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The Kif Strike Back (Chanur, #3)
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The Kif Strike Back (Chanur #3)

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  2,021 Ratings  ·  28 Reviews
When the kif seized Hilfy and Tully, hani and human crew of The Pride of Chanur, they issued a challenge Pyanfar, captain of Pride, couldn't ignore, a challenge that was to take Pyanfar and her shipmates to Mkks station and into a deadly confrontation between kif, hani, mahendo'sat, and human. And what began as a simple rescue attempt soon blossomed into a dangerous game o ...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published March 5th 1991 by DAW Books, Inc (first published 1985)
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Jan 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
It took me a while to finish this one, mainly because it's difficult. A major part of the plot is "what are certain members of this alien race called the kif doing and planning to do?" and in Cherryh's inimitable way, the critters are so alien that they're extremely hard to understand. It doesn't help that the point-of-view character, Pyanfar Chanur, doesn't understand them either. Nor does that fact that *she's* also a nonhuman, although since she's vaguely lion-like she's a lot easier to get a ...more
La historia de ‘La venganza de Chanur’ (The Kif Strike Back, 1985) continúa exactamente donde se quedó el anterior libro, ‘La aventura de Chanur’, con Hilfy y Tully en manos de los kif. La capitana Pyanfar Chanur y su tripulación no lo tendrán nada fácil para intentar liberar a sus amigos, y para lidiar con los tejemanejes políticos al más alto nivel. Y es que se está jugando el futuro del Pacto. Mahendo’sat, Stsho, Kif y Hani están implicados. Unos ven una oportunidad de ampliar el comercio con ...more
Peter Tillman
Classic Cherryh. Reread just now. Love the Whelan cover art!

Here's a better copy of the map of Compact Space:

"The t'ca [ship] left them, rolled and slewed off in a maneuver that made sense to a multi-brained snake." [!!]

This is a hard read, with a lot to keep track of. As another reviewer here pointed out. Pretty much fat-free.... Strong stuff.

Cherryh commented that the first Chanur book was a standalone, but #2-4 were really just one novel, split into 3
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had hoped to hold my review to the end of the series and write one review for all, but I started reading these in Kindle edition not realizing the last two books are not in eBook format! I immediately emailed Penguin. So strange that they would split up a trilogy like this.

SO. This series! The world building! She does such an amazing job creating these very different races, and describing humanity from an outside perspective. I love the space action and technical bits (how long since I read a
Sep 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
They say that you should choose the lesser of two evils and that better the devil you know. One would think that to be a perfect guideline when struggle for power between two great hakkikts unleashed a civil war among the kif species. After all, the rest of Compact space would have to deal with the winner, so it’s logical to try and put ‘your’ kif in power. However, for Pyanfar Chanur it’s not even a matter of choice: hakkikt Sikkukkut decided he would benefit from having Chanur and mahe allies ...more
Jun 23, 2016 rated it liked it
Storyline: 2/5
Characters: 3/5
Writing Style: 1/5
World: 3/5

This is the book that should have followed the first. The second, Chanur's Venture, should have been cut down to about a fifth of the size and merged with this one. This one as it is was a satisfactory continuation of the series.

It seemed eventful in comparison to the last. Still, a large portion of the book is taken up by descriptions of communications coming in over the headsets and the spacer's duties reading displays. It is only with t
Ted Cooper
Jun 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This rating is for the entire Chanur sequence, as they're basically one long story.

Cherryh throws lot of weird jumbled stuff from human cultures, arguably racist stereotypes, animal characteristics, and the general science fiction/fantasy trope of other cultures being obsessed with silly abstract concepts into the Compact sapient species, but 1) they're very entertaining to read about, and 2) she does a pretty good job of coming up with basic cognitive differences, following these differences to
Norma Reasor
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite series. On my have-to-reread list. I've gone through a few paper backed copies since the series first came out, and I'll read them all again in a couple years. Cherry's books are always fast paced and engrossing.
May 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: sf
A bizarre mixture of being intensely dull but, elsewhere, frustratingly good.
Sep 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pyanfar Chanur and her crew strive to survive while caught up in a Kif civil war. This is good space opera. There is plenty of action which includes dockside fighting and desperate voyages between stars. The various species of the "Compact" work from limited knowledge and come into conflict as they pursue their own interests. The reasons for their actions aren't always clear. There is plenty of dirty dealing and derring-do and sometimes old enemies must team up to pull through tough times.
Oct 11, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: space opera buffs
Shelves: sciencefiction
I first read the Chanur books in college, and this paperback is from then. It was in a friend's basement from then 'til now.

