Cloud's Rider (1996)

A belated TV tie-in novel.

Lois & Clark (1996)

A series that, again, was intended to be separate from U/A (so I skipped it) but was apparently belatedly connected somehow. This was apparently supposed to be more than a duo but maybe wasn't very successful.

Gene Wars Duo
Hammerfall (2001)
Forge of Heaven (2004)

The definitive, comprehensive Cherryh short fiction collection.

The Collected Short Fiction of C. J. Cherryh (2004 C)

tl; dr

She wrote numerous Union/Alliance books that are mostly single within the universal backdrop and don't form a connected larger plot, though there are subsets within that universe of Chanur, Faded Sun, and even Morgaine books. Also, there are books, still loose, which focus more specifically on the Merchanter Alliance ships or Union worlds which are similarly single-like except Cyteen/Regenesis. Then she's also written the huge Foreigner series and small Hammerfall duo. For fantasy, none of the series of Ealdwood, Russian, or Fortress are related to anything else, as far as I know, and there are a few singletons. And then there are Merovingen Nights, Hell, and Sword of Knowledge "junk" series as well as the Lois & Clark tie. For her short fiction, you can get Sunfall/Visible Light or get the Collected Stories which includes those two and previously uncollected stories equal in length to either of the earlier collections.
 

dask

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#2
Read GATE OF IVERL a long time ago, liked it and thought I'd read more her but never got around to it. Didn't realize she was so prolific.
 

Connavar

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#4
I cant say thank you enough J-Sun, this is so detailed and answers everything i wondered. Something that stopped me was how tight or loose series many of those U/A books are.

I mostly interested in Chanur series, Downbelow, Morgaine Series. Specially that Science fantasy series appeal to me alot to see if she is as good in fantasy stories. Good to see she wrote more fantasy series, solo books than i thought.
 

Parson

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#5
J-Sun -- indeed thank you. I have read a fair share of those books, but fewer than I'd imagined. I will have to look to see where I ended with the Foreigner series. But I've read all of them at least through Betrayer. Since I don't shop in book stores any more (they are an hour away by auto and my Kindle gets me books in mere seconds, and cheaper) I have not thought to look for any more. I will check it out for sure. I had actually thought that she'd retired, or was sick or something. --- I digress!! -- It is a cracker jack of a series. I think the alien psychology there is every bit as good as The Faded Sun or the Chanur series. I have never read any of her Fantasy, until the last couple of years that I've been a part of this forum I had thought that all fantasy was, was magic, werewolves, swords, and such. I know better, but still don't usually have a taste for it.
 

Connavar

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#6
J-Sun -- indeed thank you. I have read a fair share of those books, but fewer than I'd imagined. I will have to look to see where I ended with the Foreigner series. But I've read all of them at least through Betrayer. Since I don't shop in book stores any more (they are an hour away by auto and my Kindle gets me books in mere seconds, and cheaper) I have not thought to look for any more. I will check it out for sure. I had actually thought that she'd retired, or was sick or something. --- I digress!! -- It is a cracker jack of a series. I think the alien psychology there is every bit as good as The Faded Sun or the Chanur series. I have never read any of her Fantasy, until the last couple of years that I've been a part of this forum I had thought that all fantasy was, was magic, werewolves, swords, and such. I know better, but still don't usually have a taste for it.
How would you rate Foreigner books you have read? Not comparing to her best work but are they worth for a fan of her SF books? They dominate the SF bookshelf in my fav bookstore when i look for C for Cherryh. The covers look like action filled, interesting worlds. What kind of SF are they compared to Fades Sun series that i know well?
 

Parson

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#7
Connavar -- Not quite sure how to answer that. Personally I think of them as deeply complex. There is a continuing undercurrent of translation difficulty when some concepts and motivations are shared but only to a degree, while others especially as the humans try to deal with the aliens are barely comprehensible and not felt in the least (the first book or two is deeply this). The continuing struggle throughout the series (so far) has been between the main character who is caught between his human heritage and his connection to one of the main rulers of the planet. I would say that Foreigner has a larger sweep and obviously with so many books a deeper examination of life and its motivations than the Faded Sun Series. (I've read it once many years ago, so I'm a little foggy here.)
 

Connavar

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#8
Connavar -- Not quite sure how to answer that. Personally I think of them as deeply complex. There is a continuing undercurrent of translation difficulty when some concepts and motivations are shared but only to a degree, while others especially as the humans try to deal with the aliens are barely comprehensible and not felt in the least (the first book or two is deeply this). The continuing struggle throughout the series (so far) has been between the main character who is caught between his human heritage and his connection to one of the main rulers of the planet. I would say that Foreigner has a larger sweep and obviously with so many books a deeper examination of life and its motivations than the Faded Sun Series. (I've read it once many years ago, so I'm a little foggy here.)
That sounds much more interesting, more cerebral than the pulpy covers, the long series maybe open ended series made me think. Maybe read the first few books of the series to see what they are alike after i have read her more classic books.
 

Teresa Edgerton

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#11
I find I've read 32 of those books. I knew she was one of my favorite authors but was surprised to realize I had read so many ... and exactly half of that is science fiction, which is also a surprise since I am only an occasional reader of science fiction. But I read more SF during her early years, so that probably explains it.

