The Coldfire Trilogy

The Coldfire trilogy tells a story of discovery and battle against evil on a planet where a force of nature exists that is capable of reshaping the world in response to psychic stimulus. This terrifying force, much like magic, has the power to prey upon the human mind, drawing forth a person’s worst nightmare images or most treasured dreams and indiscriminately giving them life. This is the story of two men: one, a warrior priest ready to sacrifice anything and everything for the cause of humanity’s progress; the other, a sorcerer who has survived for countless centuries by a total submission to evil. They are absolute enemies who must unite to conquer an evil greater than anything their world has ever known.


Black Sun Rising

Black Sun Rising

DAW Books – 1991
ISBN: 0886775272
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Over a millennium ago, Erna, a seismically active yet beautiful world, was settled by colonists from far-distant Earth.  But the seemingly habitable planet was fraught with perils no one could have foretold, and the colonists were soon caught in a desperate battle for survival against the fae, a terrifying natural force with the power to prey upon the human mind itself, drawing forth a person’s worst nightmare images or most treasured dreams and indiscriminately giving them life.

Twelve centuries after fate first stranded the colonists on Erna, mankind has achieved an uneasy stalemate, and human sorcerers manipulate the fae for their own profit, little realizing that demonic forces which feed upon such efforts are rapidly gaining in strength.  Now, as the hordes of the dark fae multiply, four people are about to be drawn inexorably together for a mission which will force them to confront an evil beyond their imagining, in a conflict which will put not only their own lives but the very fate of humankind in jeopardy.Read More


When True Night Falls

When True Night Falls

DAW Books – 1993
ISBN: 0886776155
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With her ground-breaking fantasy novel, Black Sun Rising, C.S. Friedman introduced readers to a world far-distant from Earth, a beautiful planet which at first appeared to be an ideal home for humankind.  But the seismic activity which periodically took its toll of the world of Erna was only the most obvious of the trials with which the colonists would be faced.  For there were other powers at work upon the planet, chief among them the fae–a terrifying force of nature with the power to prey upon the human mind itself, indiscriminately drawing forth a person’s worst nightmare visions or most treasured dreams and bringing them to life.  For twelve centuries, humanity’s survival has been defined by its battle with the fae, but recently the ranks of the dark fae have begun to increase dramatically and unless something drastic is done to shift the balance, humanity may soon face a final terrifying descent into oblivion.

When True Night Falls returns to Erna at a crucial time in this undeclared war.  Over the years, five attempts have been made to cross the planet’s greatest ocean and settle the lands in the east.  But the Novatlantic Divide, riddled with active volcanoes and fae-born dangers, has apparently swallowed each expedition in its turn, leaving the fates of these explorers forever veiled in mystery.Read More


Crown of Shadows

Crown of Shadows

DAW Books – 1995
ISBN: 0886777178
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In the first two volumes of her acclaimed Coldfire trilogy, C.S. Friedman introduced readers to the beautiful but treacherous world of Erna, where humanity has fought a desperate struggle for survival against the fae–a force of nature which responds to the human psyche, indiscriminately bringing to life a person’s most treasured dreams or hideous nightmares.

For more than a millennium now Erna’s humans have maintained an uneasy stalemate with the fae, with adepts and sorcerers working for their own profit while the demonic creatures who feed upon such efforts rapidly gain power and ambition.  Now one of these demons, a Iezu called Calesta, has declared war on all of mankind.Read More


The Coldfire Trilogy: Author Notes

The Coldfire Trilogy: Author Notes

Ironically, not only was Isaac Asimov the author whose writing seduced me into a life-long love affair with science fiction, he would establish the ground rules for my fantasy writing also. In an essay written for Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, he explained “Why I do not believe in Magic.” If magic really existed, he argued, it would be a natural force like any other, subject to the same laws and limitations that governed all natural forces. There would be Laws of Magic that could be studied and tested. Magic would be consistent with the First Law of Thermodynamics (energy can neither be destroyed nor created, only changed in form) and the Second (left to its own devices, energy tends to disperse). Because these things are rarely true in fantasy novels, he wrote that he was not able to manage the suspension of disbelief necessary to enjoy them.

He was right, of course. And I will add another condition to the list: magic as a natural force should be neither good nor evil, any more than fire, water, or wind is good or evil. Like fire, it should be useful when controlled, dangerous if uncontrolled. The fact that we build windmills does not mean we stop fearing hurricanes.Read More


Dominion

Dominion

Tridac Publishing – 2011
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Four hundred years after mankind’s arrival on Erna, the undead sorcerer Gerald Tarrant travels north in search of a legend. For it is rumored there is a forest where the fae has become so powerful that it devours all who enter it, and he means to test its power.

This novella prequel to C.S. Friedman’s bestselling Coldfire Trilogy offers fans of the series a tale of Tarrant’s secret history, while new readers will enjoy a chilling introduction to one of High Fantasy’s most fascinating–and deadly–worlds.Read More