C. J. Cherryh knows how to write a space opera. Her books (the Chanur books at any rate) are thoroughly plotted and fast moving. The characters always seem about as confused, frustrated and interested as I am, revealing the mystery in dribs and drabs while cranking up the tension all the while. The universe the author has created is intriguing, fun and threatening all at on
Lynnda Ell
May 26, 2010 rated it did not like it
(continued from Chanur's Venture)

Yes, I gave The Kif Strike Back only one star. I'm sure you can guess the reason. Just in case you didn't read the first part of my review, I'll say it clearly. This "book" contains only the middle of a story - no beginning and no end.

In the Author's Note, C.J. Cherryh states her rational for betraying her fans: the publishing distribution system made me do it, writing three good beginnings, middles, and ends for trilogies are too hard, and besides, the risks of
Lisa Flowers
Sep 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So nice to see publishers rereleasing classics

Classic science fiction at its finest; that's how I would consider C.J. Cherryh. And her Chanur series, with the intricate play of politics and being written from an entirely alien view, with the HUMAN being the unfathomable outsider, was an amazing leap in the 1980s which has well stood the test of time. Fast paced, intelligently written, with an extremely interesting non-human protagonist - this is one of my favorites from teenagerhood, but it is d
Nov 03, 2011 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: insomniacs
Shelves: abandoned
I think I've only ever abandoned less than half a dozen books in my life out of hundreds read. This is one more. I got about halfway through, realized that turning pages was a chore, I didn't care one little bit about the story or anyone in it, and it didn't seem like it was going anywhere. The whole series should probably have been one book.

GoodReads doesn't let me choose my custom shelf as the final resting place, so I categorized this as 'read' but only to get it off my lists.
Lian Tanner
Nov 06, 2012 rated it liked it
A slightly more satisfying ending for this one, though I'd be deeply frustrated and annoyed if I had to wait for the next in the series to be published. The world of the story continues to intrigue me, the politics are more tortuous than ever and the main characters are fascinating. I'm off to hunt down the next book.
Laura Guill
Jun 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction, 2014
So much seems to happen in this book versus the two previous, and part of that might be because the full political situation is actually explained. Enough so that I wish a bit of this exposition had been included in the might have helped with understanding/enjoyment.
Dec 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: space-opera
Brilliant. Good drama, language, writing, characters, and plot, all deftly woven in a tale which addresses big things such as friendship, family, loyalty, adventure, taming oneself, virtue, relating to outsiders, and politics.
Of the title, C.J. Cherryh has said "Never, ever joke about titles: your publisher may use one."

First read as soon as it popped of the presses into paperback, somewhere around 1985 I think.
Devin Partlow
Oct 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
The broken English is still making this a hard series to get through, but that hasn't stopped me from coming back for more.
Apr 30, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, future
Two and a half stars. After Chanur's Venture this really feels like wheel-spinning.
Mar 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
pt 2 of 3, again ending abruptly
Apr 09, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommended to Julie by: D
D and I had soooo many in-jokes related to these books... I did really like them. They are gritty sci-fi and I might like them even more if I read them now.
Sep 26, 2012 added it
Norman Howe
May 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
The second book in Cherryh's Chanur series. My only quibble is about the title: an obvious nod to the Star Wars film"," and a hint that there are more stories to come.
Sheryl Tribble
Jan 05, 2012 rated it liked it
I liked this one better than the last -- you learn a lot more about the other races.
Aug 13, 2007 rated it liked it
big cats can fly spaceships
Fernando Gutierrez
rated it liked it
Mar 18, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Feb 16, 2013
B.H. Alsop
rated it really liked it
Apr 07, 2015
Mark Krempl
rated it it was amazing
Nov 01, 2012
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Currently resident in Spokane, Washington, C.J. Cherryh has won four Hugos and is one of the best-selling and most critically acclaimed authors in the science fiction and fantasy field. She is the author of more than forty novels. Her hobbies include travel, photography, reef culture, Mariners baseball, and, a late passion, figure skating: she intends to compete in the adult USFSA track. She began ...more
More about C.J. Cherryh...

Other Books in the Series

Chanur (5 books)
  • The Pride of Chanur (Chanur #1)
  • Chanur's Venture (Chanur #2)
  • Chanur's Homecoming (Chanur #4)
  • Chanur's Legacy (Chanur #5)
“It was a monumental achievement that the serpentine tc'a had once upon a time gotten the knnn to understand the concept of trade: so nowadays knnn simply contacted a station, rushed onto its methane-dock and deposited whatever they liked, grabbed whatever they wanted and left. This was an improvement over their former behavior, in which they simply looted and left.” 4 likes
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