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Unconquerable Sun

(The Sun Chronicles #1)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  609 ratings  ·  158 reviews
It has been eight centuries since the beacon system failed, sundering the heavens. Rising from the ashes of the collapse, cultures have fought, system-by-system, for control of the few remaining beacons. The Republic of Chaonia is one such polity. Surrounded by the Yele League and the vast Phene Empire, they have had to fight for their existence. After decades of conflict, ...more
Kindle Edition, 528 pages
Published October 1st 2020 by Head of Zeus - an AdAstra Book (first published July 7th 2020)
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Average rating 4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  609 ratings  ·  158 reviews

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May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Military sci-fi/space-opera readers
ARC provided by the publishers—Tor Books & Head of Zeus—in exchange for an honest review.

It’s quite outrageous that it took me this long to finally read Kate Elliott’s book for the very first time.

I’ve heard many good things about Kate Elliott’s books. Black Wolves, Crossroads, Spiritwalker, and recently Crown of Stars (despite this being the oldest out of the series I mentioned) are series that I’ve seen occasionally in social media. But for whatever reasons, I just haven’t gotten around to the
Skymarks (Rainy)
if yall gon write genderbend alex the great yall better write genderbend hepaestion too 👀👀👀
Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard
could Tor stop trying to take all my money? For like just one day? That'd be great.

Well it appears TOR heard me because WTF is that cover?

Actual review
Well...wasn't everything I was hoping for. I found myself pretty bored for the last half of the book.
Jul 14, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq
Actual Rating: 4.5 stars

If you like epic sci-fi with political intrigue, an interesting cast of characters, and plenty of action, then I would definitely recommend checking out Unconquerable Sun. This is pitched as a gender-flipped Alexander the Great, and halfway through the book I did a little reading on his life. It's interesting to see how this takes key events and characters from real history and puts them in a completely different setting.

Princess Sun wants nothing more than her mother's
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I've heard this referred to as "gender-bending Alexander the Great in space" and that might be true. Court intrigue, warring families and factions that control vast planetary systems, budding romances and older political romances, characters who struggle between destiny and desire; military conquest and quantum space travel. I also had to look up some words for this one, like oleaginous.

In a discussion in the Sword and Laser group, I mentioned that in some ways this could be in the same univers
Mar 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars! If "Gender-swapped Alexander the Great in space" isn't the best concept for a book ever, then it's pretty high up there, so I've been eagerly anticipating this book this since I first heard about. I was super excited when I won a copy in a giveaway from Tor and I'm glad to say it did not disappoint! It's a space opera that just FEELS large, full of fascinating, diverse characters, wild futuristic cultures (there are people with four arms! and others with glowing skin!) and plenty of d ...more
I'll be reviewing this book more in depth in an upcoming video -- subscribe here so you don't miss out!

I'll be honest, "gender-swapped Alexander the Great retelling set in space" was all I needed to know about Unconquerable Sun -- it immediately got added to the "most anticipated books of the year" list. Having only read, but absolutely adored, one book by Kate Elliott before, I knew she'd be able to pull of a book with such an epic scope.

Unconquerable Sun is an ambitious start to an epic new sc
Holly (The Grimdragon)
"It rises out of the sea like the huge cables of a giant suspension bridge have gotten loose and are lashing this way and that, cutting through wind and waves. Each cable is a living neck, bronze and glossy, and each neck ends in a vast horned head. Their jaws aren't quite big enough to bite our boats in half, but if even one of the necks slams down full force onto our boat it will crush and sink us."

Kate Elliott, pen name for Alis A. Rasmussen, is an author that I've been meaning to get into, w
Jul 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks, 2020
Everything I expected and more. Longer RTC.
Apr 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If there’s one thing you should know about me and Alexander the Great retellings/re-imaginings, it’s that Unconquerable Sun is the only one I’ve ever read. My AtG knowledge is severely lacking. But now I feel I at least know something. Alexander the Great was an interplanetary and intergalactic conqueror. (Did I get that right, your historianlyship?)

Anyway, your literatureship, I just want to say that…wow I loved this book. There are multiple perspectives that each offer something unique to the
Sep 09, 2017 marked it as to-read-so-bad-it-hurts  ·  review of another edition
Genderbend Alexander the Great as space opera? Tor knows my reading preferences \O/
Jun 02, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020-reads
Unconquerable Sun hooked me on the premise of a genderbent Alexander the Great. And with further research, Kate Elliot confirmed that it was sapphic. Amd while the sapphic elements were there, they took the backseat to a character who one, isn’t the Alexander the Great equivalency, Sun, and two, is a complete mess of a bi/pansexual stereotype. While the plot kept me reading, the characters, the worldbuilding, and the clunky writing really made me wish that I hadn’t. But sometimes you persevere s ...more
Sep 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Politics, warfare and personal drama. Accomplished space opera with delightfully non-Western trimmings in spite of its Macedonian inspiration. Closes out its key arcs (so can be read as a stand alone) whilst neatly setting up characters and conflicts for future books.

I received a free copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Provisional 4 stars until I reflect and figure out where I stand through my review
Nov 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
YES. Could not put this down, and I immediately wanted to give it to all my sci-fi loving friends so I can talk with them about how great the reimagining of Alexander the Great’s story is, how well the gender-swapping works, and how phenomenal the space opera setting & pacing is in this book. ...more
Sep 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unconquerable Sun is the first instalment in bestselling science fiction writer Kate Elliott's stunning new space opera series, The Sun Chronicles, and spins a refreshingly original yarn. Princess Sun has finally come of age. Growing up in the shadow of her mother, Eirene, has been no easy task. The legendary queen-marshal did what everyone thought impossible: expel the invaders and build Chaonia into a magnificent republic, one to be respected―and feared. But the cutthroat ambassador corps and ...more
charlotte, (½ of readsrainbow)
Listen and learn, my unconquerable Sun.

