A powerful new SF novel from the author of the hugely popular Recluce and Spellsong series.
Van C. Albert is a commander in the Republic Space Force of Taran. His bravery led to the defeat of a larger enemy ship but caused the inadvertent destruction of a civilian liner. Although his name was cleared, he now seems doomed to a life of backwater postings. He can only watch as a simmering cold war erupts into a fierce interstellar war, fuelled by the pull of religious fanaticism, economic and political rivalry.
Van is seriously wounded on assignment, and wakes from a coma to find that he has been decorated and summarily retired from military service. Desperate to escape boredom, he jumps at the chance to fly a starship for the Integrated Information Systems foundation. Seemingly harmless, the IIS's influence is far reaching and Van soon finds himself at the centre of the action, a key player in a war which will shake all human worlds.