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Out Past The Stars

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An epic space opera trilogy featuring the gunrunner empress Hail Bristol, who must navigate alien politics and deadly plots to prevent an interspecies war. The battle for the throne is over. The war for the galaxy is just beginning. Hail Bristol, infamous galactic gunrunner and former runaway princess, never expected to inherit the throne of Indrana. But after avenging An epic space opera trilogy featuring the gunrunner empress Hail Bristol, who must navigate alien politics and deadly plots to prevent an interspecies war. The battle for the throne is over. The war for the galaxy is just beginning. Hail Bristol, infamous galactic gunrunner and former runaway princess, never expected to inherit the throne of Indrana. But after avenging the murder of her family and cleansing the Empire of usurpers in a bloody civil war, the former outlaw must fulfill her duties to her people. Hail retires her gun and throws herself into the rebuilding of her Empire. Her hard-won peace is short-lived. When Indrana's closest ally asks Hail to intervene in an interstellar military crisis, she embarks on the highest stakes diplomatic mission the Empire has ever faced. Caught between two alien civilizations at each other's throats, she must uncover each side's true intentions before all of humanity becomes collateral damage in a full-blown galactic war.There Before the Chaos begins a fresh, pulse-pounding space opera series from an exciting new voice in science fiction. For more from K. B. Wagers, check out: The Indranan War trilogy Behind the Throne, After the Crown, Beyond the Empire


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An epic space opera trilogy featuring the gunrunner empress Hail Bristol, who must navigate alien politics and deadly plots to prevent an interspecies war. The battle for the throne is over. The war for the galaxy is just beginning. Hail Bristol, infamous galactic gunrunner and former runaway princess, never expected to inherit the throne of Indrana. But after avenging An epic space opera trilogy featuring the gunrunner empress Hail Bristol, who must navigate alien politics and deadly plots to prevent an interspecies war. The battle for the throne is over. The war for the galaxy is just beginning. Hail Bristol, infamous galactic gunrunner and former runaway princess, never expected to inherit the throne of Indrana. But after avenging the murder of her family and cleansing the Empire of usurpers in a bloody civil war, the former outlaw must fulfill her duties to her people. Hail retires her gun and throws herself into the rebuilding of her Empire. Her hard-won peace is short-lived. When Indrana's closest ally asks Hail to intervene in an interstellar military crisis, she embarks on the highest stakes diplomatic mission the Empire has ever faced. Caught between two alien civilizations at each other's throats, she must uncover each side's true intentions before all of humanity becomes collateral damage in a full-blown galactic war.There Before the Chaos begins a fresh, pulse-pounding space opera series from an exciting new voice in science fiction. For more from K. B. Wagers, check out: The Indranan War trilogy Behind the Throne, After the Crown, Beyond the Empire

30 review for Out Past The Stars

  1. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    As someone who was deeply disappointed with the author's choice to pair Hail up with one of her abusers, I almost didn't read this one. I guess I'm glad I decided to because the curiosity would have nagged at me otherwise, but it did nothing to repair the overall series for me. The whole thing is just painfully slow, and I say this as someone who's often a fan of dense, political reads. The story drifts for a hundred plus pages at a time with little real tension, and when things do pick up a bit, As someone who was deeply disappointed with the author's choice to pair Hail up with one of her abusers, I almost didn't read this one. I guess I'm glad I decided to because the curiosity would have nagged at me otherwise, but it did nothing to repair the overall series for me. The whole thing is just painfully slow, and I say this as someone who's often a fan of dense, political reads. The story drifts for a hundred plus pages at a time with little real tension, and when things do pick up a bit, the drama is too often centered around Mia, who's still Hail's love interest despite that whole "helping torture her for half a book" thing. And completely aside from my distaste at their partnership, the romance reads like it's driven more by the story structure than by the characters. I'm tempted to chalk that up to my dislike of the abuser-becoming-partner trope, but unfortunately much of the rest of the book has a similar feel. The plot includes space battles, high-intensity fights, emotional conversations, and stunning reveals about various alien races, but somehow it's all kind of dry. It's a real shame because Wagers' prose is still smooth and comfortable, and some of the scenes between Hail and her more established companions are as interesting as ever. But Down Among the Dead broke something that Out Past the Stars couldn't fix. The long torture/training stuff from the last book compressed the plot of this one, stacking developments fast enough on one another's heels to blunt their impact. And this sense of things being crunched too close together is pushed even further by piling a problematic relationship immediately on top of trauma. The first trilogy in this series is easily the best sci-fi/adventure I've read in a long time, but I'm not sure I'll be able to reread or recommend it after knowing what comes next. I'd try something else by this author though, either a book in another setting or maybe The Adventures of Hao and Gita (if that could happen in a way that didn't subject me to more Hail and Mia).

