The Caphenon by Fletcher DeLancey

The Caphenon (Chronicles of Alsea – Book #1) by Fletcher DeLancey

4.67 out of 5 based on 3 customer ratings
(3 customer reviews)

$8.99 / E-BOOK

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Book One in the Chronicles of Alsea

Author: Fletcher DeLancey

On a summer night like any other, an emergency call sounds in the quarters of Andira Tal, Lancer of Alsea. The news is shocking: not only is there other intelligent life in the universe, but it’s landing on the planet right now.

Tal leads the first responding team and ends up rescuing aliens who have a frightening story to tell. They protected Alsea from a terrible fate—but the reprieve is only temporary.

Captain Ekatya Serrado of the Fleet ship Caphenon serves the Protectorate, a confederation of worlds with a common political philosophy. She has just sacrificed her ship to save Alsea, yet political maneuvering may mean she did it all for nothing.

Alsea is now a prize to be bought and sold by galactic forces far more powerful than a tiny backwater planet. But Lancer Tal is not one to accept a fate imposed by aliens, and she’ll do whatever it takes to save her world.

Publication Date

March 2015

Formats

epub, mobi, and pdf

Edition

1st

Length

165,000 words

Language

English

ISBNs

978-3-95533-254-9 (mobi), 978-3-95533-255-6 (epub), 978-3-95533-256-3 (pdf)

Publisher

Ylva Publishing

3 reviews for The Caphenon (Chronicles of Alsea – Book #1) by Fletcher DeLancey

  1. rmhawkins
    5 out of 5

    :

    Really enjoyed this long awaited “first book” in this series. Fletcher has created a wonderful and complex world for the alien ship, The Caphenon, to inhabit with advanced technology and deadly enemies. The writing is masterful with brilliant interactions between the aliens and the Alseans both on a warrior’s personal basis and as a country defending itself against invasion by a brutal force that without the equipment on the Caphenon, there is little hope of success. I highly recommend this book to you.

  2. Simon Gorton
    5 out of 5

    (verified owner):

    This is very unlike other science fiction books in that it does not focus on technology, but more on the people who are threatened with extinction. It is a really great read that I had difficulty in putting down (I like the remainder of the trilogy). If you have not read this genre before this is a good place to start. It sets the bar very high and does not fail over the three books.

  3. Lee Koven
    4 out of 5

    :

    A space firefight happens above Alsea, a technologically advanced world without very fast spaceships and no proof there are aliens until some aliens crash down to the planet. The aliens, a humanoid and friendly bunch, inform Lancer Andira Tal (government head) that the less friendly aliens they fought in space want to come invade and enslave Alsea. With their ship beached, the aliens want to help Alsea as much as they can, but they are limited by the orders of their government. Tal must do whatever’s necessary and make uncomfortable choices to try to save her world. Will it be enough?

    The Caphenon, titled for the crashed ship the friendly aliens were on, boasts tons of memorable and intriguing characters with complex interactions. Lancer Tal must bear the weight of society, marshal the world’s troops, and play politics at the same time, and those have shaped her into a fascinating woman, tough and empathetic. Her foil, Ekatya Serrado, has a similar personality and burden, but differing life circumstances and loyalties molded by her society’s customs. The most major non-main character (deuteragonist?), anthropologist Lhyn Rivers, is richly detailed: curious, loyal, brilliant, and drives the actions of many with her ingenuity and compassion.

    The female characters in The Caphenon all take actions, take responsibility for their actions, and have all kinds of different jobs, capabilities, and personalities. You know, like people! That they are people is not a gimmick or remarked upon. This is what I look for in stories: fully realized characters of all shapes, sizes, genders, sexualities, and more.

    Alsea is a fascinating world with a complicated society and history. The caste system makes meritocracy an even more problematic concept, with people of certain aptitudes (inborn) being shoehorned into the higher castes. Alsean society knows this is an issue but has not divested of it, and the tensions between the less prestigious castes and the warriors and scholars come up in several discussions.

    Delancey explores an interesting concept I wish I saw in more military fiction: the soldiers die, but they have traditions and ceremony to commemorate that, and they’re trained for war. Civilians still have to cope with war and often bear the scars of conflict as well. In The Caphenon, some academics have to get into combat zones and do violent things unfamiliar to them, the trauma of which will follow them beyond the story.

    The villainous aliens, the Voloth, are unfortunately just villainous aliens. They believe they’re better than the Alseans, and the individual ones we get glimpses of are very simple in that. They aren’t named or physically described beyond having humanoid bodies, and they just seem to be evil because that’s their role. I find it a stretch to believe that such a huge army isn’t at all conflicted about what they’re doing in the least with their truly horrifying tactics. I prefer when I get a little more insight into the villains’ more human motivations and when they are presented in a morally gray manner.

    Both Tal and Serrado are presented with some awful choices. They are prepared to go through with horrible things for decent reasons and self-flagellate indefinitely for them, but the story doesn’t pull those triggers. They don’t end up doing or having to do anything truly problematic, and having been led through some of those struggles and then finding no questionable means were required for the ends felt a bit of a letdown for me. There are characters who have to do problematic things for survival, but the moral choices of the main characters end up with their hands pretty clean when I thought dirtiness would have been interesting.

    This is space opera. It’s big. We get explanations of matter printers, religious myths, and military funerals. Cultural exchange takes many pages, and the reader will need to have some patience for that. There are dozens of side characters, which can be difficult to keep track of. Several of them are named and die in the same scene. Almost all of the conflict is large scale. Even the personal matters mostly come up because of world conflict, not budgeting badly for the month or keeping residence poorly.

    I received a free copy for review purposes.

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