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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Dark State

Dark State

A Novel of the Merchant Princes Multiverse (Empire Games, Book II)

Empire Games (Volume 2)

Charles Stross

Tor Books


Hugo Award-winning author Charlie Stross dives deep into the underbelly of paratime espionage, nuclear warfare, and state surveillance in this provocative techno-thriller set in The Merchant Princes multi-verse

Dark State
ups the ante on the already volatile situations laid out in the sleek techno-thriller Empire Games, the start to Stross' new story-line, and perfect entry point for new readers, in The Merchant Princes series.

In the near-future, the collision of two nuclear superpowers across timelines, one in the midst of a technological revolution and the other a hyper-police state, is imminent. In Commissioner Miriam Burgeson’s timeline, her top level agents run a high risk extraction of a major political player. Meanwhile, a sleeper cell activated in Rita's, the Commissioner's adopted daughter and newly-minted spy, timeline threatens to unravel everything.

With a penchant for intricate world-building and an uncanny ability to realize alternate history and technological speculation, Stross' writing will captivate any reader who's a fan hi-tech thrillers, inter-dimensional political intrigue, and espionage.

Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year

Moscow Rules


Rita Douglas’s head was spinning.

It had been scarcely twenty-eight hours since her reconnaissance mission to the time line codenamed BLACK RAIN had gone spectacularly...

Praise for Dark State

"A nightmarish clash of arms, politics, and wills... Tension crackles from every page.... Sheer brilliance: when Stross is in this mood, nobody else comes close." —Kirkus, starred review, on Dark State

"Complexly plotted and with characters to match, Dark State exceeds the promise of Empire Games." Booklist, starred review

"No one beats [Stross] at hypertech." —The Wall Street Journal on Empire Games

"A well-written book, full of mystery and intrigue, with entire worlds at stake." —Michael Flynn on Empire Games

"If imagination is the key to success for a writer, Charles Stross has it in spades." —The Times (London) on Charles Stross

Praise for The Merchant Princes series

"The keen eye and what-if imagination of Charles Stross fuel a fresh look at alternate worlds."—David Brin

“Charles Stross¹s Merchant Princes novels are economic science fiction worth reading.” —Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winner and New York Times bestselling author

“Great wit and high suspense.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“A festival of ideas in action, fast moving and often very funny.” —Locus

"A rollicking, pacy read that delivers on the fun." —Interzone


Reviews from Goodreads

Charles Stross

CHARLES STROSS was born in Leeds, England, in 1964. He has worked as a pharmacist, software engineer and freelance journalist, but now writes full-time. To date, Stross has won three Hugo Awards and been nominated twelve times. He has also won the Locus Award for Best Novel, the Locus Award for Best Novella, and has been shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke and Nebula Awards. His books include Empire Games, Dark State, The Merchant Princess series, the Laundry series, and several stand-alone novels including Glasshouse, Accelerando, and Saturn's Children.


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