  2. 5 out of 5

    Peter Baran

    The last of the Farian War Trilogy manages to tie up the loose ends of the previous two novels though feel considerably distanced from the previous trilogy. Wagers first pulpy run around in this universe was interested in galactic warfare, with the slightest hint of alien seasoning (the Farians). At this point in saga Hail Bristol has saved her part of the Universe once, developed alien powers, died on every other page in the previous novel and now has the potential fate of the galaxy in her han The last of the Farian War Trilogy manages to tie up the loose ends of the previous two novels though feel considerably distanced from the previous trilogy. Wagers first pulpy run around in this universe was interested in galactic warfare, with the slightest hint of alien seasoning (the Farians). At this point in saga Hail Bristol has saved her part of the Universe once, developed alien powers, died on every other page in the previous novel and now has the potential fate of the galaxy in her hands as an alien invasion takes over the civil war she was trying to solve. So a lot to unpack, and whilst it does, I couldn't help but feel Wagers is happy to finish it off. This trilogy started with a successful attempt to broaden the political scope of this universe. The second one took a sharp turn into trauma, perhaps too hard (though not without interest), but this one has nothing thematically going on beyond finishing the thing. The peril is there and there are some decent set pieces but there feels like there's two main competing principles, complete the book without repeating the previous trilogy beats. The Empress Hail (cos yes, still space monarchy), has recovered from her previous trauma but is in no mood to play nice with anyone, though she is more likeable here than she has been. But despite this book having the biggest revelations and the most lore to unpack, it doesn't really sing. Whilst this isn't quite a by the dots contractual obligation ending, I do get the sense that Wagers has moved on from this character and this universe. It was always on the edge of YA and perhaps this is what happens when a story and a writer grows up. I mentioned I liked the complexity in the first of this trilogy, and was blindsided by the trauma in two, Well this is very much the aftermath of both, Wagers tried to broaden the world and the character and came up against the pulp limitations perhaps. There are some good ideas in the centre here around the warfare, and it works as an ending, but it feels the right time to end it. [Netgalley ARC]

  3. 4 out of 5

    Aaron Anderson

    I had no desire to reread the first two of the trilogy because I disliked book 2 quite a bit. Because of this, I forgot most details about minor characters and minor plot points. I think this lack of knowing 100 percent wtf was going on is why I gave this a 3 instead of a 4. So basically this book gets a bit lower ranking because I thought book 2 was too bad to reread. :)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    Here we are at the grand finale of Hail Bristol’s story. After many twists and turns the final book in The Farian War trilogy, Out Past the Stars, has arrived. The good news is that Hail’s swansong is exactly what I had hoped it would be. She leaves us on a high, doing what she does best, protecting the innocent and dishing out justice. For me, the end of any trilogy is always tinged with a certain amount of sadness. I’m hopelessly invested in the characters and caught up in the plot by that poin Here we are at the grand finale of Hail Bristol’s story. After many twists and turns the final book in The Farian War trilogy, Out Past the Stars, has arrived. The good news is that Hail’s swansong is exactly what I had hoped it would be. She leaves us on a high, doing what she does best, protecting the innocent and dishing out justice. For me, the end of any trilogy is always tinged with a certain amount of sadness. I’m hopelessly invested in the characters and caught up in the plot by that point. I wouldn’t have got to book three if I wasn’t. The thing I’ve enjoyed most about The Farian War, and the trilogy that proceeded it, is K B Wager’s skilled exploration of their protagonist. Hail’s evolution from cocky gunrunner to self-assured galactic leader is riveting. Turns out that spending time working with the criminal underbelly of the galaxy stands you in good stead for living as a royal personage. We’ve had the opportunity to see the good and the bad in Hail’s life, all the highs and the lows. Wager’s doesn’t pull any punches; this is warts and all storytelling and I love it. The physical and psychological toll of a life lived in the service of one’s subjects has left its mark. Watching Hail overcome trauma, conquer seemingly insurmountable obstacles and keep moving forward is a sight to behold. The steel in her veins that drives her to protect all those around has always felt palpable. The other characters not only complement the novel’s charismatic lead, they also help to flesh out her journey. Every time I’ve picked up the next book I’ve felt like I am reconnecting with old friends. The narrative would be a far sadder place without the likes of Emmory, Zin, Hao, Aiz, Mia and everyone else besides. Each and every one of these characters gets an opportunity to shine and they have evolved into far more than the sum of their parts. I’ve thought about this long and hard and I think, at its heart, this is a story about family. I’m sure I mentioned this in my review of Down Among the Dead and it is still true here. The idea that the people you choose to let into your life are the ones who become the most important to you. The bonds you have with them are far more significant than something as arbitrary as biology. These people become your life and they become your home. I waffle about reading a lot, you’ve probably noticed. Over the last decade, I’ve made a point of sharing my thoughts about the hundreds of books that I’ve read and enjoyed. K B Wager’s Hail Bristol novels have deservedly earned a spot towards the top end of that vast list. I love genre fiction but, if I’m honest, I’ve always struggled a bit with science fiction. It’s mostly the science part. I’m worried that I’ll drown in technobabble. These novels got me passed that. Wager’s flawless character-driven writing is so damned accessible and insightful it has reinvigorated my love of space operas. For entirely selfish reasons, mostly that I didn’t want to let the characters go, I was hoping for a long meandering conclusion to the novel. Sadly, it was all over way too soon. The Farian War has been a great trilogy and Out Past the Stars is a perfect conclusion. I think I need to go and have a bit of a lie-down. What can I say? It’s been emotional. I’ll be honest I don’t know what I’m going to do for my next sci-fi fix now that I don’t have the next Hail Bristol novel to look forward to ☹

