The Company is a science fiction series of novels from author Kage Baker that plays with the concept of time travel.
Order of The Company Series
|1||In the Garden of Iden||1997||Description / Buy|
|2||Sky Coyote||1999||Description / Buy|
|3||Mendoza in Hollywood||2000||Description / Buy|
|4||The Graveyard Game||2001||Description / Buy|
|5||The Life of the World to Come||2004||Description / Buy|
|6||The Children of the Company||2005||Description / Buy|
|7||The Machine's Child||2006||Description / Buy|
|8||Rude Mechanicals (Short Story)||2007||Description / Buy|
|9||The Sons of Heaven||2007||Description / Buy|
|10||The Empress of Mars||2009||Description / Buy|
|11||Not Less Than Gods||2009||Description / Buy|
|12||In the Company of Thieves||2013||Description / Buy|
The series takes place in the 24th century and revolves around Dr. Zeus, which is the name of a company of scientists that have stumbled upon time travel. The cabal intends to use the technology to reach into the past and acquire elements and items that can benefit the present. Because of the complexities of time travel, this company operates in secret and they often purpose to carry out their objectives without affecting historical timelines.
This means, for instance, only stealing rare plants and manuscripts and paintings if history records them as having been destroyed in a fire. In order to execute its operations, Dr. Zeus relies on agents that have been turned into cyborgs, essentially making them immortal.
Because these agents have accurate records of historical occurrences, they are able to slip through the past without changing events as they are supposed to happen. The Company series follows the exploits of one particular operative by the name of Mendoza. Found as a young girl that had been sold by her parents, Mendoza is rescued from the inquisition by Dr. Zeus and recruited into the organization which bestows mechanical enhancements upon her and deploys her to do their bidding.
Mendoza isn’t the most effective operative. While she knows how to carry out her duties, she isn’t always in control of her emotions and it isn’t long before she falls in love with a gentleman from sixteenth-century England; this sets her up for unexpected adventures down the line.
The Company is a rather complex collection of novels boasting a massive cast of operatives and civilians who meander through the past and the present. The books are all connected and must be read in order for one to understand events as they unfold.
The author, Kage Baker, was accused of introducing so many plots and threads that she was unable to bring all of them to produce a satisfying end.
The Company Awards
Kage Baker received a John W. Campbell Nomination (Best Book), a Hugo Award Nomination and a World Fantasy Award nomination for books in The Company series. She also won the Nebula Award in 2009 for a novella set in the Company universe.
Best The Company Books
Kage Baker isn’t exactly a household name, but her Company stories left a mark on the science fiction genre, with some of the best books in the series including:
In the Garden of Iden: The Company is a cabal from the 24th century that goes into the past and takes paintings, plants and whatever items they believe have value and can turn a profit in the future. To execute their goals, the Company has special operatives that have been mechanically enhanced, making them immortal and more than capable of dealing with the rigors of moving through time and acquiring rare items.
Once such immortal operative is Mendoza; recruited as a young girl after her parents left her to the wrath of the Inquisition after she was accused of witchcraft, Mendoza is a botanist that is sent to Elizabethan England to acquire the samples of a special plant.
During her time in the past, Mendoza meets and falls in love with Nicholas Harpole who changes her life forever.
The first book in The Company is advertised as a science fiction book but the story it tells is more romance than anything. Mendoza takes center stage as a teenage cyborg whose job it is to bring extinct plant species from the past to the future.
The Graveyard Game: Mendoza worked for a company called Dr. Zeus. It was her job as a preserver to bring plant species from the past to the present. Killing six people in 1863 wasn’t part of her mission so she was disappeared by her employers.
As a senior preserver, Joseph doesn’t take Mendoza’s disappearance lying down. He always saw her as a daughter and he determines to find her wherever they had hidden her, a task he is more than capable of accomplishing as an immortal cyborg.
Other Book Series You May Like
You may also enjoy the “Man-Kzin Wars” by numerous authors (including Larry Niven, Warren W. James, and David Bartell). This is a collection of science fiction short stories that detail the war between mankind and the kzinti. Fans of Larry Nivens will be happy to know that these stories are set in the Known Space world.
The “Felix Castor” Series by Mike Carey is a great read as well. These novels detail the exploits of a freelance exorcist who uses his skills to keep London safe from supernatural threats.
What Is The Next Book in The Company Series?
There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Company Series. The newest book is In the Company of Thieves and was released on January, 1st 2013.