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Read eBook Foreigner By C.J. Cherryh –

The First Book In CJ Cherryh S Eponymous Series, Foreigner Begins An Epic Tale Of The Survivors Of A Lost Spacecraft Who Crash Land On A Planet Inhabited By A Hostile, Sentient Alien RaceFrom Its Beginnings As A Human Alien Story Of First Contact, The Foreigner Series Has Become A True Science Fiction Odyssey, Following A Civilization From The Age Of Steam Through Early Space Flight To Confrontations With Other Alien Species In Distant Sectors Of Space It Is The Masterwork Of A Truly Remarkable Author

10 thoughts on “Foreigner

  1. says:

    Review contains fanart and images done by me Sci fiLet me tell you something about sci fi books they are scary No, I m not talking about movies or TV series, and yes, Astronomy was one of my favorite subject in school But for some reason, sci fi books are generally on a completely different level for me.I have ventured into sci fi territory before And, occasionally, I would find something comprehensible enough for my fairies and dragons obsessed brain.Buuuut, in most casesI would be completely clueless of what s going on Ahem.Anyways, one day I stumbled upon C.J.Cherryh s book Foreigner and it appeared to be everything I ever wanted from any sci fi OR fantasy book The synopsis hinted at politics, intrigues, inter racial relationship, adapting to new culture, space stuff, overall a potential for me to enjoy it as long as it wasn t too philosophical, too military orientated or too techno terms heavy THE REVIEW yep, finally I was very cautious when I started Foreigner, but as I kept going I found myself falling in love with the potential of the series Not only did it have great unique and fully developed characters, an original setting, an intriguing new race with strange customs and behavior, it was just addictive True, the first book was rather strange I ll talk about it later , but the possibilities were endless and I was curious to see where the characters will go SETTING AND RACES aka the prologue The books starts with a quick recap of how the humans, whose ship was stranded in unknown space, ended up on their new alien planet All you need to know is that the Humans were far technologically advanced than the planet s inhabitants the Atevi, who were rather perplexed to see some pale short strange looking creatures obsessing over their flora and fauna and considering moving in.The initial amity between the newcomers and the locals didn t last for long and, a few years and MANY misunderstandings later, a war ensued between the two species Humans, despite their superior weaponry, had no chance of winning against a race that specialized in warfare and assassination and outnumbered them 1 to a few millions Eventually, a peace treaty was signed by both races, allowing humans to live on the island of Mospheira on a few conditions Humans would share technological information with the Atevi not too much at a time as to not cause disturbance among the orthodox of the race And NO human would be allowed on the Atevi continent, except for one the Paidhi something like the ambassador of the human population and, most importantly, the translator For full resolution go HereThe Mospherians were than happy to agree and finally enjoy a peaceful and boring existence Meanwhile, the human paidhi s role was to guarantee all demands are met and the peace treaty maintained A task not as easy as you might think you see, the Atevi are very strange Assassination is legalized in fact, the assassin s guild is one of the most respectable institution on the planet , words such as friend love feelings are absent from their vocabulary and they are also EASILY offended by the weirdest things such as NUMBERS Numbers are sacred with the Atevi their sentences have to have felicitous fortunate numbers such as 3,7 and so on, while 2, 8,etc are Baaaaad E.g if you suggest a pair of apples or your sentence has the dreaded 8 words in it, that would imply that you wish the Atevi you were speaking to bad luck or something worse Considering how superstitious this race is, it s very likely they would kill you on the spot That s why, the Paidhi s role is essentially DIFFICULT AS HELL PLOT aka the actual story An assassination attempt is made on the life of the new young paidhi Bren Cameron Unlike his predecessors, he is far open minded and ambitious to build better relationship between the two races, which could lead to major shifts in power in Atevi society Tabini aiji, the leader of the biggest and most powerful association on the planet, decides Bren is useful enough to be protected, so he sends him away to his grandmother s fortress deep into the continent.Tabini s grandmother, Ilisidi, is