St. Legier (Jessica Keller #7)

Because I’m way behind on getting my newsletter out (should have arrived Nov 1, still impending), some of you may not be aware that the 7th Jessica Keller is coming out very shortly. (Like, depending on where you live, in the next twelve hours.)

Go pre-order it if you haven’t or just buy it if you don’t read this until Monday.


By the time you get to the end of it, you’ll notice I had to do something a little silly. And you’ll probably come to understand why, about ten chapters in. The novel itself isn’t mind-bogglingly huge, but I had to cover a stupid amount of ground in this one. My apologies up front for those of you who haven’t read it and don’t see this coming. (spoilers not explained here. You can throw tomatoes at me Tuesday.)

However, at the end of St. Legier, I had to split the story thread. Literally. Yan Bedrov had to go off an have a brief adventure. For those of you keeping score at home, I have been planning Two Bottles of Wine With a War God since I was writing the last third of Queen of the Pirates.

The last third of the Jessica Keller series (Books 7, 8, & 9) was always going to be about the evil that might come about when you create a whole new lifeform that can compete with humanity. In this case, rather than “Advanced Humans” as a result of genetic engineering, what would happen when Sentient computer systems were good enough to become people.

Suvi has been around since I first started writing the Alexandria Station Universe books. Her future (and Jessica’s past, plus Doyle, Piper, and Henri) was the place where the AI fleets had taken it upon themselves to be gods, and nearly wiped everything out as a result.

Buran was a factory controller who got promoted to be a god later. His vision was a galaxy where humanity was controlled for their own good. In War God, we get to meet EASC Carthage. The Last Dragon. Nemesis of CW Kinnison.

It is a story that makes me cry to reread. I’m old enough that I have spent time contemplating my own mortality and the mistakes I made when I was much younger, none of which I can undo now. So you go have two bottles of wine with a creature powerful enough to wipe out humanity.


The second thread coming off St. Legier is the CS-405 trilogy (Queen Anne’s Revenge, Packmule, Persephone), starring the least-armed warship in Jessica’s fleet, broken down and trapped deep behind enemy lines.

I wanted to write this one because Phil Kosnett is a character I based on someone else, and made him almost the exact opposite in every way I could, except that they are both exceptional commanders.

But without Jessica, the story could be in a different style and format. What happens when you have to turn pirate to survive? And it let me explore a whole new cast of lunatics: Lady Blackbeard. Stunt Dude. Ground Control. Plus Granville Veitengruber, Andre Gave, and Lan and Kiel.

While War God takes place at the end of St. Legier and in the gap, the CS-405 trilogy runs roughly contemporaneous with Book #8 (Winterhome, due out May 2019). The end of the third book, Persephone, takes place about midway through Winterhome, and then threads the stories back together again. If I didn’t do it this way, I would have had to end up writing at least a tenth full novel for Jessica, as Kosnett’s tale runs about 130,000 words. 150,000 with Bedrov tossed in for good measure. And it would have had to be much messier.

Winterhome is done and at the copyeditor as we speak. I’m about 30,000 words into the Ninth Jessica Keller book (title: TBD) and aiming for it to come out in the Fall.

And then I’ll be done with Jessica. There are other Alexandria Station stories to write. My schedule keeps getting bumped out, but I have a second season of The Science Officer in my notes, just waiting to be written. There will be more Doyle, and probably more Piper. The Story Road was always intended to be book one of a trilogy, and I have the notes for that, when I have the time.

Right now, I have the 4th of a 5 book series done, and the 3rd of a 6 book series done, both coming out in the summer of 2019 sometime. That will entertain you, I hope.

But today, St. Legier is coming out. It will probably be the most emotional of the nine, based pure on the subject matter. I think most of you will enjoy it, and where this last trilogy is going to take everyone, before I finally wrap up Jessica Keller’s story.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think.

One thought on “St. Legier (Jessica Keller #7)

  1. Caroline Wolfram

    Yeah! So happy to open my kindle and find the next Jessica installment all ready to go! And me just having finished the latest Scalzi this afternoon! Didn’t even have to waste a moment deciding What to read next! What a treat!!

Comments are closed.