The Dred Chronicles, Book 1
Welcome to Perdition.
At one time, Perdition was a deep space ore refinery.
Then the Conglomerate decided that it would
make a fine floating prison.
stripped the place and left. This is where they send the worst of the
An automated ship docks at
irregular intervals and leaves new prisoners and various supplies.
There are no cells, no guards, no maintenance,
It’s every man for
Of course, alliances tend to
There are six major ‘territories,’
each ruled by a convict.
There is no
such thing as parole or release from Perdition.
There’s nothing to do but fight and try to consolidate power.
As a woman, it’s tough to just survive in Perdition.
The Dred Queen manages her territory with the
help of her spymaster, Tam, and her enormous bodyguard Einar.
Her reputation is fairly new, and she has to
live up to her ‘legend’ every day.
of it is the chains she wraps around her arms and legs; they’re not just decorative,
they’re quite handy in a fight.
exhausting, but the only way to survive.
When a new supply ship docks, Dred is there with her people to try to
grab supplies, and to look over the new fish, hoping to add to her numbers.
Jael steps off the transport and into chaos.
There’s fighting over the supplies, of
And, since no one has anything
at all to lose, the fights are deadly.
Then he sees Dred and her people.
Jael is used to being discounted and generally
ignored as an expendable grunt.
woman takes a (professional) interest in him, he’s surprised.
But he’s got nowhere else to go, so why not
throw in with her?
Like every inmate, (including
Dred) Jael is hiding something.
The author does a masterful job of setting the scene.
Everything takes place in a space
I could see the grimy, gray
walls; see the flickering of the unmaintained lights; tried not to imagine the
smell that ship must contain.
though the ship is huge, it’s still a confined space and slightly
claustrophobic for all that.
All of this
sets the background for a story that’s part spy thriller, part personal quest,
and a whole lot of action.
sensitive to gore or violence or the language that comes with it, this is not a
book for you.
For the rest of us, this
is a great find:
A story that’s part spy
thriller, part scifi adventure, and part action movie.
The character development is amazing, too.
Bottom line: all these people are criminals
of one stripe or another.
The author manages to
craft identities and backstories for each of the characters that, at least,
give us an understanding, if not an empathy for, that person.
Even though they’re all “bad,” there are some
who are much more bad/crazy/dangerous than others.
In the world the author has created, it’s
easy to understand the sliding scale of human behavior.
Being sentenced to Perdition without hope is
one thing; reading about it is another. I’m already planning a return trip.