VERY traditional and strong minded person She despises the human influence in the Atevi s way of life, so Bren has to be extra careful one slip and the old lady would order his assassination in an instant Why would Tabini send him from one dangerous place to another As time passes by, Bren falls in love with the old fashion way of the Atevi, but there s something troubling himHe feels like he s being tested and he has no idea why He can t decide who is the enemy and whether any of the Atevi, or the Humans for that matter, mean him any good And what was the purpose of the assassination attempt anyways My opinion I just finished book 6 at the moment, so this will be of a general rant without any spoilers , but it will, hopefully, give you an idea of what the series is all about and whether it s worth investing your time What I liked 1 The Foreigner series is easily accessible for non hardcore sci fi fans You heard me right, there are no cryptic technical terms, no existential philosophy to put you to sleep, no military mumbo jumbo and so forth At least, not to an excessive extent.2 Characters are so well developed that sometimes I forget they re fictional Bren is likable and not that interesting at first, but as the series progresses, he keeps changing and evolving His two guards, Banichi and Jago, are just as intriguing, complex and sometimes even hilarious when they try to understand human logic A new cast of character is added as you go and they re perfect in their imperfection just like real people.3 World development It s quite good in the first book, but it gets massively awesome by book 6 Can t say why, or I ll spoil the series for you.4 Atevi culture There are cases where their superstitions regarding numbers is completely impractical such as rooms that have one main entrance and two emergency fire exits, because having 3 doors is luckier number than 2 But most importantly, the Atevi are 90% unique in their ways, you can barely understand their logic at first They re huge and violent, yet appear calm and collected, they value interior design and clothing with delicate lace, they re obsessed with etiquette and politeness and would gladly share a decorative cup of poisonous for humans tea with you It s just a great original culture with its own perks that enriches C.J.Cherryh s world and I love it 5 PLOT TWIIIIIISTS GOD, there are some AMAZING, mind blowing plot twists and especially massive ones towards the last 10% of EACH book A couple of times I could see the twist coming, yet, the way it was presented STILL managed to blow me away What I dislikedDespite Foreigner being in my top 10 favorite series of all time, there are still elements that do not agree with me and it s only fair that I share them as well.1 First book is the weakest Yes, many of us have heard this before Overall, the first book serves as a semi introduction to C.J.Cherryh s world and politics and it can be slightly underwhelming, with barely anything important happening for a long period of time Especially if you re expecting space battles and so on oh, they re coming, just not in book 1 2 The pacing varies, some times it s brilliant, fast, exciting, while other times it can be slow and repetitive Spending a good amount of time in Bren s head and listening to him over analyzing and going through a situation for 10 times until he comes up with an awesome idea can be slightly boring Nevertheless, these moments don t last for long except maybe in the first booksorry 3 There s a definite lack of great young female human characters 20 40 years old Yes, the old ladies are awesome, the Atevi female characters are even awesome, but when it comes to the young female characters 4 And lastly, the majority of the humans very often behave like a very ignorant nation without any culture or appreciation for history at least up to book 6 so far Some times, they even feel alien than the Atevi says a person who spent a whole summer in the Louvre, starring at vases, mummies and paintings of semi naked people Also, the humans in the book can be VERY self centered and politically illiterate Their general stupidity annoys me, which makes it kind of hard to root for them ___ ConclusionWill I recommend this book to friends If you re looking for a light, jolly book with juicy romance and predictable plot look elsewhere, I m afraid Foreigner is a sci fi series that s just unique in its own way s not action packed at first, although the battles get and epic as you go s not filled with existential questions that will make you contemplate life, but it does explore human nature and our ability to adapt and accept diversity and challenges as they s not an easy series to get into, but it s damn right worth trying 3