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nicki Adle

    I AM SO SAD THIS SERIES IS OVER. I have been following this book series since behind the throne came out and I really enjoyed the premise, the writing, the characters and their developments. Personally, this is one of my favourite book series ever so I am a bit biased in this review. Let me be clear, I don't know if the series is officially over. I know it was said it was a trilogy but that is what they said about the Indranan war series so I still got a tiny bit of hope left. Now while I loved I AM SO SAD THIS SERIES IS OVER. I have been following this book series since behind the throne came out and I really enjoyed the premise, the writing, the characters and their developments. Personally, this is one of my favourite book series ever so I am a bit biased in this review. Let me be clear, I don't know if the series is officially over. I know it was said it was a trilogy but that is what they said about the Indranan war series so I still got a tiny bit of hope left. Now while I loved this book there were a few issues that need to be addressed. First and foremost while the ending was good, it was most definitely rushed and did not have the rich writing of the beginning and middle of the story. I am left with a few questions I cannot really share because they might spoil the book for anyone bothering to read this review. That is not to say the ending is bad, it isn't! In fact, most of the storylines seemed finished albeit a bit rushed in parts and thin in others. Another issue that comes up is repetition, I understand that Hail has insecurities regarding her role and she is faced with an immense amout of pressure but the never ending pep talks got a little old after a while. After six books you would kind of expect her to get the message, no matter how stubborn she is. Normally this would be a minor issue for me but in contrast to parts of the story that felt a little thin, it became a little bit more noticeable. What was awesome about this story was that you were kept guessing and it had many legitamate surprises. The characters have grown so much and their dynamics are a great read. I wish we could have had a bit more time with some of the characters that were pushed to the side for the sake of the story but that is just the way of things I guess. So finally, I gave this book five stars because issues or not I had a crazy fun time reading it and did not put it down till it was over. I will definitely be reading it again and recommending it to anybody who will listen. Now if you will excuse me, I need to go mourn the fact my adventures with the gunrunner empress are over. Thanks for the ride Hail!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Anne Szlachcic

    This is the final book in the Farian War trilogy and to fully understand the worldbuilding and characters I feel that the previous books should be read first . This book brings together all the unresolved points from the previous books ......... Galatic warfare , Aliens and Civil wars . Hail is now Empress , developed alien powers and despite having 'died' repeatedly in the previous book has saved her part of the Galaxy ............ !!! Despite this book having the most revelations I was left feeli This is the final book in the Farian War trilogy and to fully understand the worldbuilding and characters I feel that the previous books should be read first . This book brings together all the unresolved points from the previous books ......... Galatic warfare , Aliens and Civil wars . Hail is now Empress , developed alien powers and despite having 'died' repeatedly in the previous book has saved her part of the Galaxy ............ !!! Despite this book having the most revelations I was left feeling a little flat ........... I feel the Author was glad to put this series to rest . I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kevin

