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Spherical Harmonic: A Novel in the Saga of the Skolian Empire (Saga of the Skolian Empire #7)

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  644 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
Catherine Asaro is a popular SF writer, combining her diverse talents to blend hard science fiction and heartrending romance into a sweeping epic known as the Saga of the Skolian Empire. This is her trademark series. Ever since Primary Inversion, her very first novel, this series has continued to grow, building a significant readership and receiving widespread praise.

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ebook, 512 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Tor Books (first published 2001)
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Jan 04, 2013 Darth rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This felt more more like a soap opera than I care for.
It seemed to be 90% recap of the events of other books in this series along with how this made the women in univcerse feel, and 10% the unlikely bloodless coup cum coalition forming of new government.

The liking or not of this book appears to be chromosomally linked to the presence or absense of the y. XX seems to find this wondrous true to life imagining of far future lands and peoples.

Those holding XY seem to think it is boring, and perhap
Joe Karpierz
Apr 27, 2014 Joe Karpierz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
SPHERICAL HARMONIC is one of four novels that deal with the aftermath of the Radiance War. Each novel in the group (ASCENDANT SUN, THE QUANTOM ROSE, SPHERICAL HARMONIC, and THE MOON'S SHADOW, overlaps with the other three, each with a different main character. The character we follow in SPHERICAL HARMONIC is Dyhianna Selei, the current Ruby Pharaoh, titular head of the Ruby Dynasty, but really just a figurehead when it comes to ruling the Skolian Empire.

When last we saw her, Dyhianna had escaped
Summary: A slightly more thoughtful and less action packed and less romantic (fortunately) look at the scolian universe. I liked this book with its gentle but dominant central character.

Plotline: The basic plot was pretty good and worked well with the premise.

Premise: Interesting. Not fully convinced it would really work, but different too most SF.

Writing: Good bits were good, well described, strong characters

Ending: All set up for next books in the series

Pace: Never a dull moment!
John Loyd
Apr 07, 2015 John Loyd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Spherical Harmonic (2001) 346 pages by Catherine Asaro.

When we last saw Dyhianna "Dehya" Selei in the Radiant Seas the Traders had boarded the orbiter and were chasing her, Eldrin and Taquinil. Eldrin was captured by the traders while she and Taquinil escaped into the Lock and disappeared into the psiberweb/Kyle space. When Spherical Harmonic starts Dehya wakes up very confused on the moon Opalite. As the first few chapters pass she starts remembering more. This is probably to catch up readers w
Rebecca Sheehy
Oct 10, 2012 Rebecca Sheehy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read the entire Saga of the Skolian empire...some volumes multiple times. I think what draws me to these books is that not only is the science based on actual theories, making it a "hard science fiction" world rather than a magic one, but Asaro lets the character development and imagery flower..something that more traditional hard scifi writers tend not to do. This book in particular is absorbing because of the intricate mathematical theories that overlay the very real political and perso ...more
Feb 25, 2012 Rainbowjay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've thought about how to write a review for this book. I liked it, no I loved it but how to describe it? Well, anyone who's read Catherine Asaro knows her writing and stories and this is another fine example. The thing that makes this book hard to explain is the math and science. I liked science in school as long as real math wasn't involved and loved math when we got to algebra 2 were no numbers were used. This math and science was over my head but I sort of understood it. I really wouldn't re ...more
Feb 08, 2014 Joy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Ruby Pharaoh, Dehya Skolia (to much simplify her name), emerges from Kyle space after an escape from deadly Aristos. She finds herself without her memory, on a primitive planet whose food is poison to her. From there, her job is to find her family and reinstate them in power. For a long time her family's power has been as figureheads only, during which they were maltreated as breeding stock by an increasingly desperate Assembly. This is Dehya's chance to place her family in a position to be ...more
Feb 29, 2016 Kimmerie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My least favorite of the series

This one is always a slog when I'm rereading the series. Dehya is the least relatable of all the characters in this universe, and this book is disjointed and patchy.
Additionally, the kindle version is almost unreadable due to the numerous OCR scanning errors. Someone please fix and rerelease this??
Jul 13, 2014 T rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Despite the often clunky writing, I've gotten pretty invested in the Skolian Empire universe/characters. And it's cool how Asaro uses her physics and math knowledge in various ways (as with spherical harmonics in this one, or the fact that The Quantum Rose was an allegory for coupled-channel quantum scattering theory).
Apr 18, 2012 Cat rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I liked finally getting to spend time reading Dyhianna's storyline. One of the nice things about reading enough volumes in Asaro's Skolian universe, eventually she fills in the missing pieces.