  2. says:

    well respected and prolific science fiction author cum scifi anthropologist C.J Cherryh puts her considerable gifts to work in this introductory volume to her elephantine mega series, as she begins a sensitive new tradition fiction that is specifically geared to those unfortunate individuals who have no experience in reading, as well as to our fellows experiencing severe mental challenges i for one appreciate the effort and am happy to report that the writing in this novel makes every attempt to be as repetitious, plodding, and as glacially paced as possible, in order to allow the novice and or challenged reader to fully grasp the ideas on display to that end, each and every thought and concept and character bit is repeated extensively, often repeatedly within the same page, and upwards of a dozen times over the course of, say, two or three pages surely this bold strategy will only serve to support those first time readers in their endeavors, and can only help those challenged by low memory capacity and extremely short term attention spans the reader can literally forget or skip entire passages, and lo and behold, exactly the same commentary will reappear, again and again bravo, Cherryh this is certainly a step in a brave new direction it is no wonder that this novel spawned so many sequels i have constructed a brief fantasia that illustrates this arresting technique Bren was extremely worried about the assassination attempt and was quite annoyed that his freedom of movement had been compromised A worrisome Bren couldn t believe he had to suffer an escort everywhere I really am awfully worried that I can t phone home , said Bren, as he huffily realized that his ability to buy canned meat alone was no longer possible This really bothers me, I can t even leave my apartment without an escort notes Bren, as he paces his apartment in frustration It was driving him crazy with annoyance and worry that not only had an assassin tried to kill him, now he couldn t travel alone any He could not leave his apartment alone After all, an assassin had just attempted to murder him An actual assassin Trying to murder him It was all so worrisome And as if the assassination attempt wasn t enough, now he couldn t even leave his apartment unaccompanied This is really very annoying and I feel awfully compromised, so much so that I am genuinely worried, reflected Bren.okay, this novel gets an extra star for two opening chapters or books , as Cherryh sees fit to call them that are well written and genuinely riveting and that have nothing to do with the tedious narrative that follows.

  3. says:

    Third read, 8 18 16 What can I say Until it gets to Bren, I m not attached to the story much, but the fact that so much of them comes back to haunt us in subsequent novels makes me want to pay attention But other than that, once Bren is in the spotlight and we re in his head, I m there, and this becomes one of my favorite novels Why The psychology, mainly The Atevi are really fantastic aliens and the real diamond in this series is the fact that they are not hardwired the same way as us Their knee jerk reactions are not ours, and Bren, our interpreter diplomat, starts out in the middle of an assassination attempt on his life for reasons he doesn t understand and political associations and alien emotions that refuse to be cracked It doesn t help that the Atevi think of everything in a type of numerology, that word orders and groupings of people or objects are either fortunate or unfortunate, that Bren must do the equivalent of tensor calculus with ever sentence, and then he gets thrown into the really life threatening situations.The whole novel is about trying to understand his situation, and its harrowing and I m just as concerned and confused as the MC And this is still true even when I ve read a good portion of the rest of the series and this is my third read for this one Can I be even impressed than this Will Bren s decisions alter the destinies of the stranded human colony and the aliens Is he betraying his own kind Or can he rely on his gut reactions Can he ever trust the Atevi Totally amazing thriller Original review My personal favorites of Cherryh are the Foreigner books, hands down And that s even while excluding her actual Hugo winners, Downbelow Station and Cyteen It s been so long since I started the Foreigner series that I only very vaguely recall having to struggle a little bit at the beginning The second readthrough, on the other hand, was an absolute joy, picking up and retaining all those previously annoying details that then brought the tale to life Nothing is wasted The tension between remaining loyal to the human community and getting sucked into the political tensions of an interesting alien race that could seriously benefit from a greater stream of technology was like a draft of pure clean water in comparison to so many years of ham fisted Star Trek.The seriously twisted mental gymnastics of having to speak through numerology made me really believe, deep down, that these aliens were not only brighter than us, but they were also natural Shakespearean poets I also learned about herd mentality from this book than I did from any other source, and she made it truly exciting.What will Bren do Will he betray his own kind Is it right to do so Is he being set up to die The poor Paidhi was so lost I loved it.

