cover image The Risen

The Risen

D.W. Vogel. Outland Entertainment, $17.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-947659-19-3

Rich in science and mythology, this elegant sci-fi series launch from Vogel (Flamewalker) delights with strange aliens and a centuries-long love story. Eight suns keep the planet Ert in perpetual light for 90 years, until they all set for 10 years of Nightfell. Ert’s human colonists segregate and disparage the Berunfolk, the indigenous insectoid life they disdainfully call the Beneathers. When humans die, they are revived to join the slave class called the Risen. Stronger than the living and impervious to pain, the Risen protect the colonists from the Berunfolk during Nightfell. But in the city of Somteh, tensions are running high as the Risen revolt against their owners and the Berunfolk agitate for control of their own planet. A new scientific discovery will either calm or exacerbate the powder keg: human biologist Sorreg and her Berunfolk assistant Kratch unearth a fungus spore that compels the Risen to obey all orders given to them. Caught in the middle of the unrest is undead Dolan, who searches for his Risen wife, Rayli, unaware that she has become a freedom fighter for the Risen. Vogel probes class struggle, xenophobia, and exploitation within a dense science mystery tightly entwined with an enduring love story. Readers will be wowed by this ambitious and fulfilling adventure. (June)