It did make me ponder what it might be like to read all the books not in publishing order, but plotline/universe order.
Apr 08, 2016 Ellie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Ruby Pharaoh of the Skolian Empire comes out of Kyle space disoriented and some distance from her rendezvous point. With a little luck and some tenacity, she is able to step back in her political role and create upheaval among the political structure that has dominated her and her family's lives for too long.
Mar 02, 2012 Richard rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Descriptions are given priority over story substance. The relationships between characters and family members is too complex. Perhaps it is good Romance writing, but I don't believe that it is good Science Fiction.
Jenny Jeffries
I have been reading these out of order, but they still make stand alone reading. Recommend starting at the first and working through. Love that they overlap and are from different perspectives throughout.
Jun 03, 2015 Susan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club, 2005, 2001
re-read 2/13/2005
re-read 5/29/2014

You have to pay ATTENTION when reading this one.

The Ruby Pharaoh has escaped the Eubians by stepping into a singularity/lock! Can she come back?

and ick cover by John Harris
Jan 04, 2014 Elyndrical rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The start really dragged, so much so I almost put this book down despite absolutely loving every other book in the saga. Instead I stuck with it and about 20% of the way through things really picked up.
Oct 30, 2007 Whitney rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! This book really ties up all the loose ends and missing pieces of the many stories in the Skolian saga.
Karin Granström
Jun 13, 2013 Karin Granström rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally I got to see how the much heralded coup was done! A book with excitement and pathos that filled in a lot of gaps in the storyweb of this saga.
Jan 09, 2012 Random rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Enjoyed the book, but the narrator wasn't a good choice and didn't do that good of a job. Add in all of the miss pronunciations, and I'd recommend sticking with print or ebook editions if possible.
Kelly Linzey
Apr 06, 2010 Kelly Linzey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
what I really like about this author and her stories are how many of them are parts of the story being filled in by different characters. It really rounds out the world(s) these people live in.
Dec 16, 2015 Elar rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Again little bit more theoretical book and it shows previous events from new angle. Never the less I enjoyed mathematically sound fantastic universe building .
Dan Edwards
Dan Edwards rated it liked it
Apr 09, 2010
Michael Bernstein
Michael Bernstein rated it really liked it
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Lindsay rated it it was amazing
Feb 14, 2011
Raechel rated it it was amazing
Dec 18, 2009
Tiah rated it really liked it
Dec 16, 2011
Inna rated it it was ok
Mar 27, 2016
Alyssa Louie
Alyssa Louie rated it liked it
Apr 20, 2009
Lynne rated it it was amazing
Apr 19, 2012
Lene rated it it was ok
Mar 17, 2012
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The author of more than twenty-five books, Catherine Asaro is acclaimed for her Ruby Dynasty series, which combines adventure, science, romance and fast-paced action. Her novel The Quantum Rose won the Nebula Award, as did her novella “The Spacetime Pool.” Among her many other distinctions, she is a multiple winner of the AnLab from Analog magazine a
More about Catherine Asaro...

Other Books in the Series

Saga of the Skolian Empire (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • Primary Inversion (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #1)
  • Catch the Lightning (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #2)
  • The Last Hawk (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #3)
  • The Radiant Seas (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #4)
  • Ascendant Sun (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #5)
  • The Quantum Rose (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #6)
  • The Moon's Shadow (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #8)
  • Skyfall (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #9)
  • Schism (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #10; The Triad, #1)
  • The Final Key (Saga of the Skolian Empire, #11; The Triad, #2)

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