    I love the character of Hail Bristol and I love the breakneck pace of K.B. Wagers' writing. But I hate the way this series just screams so fast that there's never any time to slow down and catch up to what's happening. This the third installment of the second trilogy, so I guess I should get over it by now, but there's absolutely no easing you into it. Doesn't matter if it's been years since you read the last installment, you're catching up on your own. I hate that. At least help us remember who I love the character of Hail Bristol and I love the breakneck pace of K.B. Wagers' writing. But I hate the way this series just screams so fast that there's never any time to slow down and catch up to what's happening. This the third installment of the second trilogy, so I guess I should get over it by now, but there's absolutely no easing you into it. Doesn't matter if it's been years since you read the last installment, you're catching up on your own. I hate that. At least help us remember who is who and what's going on. Oh well.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tim Ludy

    Solid conclusion to the Farian War trilogy. The Indranan War trilogy is still a much better series in my opinion. I think the main issue with this trilogy was in the second book, which took the story down a really dark route that took a while to recover from. The third book did a good job introducing the trilogy's final villain, creating some new challenges, and resolving everything. Things wrapped up a little too neatly and quickly for me but that isn't a major issue. I don't know if there will Solid conclusion to the Farian War trilogy. The Indranan War trilogy is still a much better series in my opinion. I think the main issue with this trilogy was in the second book, which took the story down a really dark route that took a while to recover from. The third book did a good job introducing the trilogy's final villain, creating some new challenges, and resolving everything. Things wrapped up a little too neatly and quickly for me but that isn't a major issue. I don't know if there will be more of this series but I'd be interested to see more of these characters.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Franca

    A cracking read! I just finished this book at past midnight! This was an awesome book about Empress Hail and her band of loyal guards, one gunrunner adopted brother known as Hao , a lovely Johar , the paranoid Farians and the mysterious angry Shen who end up being more than they appear. I gotta admit the twists and turns had my head spinning! I’m so glad I got to read all six books. It has been an Awesome journey. It kept my mind off stress.Thanks so much for your great work!

  10. 5 out of 5

    D

    To quote another reviewer, the previous book broke something that couldn’t be repaired by this one. The main character became almost unrecognizable. And the Shen... I just couldn’t get on that train. I skim read this book to get a bit of closure. More bitter than sweet.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Virginia

    This was my least favorite of her books. Way too much conversation and politics, much of it opaque. I have really enjoyed her novels in the past.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Elsa

    A rousing, action-packed conclusion to the Farian War series.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin G

    I was provided a free copy by the publisher in exchange for my fair and honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Larisa

    Wagers absolutely nails the landing on this trilogy/series. Enough to make you want to start the series all over. Highly recommend this book and series.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kristen Blount

    The perfect ending to two trilogies with all these characters who became each other's family, and live in that weird space of book friends. I am sure I will visit them often. The perfect ending to two trilogies with all these characters who became each other's family, and live in that weird space of book friends. I am sure I will visit them often.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jon Adams

    Nailed it. I so hope this becomes a TV series.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Michael Hirsch

    I was ready for this series to finish. Don't read if you haven't read the earlier ones. I had trouble remembering who was what because there was no recap of the previous stories. I was ready for this series to finish. Don't read if you haven't read the earlier ones. I had trouble remembering who was what because there was no recap of the previous stories.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Julie Verive

    3.5 - a bit drawn out in the middle and then rapidly resolved at the end, but it was nice to revisit these characters again.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Neeuqdrazil

    I want more Hail! I don't want this to be the end (although she does deserve a bit of a break from saving the universe.) I want more Hail! I don't want this to be the end (although she does deserve a bit of a break from saving the universe.)

  20. 5 out of 5

    Florence

    I loved all 6 books of this series. I moved this one to the top of my pile as soon as the preordered book arrived, but then I found myself slowing down to savor the final book because I didn’t want to say goodbye. Finally the fantastic pacing and beloved characters won out and I had to finish this book. I wanted just a little more time with the author so I read the Acknowledgments and yelped with delight when I saw my own name listed because of my Patreon support! I’m still sad to say goodbye, but I loved all 6 books of this series. I moved this one to the top of my pile as soon as the preordered book arrived, but then I found myself slowing down to savor the final book because I didn’t want to say goodbye. Finally the fantastic pacing and beloved characters won out and I had to finish this book. I wanted just a little more time with the author so I read the Acknowledgments and yelped with delight when I saw my own name listed because of my Patreon support! I’m still sad to say goodbye, but I have a full heart.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Gary Prather

  22. 5 out of 5

    Thatgrrl13

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Van Deventer

  24. 5 out of 5

    Steph White

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alicia

  26. 4 out of 5

    Angela Anstey

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jason

  28. 4 out of 5

    Émile

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lope Nieves

  30. 5 out of 5

    Markku Hänninen

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