Merchanter Luck C&J Cherryh Bibliography

C J Cherryh

(Carolyn Janice Cherry)
(1942 - )

SFWA Grand Master C.J. Cherryh has written more than seventy books, including the highly popular Foreigner science fiction series. She won the Hugo Award for her novels Downbelow Station and Cyteen, and her short story "Cassandra." She has also won the Campbell Award, Locus Award, and more.

Law of Survival (2001)
(Jani Kilian, book 3)
Kristine Smith
"First-rate alien characters and a fascinating culture. Innovative storytelling on that chancy interface between what is human and what is not."

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Earth's colonial enterprise, founded on a stringof planetless stars, fell apart when orders to solve problems lagged a long time behind the reality of the situation. Distance made it impossible to maintain the close control Earth wanted to exercise, and Earth's ill-advised orders provoked rebellion among the colonies when the discovery of Faster-Than-Light travel suddenly brought Earth into close contact and frequent contact with the colonies.

Cyteen had outright defied Earth's visa requirements and founded a runaway colony, its population deliberately augmented by cloned-man establishEarth'sments.

Pell Station attempted to stand by its allegiance to Earth. So did other colonies, fearing the strangeness developing at Cyteen.

I use Alliance/Union to describe novels that are centered around the Company Wars---including the Merchanter books: this would be: Downbelow Station, Cyteen, Regenesis, Merchanter's Luck, Finity's End, Tripoint, and others yet to come.

The novels in this universe, except Hellburner and Heavy Time, and Cyteen and Regenesis, can be read completely out of order...just like real history.

The actual sequence of the Alliance / Union stories is:

The Company Wars
Heavy Time
Hellburner (these first two have fairly close connections)
Downbelow Station: Hugo Winner, Best Novel
Merchanter's Luck
Finity's End

The Merchanter Novels:
Trading ships and commerce after the Company Wars
Merchanter's Luck
Finity's End

Unionside novels:
Cyteen won the Hugo for Best Novel. There was a paperbound publication that split the novel into three parts, but this has ended: the current and, by my wishes, all future publications, will have Cyteen as one unified book.
40,000 in Gehenna or Forty Thousand in Gehenna

Far Down The Time Line, but still within the story...

The Faded Sun novels:
A lone human soldier confronts the last of an alien species.

Serpent's Reach, set in the far future of the Alliance, a splinter group

Then...Very, Very Far Down the Time Line

Brothers of Earth
A far, far future world at the crossroads of its history---and a human soldier who foresees the failing of his own species. It should be noted: the Hanan Rebellion does not involve the whole human species, nor more than a region of space; but from Kurt Morgan's point of view the disaster is universal.

Hunter of Worlds:
another splinter group and a predatory species.



Hani are catlike, spacefaring, attitudinal, and protective of their violent and aggressive menfolk; and yes, I've made a little commentary on gender politics; but I've also tried to tell an honest, light, and rowdy story about very different aliens and a strayed human. Pyanfar never wanted him for a passenger...but having him....well, life just couldn't be the same.
And if you think mahendo'sat politics gets thick...Pyanfar agrees.

Pyanfar's motto is, when confronted with vastly intelligent, aggressive politics: Do something totally irrational and let the enemy think himself to death.

The Pride of Chanur {nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Novel.}
Chanur's Venture
The Kif Strike Back (never, ever joke about titles: your publisher may use one)
Chanur's Homecoming(Ulysses has nothing on Pyanfar)

And the next generation:
Chanur's Legacy.




starts with Foreigner and goes through the career of Bren Cameron, translator between atevi and humans. Each arc is  3 books, and you are safe reading the first of any arc first, but you may enjoy tracking down Foreigner and starting at the beginning. I didn't want to put the first few chapters into Foreigner: be patient with them---everybody in those chapters has been long gone by the time their descendant, Bren Cameron, comes on the scene with a midnight intruder, a shadow on the curtains, and a gunshot.

The front end of Foreigner is a novella and a short piece, the first setting up how Phoenix, a station set-up mission, skewed far and dangerously off course. The second chapter tells the story of their descendants some distance along. And then the real story in the novel begins,.

Say that there were problems in the relationship between humans and the civilization they met.

I didn't plan to have the first two sections on the first Foreigner novel, but my editor said put them in. So I did. The initial situation with the lost colonists in chapter one, is pretty grim...but as you get to know the atevi centuries later, in the main part of the story, they do have a very active sense of humor.