  4. says:

    Here, human beings had to remember that the universe was far wider than their little nest of stars that, in the universe at large, silence was always than the noisiest shout of life Humans explored and intruded against it, and built their stations and lived their lives, a biological contamination of the infinite, a local and temporary condition C.J Cherryh is one of science fiction s most important women writers, her name is often mentioned alongside Ursula K le Guin, Octavia Butler, Anne McCaffrey and other female sf legends She was named Grand Master by the SFWA in 2016 for her contributions to the literature of Science Fiction and Fantasy The only snag is my previous reading of her books did not go well I gave up on Cyteen after 50 pages or so, I finished The Pride of Chanur, but it was a struggle Still, I persisted because she is apparently one of the greats and I am a connoisseur of great sci fi, I don t want to miss out on an author of real significance in the genre Foreigner is possibly my make or break book where Ms Cherryh is concerned if this works out it would be my gateway to her long running series If not we will have to go our separate ways This book immediately grabbed my attention with the prologue where a spaceship called Phoenix comes out of hyperspace to find that they have arrived at an unplanned and unknown location The crew has no idea of what caused this navigation error and, worse still, where they are, or how they can get home Lost in space, like that classic 60s sci fi tv show I was settling in to find out how they get out of this jam when, in the next chapter, the timeline jumps 100 years Some of the crew have taken the Phoenix to explore the galaxy they found themselves in, while others land on a nearby occupied planet in the hope of finding a new home and to make first contact with the native sentient race called the Atevi The depiction of first contact is quite gripping, I love first contact stories, but then the narrative does something very unexpected, in the next chapter the timeline jumps another 150 years Now the human colonists have established a colony on an island with permission from the relatively primitive Atevi aliens in exchange for our technology At this point, we are introduced to the series protagonist, Bren Cameron, who is the interpreter for humanity and lives among the Atevi in one of their cities As soon as he appears in the narrative he finds himself a target for assassination with no idea of who may be behind the attempt, and why He is the lone human among millions of aliens who do not have a word for friend , like or trust Nail biting adventure convoluted political intrigue ensues.I love strange, inscrutable sci fi aliens, like the Ariekei from China Mi ville s Embassytown and the Heptapods in Ted Chiang s Story of Your Life Initially, I found Cherryh s Atevi disappointingly human, they don t look all that strange and their culture has many human characteristics and facilities.An ateviHowever, the Foreigner series has been described as anthropological science fiction in that it explores the theme of an outsider trying to understand the culture and lifestyle of an alien species by applying his own incompatible culture and experiences Indeed, as I read on, the Atevis begin to seem and alien They have no word for many of our abstract concepts friends etc , and they have words which cannot be directly translated into English As for being inscrutable, Bren certainly finds their action and motive completely baffling, in spite of speaking their language The alienness of the Atevi is very subtle, Bren has no trouble communicating with them on a superficial, practical level, but the nuances of both the human and Atevi species are mostly nonsensical to each other.Bren Cameron by the legendary Michael WhelanOnce Foreigner focuses on Bren Cameron the story becomes entirely concerned with political intrigues among the Atevi From this point, there is nothing particularly sci fi about much of the story This is not a good development for me because I don t care much political fiction, even with sci fi trappings To Cherryh s credit the book is never downright boring, though it does plod along at times and the novel becomes very dialogue intensive and I began to lose interest somewhat Bren s expressions of self doubt, confusion, anger and fear also become rather repetitious He also comes across as rather ineffectual and weak for a protagonist By the time I finished the book I was interested in what will happen next in the inter species relations However, I also felt ambivalent about reading any of this series The problem for me is that while C.J Cherryh, is clearly very talented, she seems to be interested in exploring themes that do not interest me, alien political machinations especially Having said that, the excellent Jo Walton reassured me that the series get better and better as it goes on 18 volumes now, I think Hopefully, there will be less emphasis on politics The character of Bren Cameron is also said to be much sophisticated in future volumes and I am interested in how he develops in the long run So I am still interested in the next volume Invader Foreigner, 2 As for this volume, I can recommend it with the above reservations._________________Quotes There wasn t a clear word for like It meant a preference for salad greens or iced drinks But love was worse The whole atevi hardwiring was different, the experts said so The dynamics of atevi relationships were different in ways no paidhi interpreter had ever figured out, either, possibly because paidhiin interpreters invariably tried to find words to fit into human terms and then deceived themselves about the meanings, in self defense, when the atevi world grew too much for them.Impossible to conceal their foreignness, impossible to trust a species that couldn t translate friendship, impossible to admit what humans really wanted out of the agreement, because atevi in general didn t that foreign word trust people foolish enough to land without a by your leave and possessing secrets they hadn t yet turned over.No matter that assassination was legal and accepted you didn t, in atevi terms, proceed without filing, you didn t proceed without license, and you didn t order wholesale bloodbaths You removed the minimal individual that would solve a problem Biichi gi, the atevi called it Humans translated it finesse You couldn t go on giving atevi bits and pieces of tech without accelerating the randomness in the process, meaning that atevi minds didn t work the same as human minds, and that atevi cultural bias was going to view certain technological advances differently than humans did, and atevi inventiveness was going to put and items together into their own inventions.