I read the first Foreigner book and thought it was excellent. I agree with Parson that you won't be disappointed. Oddly, since I liked the first one so much, not reading the rest of the series may seem a little odd. But somehow the second book never came my way when I was looking for it, and jumping into the series again into the series somewhere in the middle seemed inadvisable, they are so complex and you really have to be paying attention to every little thing. Time does fly, doesn't it? I've been meaning to read Invader since 1995.
 

clovis-man

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#12
A science fantasy duo (I think - maybe pure fantasy), apparently unconnected to U/A (but unread).

Finisterre Duo
Rider at the Gate (1995)
Cloud's Rider (1996)
Science Fiction, I would say in that the inhabitants of the world are descendants of spaceship travelers. The main focus of both novels is the relationship between (and among) humans and horse-like creatures with telepathic powers. I enjoyed them both. I feel that Cherryh has gotten so involved with the Foreigner series, that she has no space in her writing for sequels to other of her works. The Gene Wars duo comes to mind.

And thanks, J-Sun for putting this together. I find that I've read in excess of 35.
 
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#13
Thanks for all the nice comments everyone, and thanks clovis-man for the clarification on the Finisterre books. Now that you mention it, I do recall picking up something about telepathic horses and that's probably what made me not know how to categorize it. Hopefully more people can chime in with more specifics. I see a couple of glitches now, myself. The Heavy Time/Hellburner duo should have had a (sub-)series caption. Also, it's not really important but, while she did publish for Warner from c.1988-97 I say "switched" like it was absolute and it makes Exile's Gate and Chanur's Legacy look like they're Warner books when they're DAW, too. Couple of other places where things could have been stated clearer (e.g., I said Compact Space was "in" U/A space when I meant "adjacent to"). None of that's really significant but, especially if I'm flat-out wrong, I hope people point it out.

As far as counts, I get a total of 74 books listed there which means, kind of like Teresa's "exactly half", I've read exactly half of the total with 37 but, unlike Teresa, the only fantasy was the Ealdwood duo. I have a 38th in the pile but, by the time I ever read it, she's sure to have published another couple of books to keep me at 50%. :)

(It is strange that she's written so many books and so many of us have read so many of them and yet we can't get enough threads going to get her a sub-forum.)
 
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Teresa Edgerton

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#15
I think it may be because we seldom talk about a single series, and try to cover broader topics, which results in one thread at a time instead of multiple threads going at once. If we had a few active threads and added the others, it would more than meet the requirements for a sub-forum, I think.
 

Parson

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I had a count. If my counting is correct --- possible --- and my memory doesn't fail me --- far more likely --- I've read 33 of them. I believe that anyone who really likes considering alien motivation and how that works out with humans could not possible avoid reading Cherryh. Certainly deserving of her own sub-forum, but as T.E. has said it is more a matter of how much conversation is going on, then the supposed "worthiness" of the author.
 

Bick

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#17
I had a count. If my counting is correct --- possible --- and my memory doesn't fail me --- far more likely --- I've read 33 of them. I believe that anyone who really likes considering alien motivation and how that works out with humans could not possible avoid reading Cherryh. Certainly deserving of her own sub-forum, but as T.E. has said it is more a matter of how much conversation is going on, then the supposed "worthiness" of the author.
I'm rather astonished at how many books you've all read of one author. I've not read that many books by any author (well, possibly asimov, but I doubt it even there).

To get a sub-forum - let's all make an effort to make a comment in a distinct Cherryh thread today to hit the requirements, and then request it. She's certainly deserving. I shall now go to an old Cherryh thread and post something... :whistle:
 

Ray McCarthy

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#18
Books read more than 30
Asimov
Prachett
Enid Blyton
Agatha Christie
Maybe Leslie Charteris ("The Saint") as long ago as 1970s

30 P.G. Wodehouse

28 Alexander McCall-Smith

Maybe 20+
David Eddings, Raymond E Feist, EE "Doc" Smith, Anthony Horwitz, Anne McCaffery, Terry Brooks

16 L.e. Modesitt

Loads of Brian Aldiss, A.C. Clarke, Ursula Le Guin, LeCarre, Victor Canning, Helen MacInnes, Harry Harrison, Ben Bova, C.J. Cherryth, Dorthy Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, Alister McClaine, Hammond Inis, Nevil Shute, Philip K. Dick, Fredrick Pohl,

I've read loads I don't have any more, (Libraries, borrowed, left nearly 1000 abroad) and we have about 23 book cases.

Recently read since last June about 65 school or ballet physical books and about 15+ on Kindle (research). Probably nearly as many adult books in same period.


I'm trying to broaden my reading just now. Read my 1st Zombie Post apocalypse book yesterday ("The Girl With All The Gifts") and Josephine Tay the day before. Reading Georgette Hayer tonight.

I can read half a book to two books an evening depending on size.
 

clovis-man

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#19
I'm rather astonished at how many books you've all read of one author. I've not read that many books by any author (well, possibly asimov, but I doubt it even there).

To get a sub-forum - let's all make an effort to make a comment in a distinct Cherryh thread today to hit the requirements, and then request it. She's certainly deserving. I shall now go to an old Cherryh thread and post something... :whistle:
As you say, many of us have read a large number of her works. So perhaps a discussion thread(s) on one or two of her lesser known books would be worthwhile (he said with absolutely no ulterior motive in mind). How about Rider at the Gate and Cloud's Rider as a pair to discuss or Hammerfall and Forge of Heaven, another pair? It's been a while since I read them and I haven't kept my copies. So it would take a little while for me to get up to speed, but I could probably manage it, if there is interest.
 

Teresa Edgerton

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#20
If we want to involve more people, I think it would have to be just the opposite: a book or a series that many of us have read, and would like to share our thoughts about.
 

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