Cover: Mick van Houten. Another cover by Arnie Fenner.
Against the backdrop of the Gaean Reach, the widely populated region of space where the full diversity of human development is revealed, the story of Jaro Fath unfolds: from wildling orphan to spaceship captain, a tale of adventure and discovery wittily told.
Jaro's life is directed by an inner voice he cannot account for... until he returns to Kammerwelt, described in The Handbook of Planets as the fourth world in the entourage of Robert Palmer's Star, drifting in a far-flung sector of the galaxy known as the Dragon's Maw. Jaro is haunted by memories of his dead mother's terror, and he's about to find out why...
John Holbrook "Jack" Vance (1916–2013) was an American mystery, fantasy and science fiction writer. Though most of his work has been published as by Jack Vance, he also wrote 11 mystery novels using his full name John Holbrook Vance, three under the pseudonym Ellery Queen, and once each using the pseudonyms Alan Wade, Peter Held, John van See, and Jay Kavanse.
Vance won the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement in 1984 and he was a Guest of Honor at the 1992 World Science Fiction Convention in Orlando, Florida. The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America made him its 14th Grand Master in 1997 and the Science Fiction Hall of Fame inducted him in 2001, its sixth class of two deceased and two living writers.