The best science fiction books by author R. Peter UBTRENT

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The Dark Pilgrim Series
For as long as they could remember, Ailanthus and Tethys have been friends,  bound together with a bond that neither understands nor questions.  Their lives are drastically changed when they are thrown into the worst Penal Colony in the Imperium and stagnate therein for twenty long, grueling years.  Befriending a motley assortment of fellow convicts, including a member of the infamous warlike Druzsni, an all-female species bend on enslaving human males whenever possible, their chance to escape brings with it a flurry of unexpected and far too conincidental events that foreshadow the greater role they are destined to play.  Meanwhile, the Imperium is tearing itself apart as the Lord Marshall Bhagavan Rohini desperately attempts to keep the greedy and power-hungry Nobles of the Greater Houses from destorying all that the Prime House Volans had built up over the last thousand years.   The Dei Glorium, supreme leader of The Church of the Blessed Prophets, is also trying to reestablish her control of the Imperium and is ready to sacrifice the millennia old Church to do it.  Both are unaware that a far greater and more deadly power is about to descend on the galaxy and crush all in its path for wrongs perpetrated during the Human Wars of Conquest over three thousands years ago.

     The existence of the Earth is a myth
     It has passed from history to legend;  from legend to shadow;  from shadow to that place beyond, which resides in the subconscious and is only taken out in those cold, dark nights when the spirits come out and drive humans back to the safety of the fire. 
     It has been over eight thousand years since the concept of such a place, a singular place from which, supposedly, humans first evolved, was even contemplated.  I know of it only because of my position within the inner court of the Prime House Volans, holder of the Imperium Seat for the last one thousand years.  I vaguely remember hearing of Earth in brief snatches of furtive conversations overheard in the Hall of Learning when the Knowledge Masters thought no one was about.  In those eight thousand years since that Earth was to have existed, Humanity spread throughout the known galaxy like a plague, displacing those other species who dared to challenege Humanity's alleged supremacy.  And the Houses arose from the chaos that was the Great War of Religious Independence, Houses of supposed Nobility based on lineages as much a myth as the concept of a singular planet being the origins of man.  And with the Houses arose the Imperium and The Church of the Blessed Prophets, destined forever to vie with one another for the allegience of Humanity.
     But I get ahead of myself.
     As I look back, I would have to say that most of my problems stemmed from an assassination.  And it was not just any assassination.  It happened to be the assassination of he whom it was thought could never be touched;  the emperor himself.
     You see, my name is Bhasin Deneb Volans, scion of the Prime House Volans, at one time the direct heir-apperant to the Imperium.   And this is,  for what it's worth, my story.
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Dark Pilgrim Rising

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Dark Pilgrim Rising

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