On my blog.

Rep: lesbian mc, bi mc, bi side character, mlm & wlw side characters

Galley provided by publisher

The first Kate Elliott book I ever read was Cold Magic a good few years back, and that book, and the series as a whole really, firmly cemented her as one of my favourite authors. The next one was Black Wolves (and yes, I am still incredibly bitter there won’t be a sequel to it, with that ending!), which I loved just as much. So, obviously, I ha
Sep 29, 2017 marked it as 2020-releases  ·  review of another edition
I really don't know very much about Alexander the Great, other than he really liked wearing Persian pants. But if this is anything like And I Darken, which I love then this will be good.
Lady H
Sep 10, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: tbr-scifi
yesssss i can finally add this book to my TBR without suffering that other cover
I don't know what hour of the #Readathon it is now, I got sidetracked by a last minute social distancing visit. But I finally finished this book, which I loved! One of my fav reads of 2020. An incredibly intricate, deftly weaved space opera with a majority queer cast. Action-packed and fascinating women characters who are not made likable or palatable. Very cool world-building too! Oh yeah this is a gender-swapped retelling of Alexander the Great. More later, gotta keep reading!
Apr 28, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: excited
i have LONGED FOR a genderbent alexander the great for almost a decade give it to me!! give me all the gay!!!!!
May 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing. Full review to come.
Sep 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: net-galley, arc, 2020, sci-fi, lgbtq
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley. All thoughts are my own.

I admit, the start of this book was pretty rocky for me. The first two or so chapters that introduced Sun and her dad were great, but after that, I just found the first 30% an absolute slog. Partially, it had to do with the absolutely ham-fisted worldbuilding. I’m one of the weirdos that doesn’t mind authors info-dumping, but author’s attempting to disguise info-dumps through characters asking other characters questions th
Sep 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
I’ve been growing a bit bored of epic fantasy recently and reaching for some space opera that was not purely military sci-fi. Something that has the expansive world-building feel of say Game of Thrones, with great characters, gripping intrigue, cool tech and was ‘alien’ enough that earth – if there ever was such a place in this universe – is a so distant a memory as to be irrelevant.

Unconquerable Sun is what I have been looking for. I loved this book. It is fantastic.

Now I have read Kate Ell
Jul 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was initially dubious about the premise - a gender swapped Alexander the Great in space - but I should not have doubted one of my all time favourite authors. The story is much more than that bare synopsis. The outline and names may owe much to that mighty comet who blazed across Greece, Asia and North Africa but Sun and her companions are their own persons. Furthermore I am in love with, and in awe of, Kate's writing style which is so distinctive and yet becomes clearer with each novel.

This fi
Kayla (krakentoagoodbook)
I really enjoyed this! This is such a cool concept, and I'm excited to see where this story goes.

I liked all of the characters for the most part! Princess Sun is certainly more aloof, but she has some badass moments. Persephone, our 1st person POV character, was probably my favorite. I thought she was clever and the most relatable of the characters. Finally, Apama, our other POV character, was quite interesting! She's one of the Phene, which is a species that generally has exoskeletons. However,
Oct 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Might write an actual review later but this book is GOOD
May 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*copy from Netgalley in exchange for a review*

Before I get into the detail: Unconquerable Sun is incredible. It blends tightly written heart-pounding sci-fi action with sharply observed and complex characterisation, in a richly detailed universe. It had me turning pages at 2AM, wanting to know what happened and not wanting the story to end. If you’re a fan of military sci-fi, this is for you. If you’re a fan of politics, intrigue and family drama with the occasional bout of lasers, this is for y
Apr 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was so good. I will happily read just about anything related to Alexander the Great, but I tend to be very judgmental about how he's represented. Elliott nails it. Even genderswapped (most of the recognizable historical figures are genderswapped, but this is also set in a far future when gender roles don't seem to exist anymore, so it's essentially irrelevant in-universe) and in spaceships, he's totally recognizable in both his interactions with his Companions and in his tactics. I absolute ...more
laurel [the suspected bibliophile]
DNF at 4%

Just not feeling it. Was getting the same vibes as I had with Lady Hotspur, where the beginning was a bold choice of noun, noun, noun and lots of things that would probably be pieced together later.

Maybe I'll pick it up again, maybe not.

I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review.
I’ve heard so many great things about Kate Elliott (and have several of her fantasy novels on my TBR) and was really excited to read this one - the moment I saw the tagline I was hooked by the idea. Alexander the Great is a historical behemoth, surrounded by so much myth and legend (which I admittedly don’t know well), yet there’s relatively little SFF inspired by him/the time period more generally.

And from that perspective, this didn’t disappoint. This is an epic space opera, jam packed with po
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As a child in rural Oregon, Kate Elliott made up stories because she longed to escape to a world of lurid adventure fiction. She now writes fantasy, steampunk, and science fiction, often with a romantic edge. She currently lives in Hawaii, where she paddles outrigger canoes and spoils her schnauzer.

Other books in the series

The Sun Chronicles (3 books)
  • Furious Heaven (The Sun Chronicles, #2)
  • Lady Chaos (The Sun Chronicles, #3)

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