Primary Inversion (Saga of the Skolian Empire) (Paperback)

Primary Inversion (Saga of the Skolian Empire) By Catherine Asaro Cover Image
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The first book in the Skolian Empire saga by the Nebula Award–winning author. “Fast, smart, speculative . . . another stellar debut.” —Los Angeles Daily News

Soz Valdoria, a bioengineered fighter pilot—and first in line for the military command of her people—has found refuge with her squad on the sanctuary planet of Delos. It offers a respite from the war that rages between her Skolian people and their enemies, the Traders. Looking for rest and relaxation, they must still be on their guard for the Trader soldiers who also visit the sanctuary.

In a bar, they confront the worst of the worst: an Aristo from the Trader ruling caste, seemingly on the prowl for a “provider” he can use for his barbaric impulses. His presence takes Soz back to her days as a prisoner of war, when she became the plaything of a sadistic and soulless Aristo.

And yet something is off about this Aristo. Unable to ignore her instincts, Soz searches the city until she finds him in a secured mansion. Breaching its fortifications and eluding its guards, she discovers a devastating truth: this man is no true Aristo. He is a genetic anomaly like Soz, one of the few people who can handle the massive neurological demands of the psibernet, the technological marvel that gives the Skolians their only advantage over the Traders. This false Aristo, this sheep in a wolf’s clothing, is heir to the Trader throne. The emperor created him for one reason—to take control of the Skolian network and conquer Soz’s people.

But Soz has never felt such a connection as she does to this Trader heir. It may prove her—and the universe’s—undoing . . .

“This is one of the best SF first novels in years.” —Booklist

About the Author

Catherine Asaro is the author of thirty books, ranging from thrillers to science fiction and fantasy. Her novel The Quantum Rose and novella The Spacetime Pool both won the Nebula Award, and she has been nominated for multiple Hugo Awards. Asaro holds a doctorate in chemical physics from Harvard; her research specializes in applying the mathematical methods of physics to problems in quantum physics and chemistry.

Asaro has appeared as a speaker at many institutions, including the Library of Congress, Georgetown’s Communication, Culture, and Technology program, the New Zealand National ConText Writer's program, the Global Competitiveness Forum in Saudi Arabia, and the US Naval Academy. She has been the guest of honor at science fiction conventions across the United States and abroad, including the National Science Fiction Conventions of both Denmark and New Zealand, and served as president for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. She can be reached at and has a Patreon page at

Praise For…

“Asaro’s SF debut features strong male and female characters and a well-realized far-future world. Blending hard science with a familiar tale of star-crossed lovers, this novel deserves a wide readership.” —Library Journal

“A good read and a promising debut for Asaro.” —Starlog

“An imaginative debut that takes off at a frantic pace, with dazzling technology, stirring battles, and mental hijinks.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Though Asaro, a physicist, provides more than enough esoteric detail on faster-than-light inversion drives, cybernetic enhancements and computer networks, she manages to anchor her story with thoughtful, engaging characters and an intriguing vision of the future—and she leaves the door open for a sequel.” —Publishers Weekly

Product Details
ISBN: 9781504079594
ISBN-10: 1504079590
Publisher: Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Publication Date: November 8th, 2022
Pages: 244
Language: English
Series: Saga of the Skolian Empire