  5. says:

    I wrote this 50 page short story, what do you think Said C.J Cherryh It s great, but can you stretch into a 20 volume series of 500 page books Because that s what we really need Said the Publisher Sure I can, I just will start the first volume off by turning the one paragraph stay in mountain resort into 400 pages of repetitive introspection on the part of the main character And then I will turn the 2 page chase scene into 200 pages And we can go from there Said C.J Cherryh.This book should really be retitled Much to do About Nothing.Now don t get me wrong C.J Cherryh, is very talented She can do things like make the fourth book of A Song of Fire and Ice seem incredibly fast paced She can make drying paint seem like the most interesting thing to watch in the world Now very few authors can boast of such achievements, it must take a lot of hard work and dedication to make so little take up so many pages I know if I had that talent, I would have found English classes to be very easy in school She has a great ability to get ideas across too, given how many times things are repeated in the book, even the most dense could not help but get the point I would love to read the next book in the series, but there is just so much that needs to be done first, like reading anything else I can find anywhere else In fact given a choice between counting how many kernels of popcorn come in a bag and reading the next book, I think I would start counting But when I finish doing everything else I can find to do, I will read it Good job C.J Cherryh, your writing is really something, or is it a lot of nothing

  6. says:

    I blame Michael Whelan who made attractive cover art The cover art is displaying black tall warrior class alien The cover is too tempting for me than I bought it without much thinking The cover as if promised military space opera But the first book is like planetary adventure than space opera.This novel has good opening, but after that the story is dragging with unmemorable ending I don t remember the ending, and I don t really care And there are a lot of plots questions unresolved.Then I found out that this book is the first of a pretty long series around 20 years in the making between book 1 and book 15 Maybe that s why the ending is not so satisfying, but that s my opinion.Maybe I have wrong expectation that resulted in 2 star rating I expected a single novel story, not a beginning of a long series.

  7. says:

    It s somehow proved impossible for me to get into this book There is nothing appealing about either characters or setting to draw me in, and there is something about the writing and the sentence structure paragraphs usually consist of a single sentence, even the longest ones that completely puts me off I thus simply feel like I m looking at words rather than reading But as I ve heard good things about the series, I might try again at some point in the future.

  8. says:

    Foreigner is one of the most in depth, uncompromising examinations of the way cultures interact in science fiction Rereading it after all this time and with the added benefit of having read some of the later books in the series, I discovered a whole new level of complexity that s probably almost impossible to appreciate on a first reading complexity on almost every level, from Bren s personal life and the subtle interactions of the atevi characters on the micro level to the incredible socio political depth on the macro level.Read the entire review on my site Far Beyond Reality

  9. says:

