Darkover is a series of science fiction novels written by Mercedes Lackey. The books follow the exploit of various characters as they live their lives and pursue adventures in a distant corner of space.
Order of Darkover Series
|1||Different Kind of Courage||1985||Description / Buy|
|2||Set a Thief||1991||Description / Buy|
|3||Rediscovery||1993||Description / Buy|
|4||Poetic License||1994||Description / Buy|
|5||An Object Lesson||2010||Description / Buy|
Darkover is not Mercedes Lackey’s creation. Before Lackey started writing professionally, she produced fanfiction, and one of her more interesting projects was the work she did in the Darkover Universe, work that eventually became five for-pay stories that Marion Zimmer Bradley published.
Marion invented the Darkover universe. She went so far as to trademark the name Darkover. Her contemporaries at the time believed that the series would eventually achieve the same status and renown as The Foundation.
The series takes readers into the future. A long time ago, humanity sent ships out to space. One ship malfunctioned and eventually crashed on the planet of Darkover.
Its occupants tried and eventually failed to repair it. So they decided to set up a new colony. In the centuries that followed, the people of Darkover grew and thrived and changed.
Some among them developed special mental powers. These psionic abilities allowed them to muster technologies that had escaped their Terran counterparts. And yet life on Darkover was hardly peaceful.
The society underwent many transformations over the course of its existence. And Marion Zimmer Bradley played a crucial role in the shepherding of the Darkover Universe through its most critical stages.
Mercedes Lackey only came into the picture in 1983. Her first contribution to the series was Rediscovery.
Most novels and short stories in this universe can stand on their own. They feature concepts that move the series as a whole forward. But their connective tissue isn’t so strong that you have to read them in a particular order.
That being said, Rediscovery was a very important book for the Darkover series. It was within the confines of the novel that the denizens of the Darkover universe finally reconnected with the people of earth.
After traversing eras such as the Ages of Chaos and the Hundred Kingdoms, and even the Comyn, the people of Darkover thought they had undergone as much change as they were ever going to encounter.
But then a ship sent by the Terran Empire to determine the whereabouts of some of its lost colonies actually came upon Darkover.
Through a series of events, Terran/Darkover relations where established and the people of Darkover were placed on an entirely new path with an unknown destiny.
Lackey’s Darkover stories are sometimes obscured by the mountain of novels and novellas that other authors, including Bradley herself, have added to the Darkover Universe.
Rediscovery always stands out because it plays such an important role in the Darkover timeline. But you shouldn’t be too surprised if you come across people who say they have read the Darkover books but they have never encountered Object Lesson, Set a Thief and the various other Mercedes Lackey Darkover works.
Best Darkover Books
The Darkover novels are typically praised for their epic scope and distinct exploration of alien worlds, with some of the best books in the series including:
Rediscovery: Leonie Hastur is somewhat special. She is a telepath with incredible powers. But Leonie is far from satisfied. She is determined to become a keeper of Arilinn Tower. Doing so will put her on par with her twin brother.
Leonie is forced to reconsider her priorities when she receives a disturbing premonition.
Meanwhile, Ysaye Barnett loves the life she lives on her ship. She doesn’t mind spending her days surrounded by computers. An encounter with a new culture changes everything.
Object Lesson: Varzil thought that the peace he had brought to the land would be a lasting one. After all, he had just ended the Iaran Wars. But things are not so simple. If others have their way, there’s at least one more fight waiting ahead.
Other Book Series You May Like
Another fun series is the “Avalon” Series by Marion Zimmer Bradley. These books are set in the time of King Arthur. But the stories they tell follow the journeys of the women who influenced the throne behind the scenes, figures like Eilan, the fated Priestess of the Forest House.
Be sure to check out “The Fall of Atlantis” Series by Marion Zimmer Bradley as well. These books chronicle the epic clash between good and evil, centering on the conflict between the Priests of the White Robe and the Sorcerers of the Black Robe as they attempt to determine the fate of the land.
What Is The Next Book in The Darkover Series?
There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Darkover Series. The newest book is An Object Lesson and was released on June, 29th 2010.