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An Honorable Defense

Crisis of Empire: Book 1

David Drake
Thomas T. Thomas

The assassination of the emperor disrupts the carefully crafted balance of power in an empire that blends humans and other sentient species. Who will give up the peace first in a move toward domination? The blow falls on the paradise world of Palaccio, a green and blue planet of fair winds and playtime for humans, which most other species avoid as "Stink World." When the war breaks out, the man who must devise a defense is the least likely to succeed, Taddeuz Bertingas, a public relations functionary who never took basic military service. He finds himself the point man in an interspecies coalition to save the last remnants of empire.

Cluster Command

Crisis of Empire: Book 2

David Drake
William C. Dietz


The First Empire has entered what may very well be its last crisis: the Emperor is dead by assassination and has left an infant heir. Worse, the imperial mystique is but a fading memory: nobody believes in empire anymore. Indeed nobody believes in much of anything beyond the boundaries of self. There are exceptions, of course, and to those few falls the self-appointed duty of maintaining a military-civil order that is corrupt, despotic--and infinitely preferable to the barbarous chaos that will accompany its fall.

One such is commander Anson Merikur. This is his story.

The War Machine

Crisis of Empire: Book 3

David Drake
Roger MacBride Allen

What's worse than a corrupt, decadent, autocratic, oppressive regime? Corrupt, decadent, autocratic, oppressive aliens...

"For Reasons of State" they ripped his marriage apart and forced his wife into the bed of another man. Now their empire is in danger and he is the one man in place to stop the alien threat.

But there's a problem: when the Empire ruined this loyal servant's perfect marriage--and his life--with its political maneuverings they turned Captain Allison Spencer into a junkie.

But sometimes necessity can bring out the best in a man, no matter how far he's fallen. In a story of personal heroism and individual boldness Drake & Allen bring The Crisis of Empire to a rousing climax.

Crown of Empire

Crisis of Empire: Book 4

Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

AN EMPIRE OF FOUR THOUSAND WORLDS The Pact of Mankind is a dinosaur lumbering toward oblivion; hedged about by alien enemies, rotten with decadence and corruption, run by competing oligarchies of criminal corporations, but ruled by a single man - the High Secretary of the Pact.

If the High Secretary should die, the contest to succeed him would draw in:

  • The head of the armed services, using the Fleet as a tool of his political will
  • Powerful corporations, acting with calculated ruthlessness to loose alien enemies into the heart of the empire
  • The High Secretary's children and his faithless widow, pawns in a struggle which only one need survive
  • A secret cabal among the non-human races enslaved to do Mankind's labor, now ready to supplant their masters and
  • Rebellious troops from the empire's borders, determined to place one of their own sort in the High Secretary's chair

If the High Secretary should die, it would be feeding time in the piranha tank.

And the High Secretary is dead!