Rider {Finisterre}

The world of Finisterre is a bad real estate deal: a lot like the ground-level assumption behind Pern and Darkover, it doesn't really matter that everyone arrived from space. Clearly this isn't Earth, that's the important thing, and while townsfolk fear the native wildlife, the riders who keep the towns alive are very happy being friendly with the nighthorses, who are, well, the reason riders exist and the reason humans survive on Finisterre at all.

Nighthorses are addicted to human minds, in the long and the short of it, and find their importation of bacon the single most important event in the history of the world. While the books have moments that you may not want to read alone after dark, have faith: the horses will get you through.

Rider at the Gate
Cloud's Rider

The Gene Wars

Far into the future, far, far distant, humanity and an alien race have gotten into a war---in which the weapon is nanotechnology...tiny bots that can literally change matter.

Earth wants nothing to do with the survivors, and has imposed strict contact barriers between herself and her colonists.


The story of Marak, who  belongs to a world under seige, and is given a short window in which to get himself and others to safety.

The Forge  of  Heaven

Transit to the station---where the strange culture of the station itself surrounds a young watcher, whose job, an age later, is to track what has happened to Marak and his world, which is being terraformed to prove the contamination can be reversed.

The nanobots can do more than destroy. Marak is proof of it.


Nhi Vanye i Chya, seeking redemption for his sins...finds himself indebted to a liege reputed for betrayal, sworn with an oath that can damn his soul...

Gate of Ivrel
Well of Shiuan
Fires of Azeroth
Exiles' Gate
The graphic novel, Gate of Ivrel.
We own all the copies of this former Donning title, which Jane Fancher did, and we or Selina can sell those to you.



This includes all myth-based stories.

  • Arafel
    Left behind in the retreat of the elves from human lands, Arafel maintains a watch over Men.

The Dreamstone
The Tree of Swords and Jewels.

Damned by Faery for the patricide he committed to save his brother, Caith macSliabhin treads the shadowy side of Faery with one of the Dark Sidhe, a pooka (damned by Faery for goodness) as his only companion.
Faery in Shadow

A rusalka is a Russian ghost: a drowned maiden who dies for love will become a rusalka, haunting the river where she perished. Some call it scary. Some call it a vampire story. I call it the story of a scapegrace , a wizard who gets whatever he wants, and a yard-thing who's far more bark than bite. Trust Babi, when all else runs amok.

...trolls, goblins, and a chip off the Goblin Queen's mirror. A young man sets out to answer one question and discovers questions multiplying around him.

Goblin Mirror



...multiple ages of the world, and a wizard from the last age, called Mauryl Kingmaker, isolate from the young kingdoms of Men, works a summoning, a last bit of magic. But was he a good magician,  or what cause did he serve?
This set is a project I've worked for years on, and I'm very excited about it.

Fortress in the Eye of Time

Fortress of Eagles

Fortress of Owls

Fortress of Dragons

Fortress of Ice


  Over the years my publishers and editors, Donald Wollheim, Jim Baen, Betsy Wollheim, to name a few, have supported me in books that let imagination run free. It's a list of the varied and the different...

The Paladin
...set in a mythical far east, a potential student seeks a retired hero for a teacher.

Angel with a Sword
...there is no magic, but a city on stilts, with swords and piratical close. Followed by all the Merovingen books.

Merovingen Nights
(shared world, preceded by Angel with a Sword)

Visible Light
(anthology) a collection of widely diverse stories with personal commentary.

(dying earth stories)

...a colonial story, on a river with a native secret.

Wave without a Shore

A philosophical science fiction novel with a fantasy twist. Some people name their college professors and wonder if I know them.

Voyager in Night

An aeons-old alien and the [perhaps] dead crew of a passing spacecraft...

Hunter of Worlds
...a species notorious for predation. Recommended reading in some anthropology classes. I'm grateful to Don Wollheim who bypassed considerations of commercial appeal in favor of preserving the science fictional use and development of language. Besides all has an action story.

Port Eternity
An Arthurian novel, of sorts, set in distant space, among azi.

Cuckoo's Egg

An alien brings up a human child...for alien reasons.

The Colllected Short Fiction of C.J. Cherryh

Pretty well what it says.

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