    This year 2016 C.J Cherryh was given the SFWA Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award, something I think she was long overdue for I hadn t read a Cherryh book for quite a while so I thought it was very appropriate to read one now, and while I ve read this one before a long time ago, I never continued with the series due to availability issues where I lived at the time.En route to build a new space station as key outpost for human expansion the Phoenix suffers an accident during it s faster than light travel and ending up completely lost in space The ship emerges in a binary solar system with huge radiation hazards After refueling at great cost the Phoenix eventually limps it s way to a G class star.From there a station is built orbiting the inhabited planet.Cut to generations later, and there is a push for station personnel to make a landing on the planet and contact with the aliens, mainly to get out from under the thumb of the descendents of the Phoenix crew A landing is made, and so is first contact with the alien Atevi, gold eyed, black skinned humanoids with a deeply strange culture.Cut to many generations later The space station is derelict and the Phoenix has left There is now a population of over 4 million humans living on the planet of the Atevi, but isolated to an island, and relations between the humans and the Atevi are very complicated, largely steming from a treaty between the two species after a war precipitated by extreme misunderstanding between the two cultures.In the current day there s a human position, the paidhi or interpreter, but the position is far than just a linguistic one The role of Bren Cameron, newly appointed paidhi is to interpret the differences between the species, something that seems to be an impossible task given the vast gulf between them that Cherryh writes so brilliantly Bren s part of the story starts with an assassination attempt on him That s nothing unusual in Atevi culture, where assassination is an accepted and licensed way to deal with disputes, but it is unusual for the paidhi, because his position is primarily a diplomatic one and attempted assassination is a pretty fundamental breakdown of diplomacy From there Bren is clearly being carefully managed by his Atevi companions and seems to be explicitly being isolated from communications and information, culminating in him being shipped off to a country estate medieval fortress There he finds himself being hosted by the fierce grandmother of the leader of the faction of the Atevi the humans have allied with and still very much under the threat of assassination.In my opinion, this story illustrates much of what makes Cherryh s writing so great An intense view on Bren focusing on his feelings, doubts and thought processes while being explicitly out of the loop on what s really going on He s also almost completely lacking an internal model for how his companions are making decisions regarding him and his welfare and much of the attention in the book is devoted to him trying to reason all this out The Atevi are deeply associative beings, but lack concepts like friendship and interpersonal appreciation, instead focusing heavily on loyalty and betrayal They re also incredibly thin skinned and can be deeply offended by things like the number of words you use in a sentence when addressing them.So like much of Cherryh s other work, we have incredibly in depth world building as well as really alien aliens, made all the alien by their similarities to humans Like a conceptual uncanny valley.It s also only the first book of a series of trilogies and things are far from resolved at the end of this novel, although there is a satisfying conclusion to this one.

  10. says:

    spoilers for the general storyline I really liked the first two books or sections of this novel First the arrival in the planetary system, then a fast forward of a few generations to the planetary settlers and first contact with the indigenous population of their chosen planet, the atevi I enjoyed the setting in space and the glimpse at societal differences between the humans onboard of the ship Down below I had fun reading from the POV of an atevi and his human counterpart was an interesting character as well.Unfortunately, with the beginning of the main storyline, my enjoyment took a nosedive Another jump to several hundred years later Humans and atevi have been at war and resolved it by humans living secluded on an island Bren, our main character, lives among the atevi as the sole human, a diplomat and interpreter of the sometimes incomprehensible language and cultural concepts of the atevi The atevi don t know friendship, trust, don t comprehend the idea of borders and separate nations Instead there is loyalty, betrayal, complicated relationships with other factions, sanctioned assassinations and people with delicate sensibilities.The culture of the atevi reminded me of feudal Japan and made me want to re read Shogun by James Clavell.Could have been fantastic, but isn t explored as much as I would have liked Instead we are shown this world through the limited view of Bren, who is a whiny little shite that obsesses endlessly about inconsequential things like getting his mail and being perpetually worried, but never does anything By the halfway point of the book I was annoyed, bored and skimming On top of Bren being a boring character, the writing was repetitive and progressed glacially slow I like my stories plot driven, endless navel gazing over the same points and ideas for pages after pages holds little interest for me Also much of the story happened in the off Bren spent most of his time sitting around, agonizing over one thing or another There was very little doing Except for the last 50 pages or so, when we got a little action.The other characters were even shallower than Bren Not much character development Little humour.The last 20 pages were not bad, I just wish the rest of the book had been that lively Mostly it dragged, I was bored I did not connect to any of the characters, the story was pretty bloodless Nonetheless I am actually interested to find out what happens next Maybe I will get the next book at some point Considering that there are about a million sequels after this book, I think it is safe to say that this first book is set up One can hope, that there will be plot development in the next installments