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The Red Scholar's Wake

Shortlisted for the 2023 Arthur C. Clarke Award
  • Author
    • Aliette de Bodard
Regular price £9.99
Regular price Sale price £9.99

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  • Published: Aug 17 2023
  • Pages: 336
  • 196 x 130mm
  • ISBN: 9781399601368
'A great sapphic sci-fi'

Xích Si
: bot maker, data analyst, mother, scavenger. But those days are over now-her ship has just been captured by the Red Banner pirate fleet, famous for their double-dealing and cruelty. Xích Si expects to be tortured to death-only for the pirates' enigmatic leader, Rice Fish, to arrive with a different and shocking proposition: an arranged marriage between Xích Si and herself.

Rice Fish: sentient ship, leader of the infamous Red Banner pirate fleet, wife of the Red Scholar. Or at least, she was the latter before her wife died under suspicious circumstances. Now isolated and alone, Rice Fish wants Xích Si's help to find out who struck against them and why. Marrying Xích Si means Rice Fish can offer Xích Si protection, in exchange for Xích Si's technical fluency: a business arrangement with nothing more to it.

But as the investigation goes on, Rice Fish and Xích Si find themselves falling for each other. As the interstellar war against piracy intensifies and the five fleets start fighting each other, they will have to make a stand-and to decide what kind of future they have together...

An exciting space opera and a beautiful romance from an exceptional SF author, shortlisted for the 2023 Arthur C. Clarke Award.

'Confident, sexy, and touching'

'An exhilarating dive into space piracy'

'A fizzingly inventive space opera'

'The most glittery and delicious candy-shell'

'A "read-in-one-sitting" novel'

'An epic tale of piracy and romance'

'It took my breath away!'

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Press Reviews

  • Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun

    Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun
    A "read-in-one-sitting" novel with a beautifully-realized setting amid a complex examination of power and consequences, all intertwined with an intense and gripping romance.
  • The Financial Times
    De Bodard's novel, with its rich overlay of Vietnamese culture, is a sumptuous, romantic experience
  • Laura J Mixon, author of Up Against It and the Avatars Dance trilogy
    A gripping science fiction adventure, full of cool science-fictional ideas, plot twists, and high stakes . . . Most importantly, this story has heart, with characters you really care about
  • Kate Elliott, author of UNCONQUERABLE SUN
    Intense, gripping, and beautifully-realized
  • Gareth L Powell, award-winning author of Stars and Bones
    An epic tale of piracy and romance in the void of space. A new book from Aliette de Bodard is always a treasure
  • Stephanie Burgis, author of SNOWSPELLED and SCALES AND SENSIBILITY
    Thrillingly exciting and achingly romantic, The Red Scholar's Wake is rich with political intrigue and piratical adventure. It took my breath away!
  • Max Gladstone, Hugo and Nebula award-winning author
    Confident, sexy, and touching - The Red Scholar's Wake gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "star-crossed lovers"!
  • Susan, Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
    A Xuya-verse f/f romance about lesbian space pirates and it's SO GOOD One of the protagonists is a sentient space ship, and the descriptions of her are absolutely swoon-worthy
  • Alastair Reynolds, SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author
    The Red Scholar's Wake is a fizzingly inventive space opera, quite unlike anything I've encountered before, and told with style, grace, and a big dose of heart. SF is lucky to have Aliette de Bodard
  • Everina Maxwell, author of WINTER’S ORBIT
    The Red Scholar's Wake takes you on an exhilarating dive into space piracy with passion, politics, dazzling settings, and-even better-a profound core of love transcending hopelessness that rings throughout the story
  • Katee Robert, NYT bestselling author of NEON GODS
    Space pirates, a marriage of convenience, and a world that feels really fresh-you don't want to miss this one!
  • Tasha Suri, author of THE JASMINE THRONE
    So romantic I may simply perish