The twentieth book in the beloved Foreigner saga returns to the trials of diplomat Bren Cameron, as he navigates the tenuous peace he has struck between human refugees and the alien atevi.

Bren Cameron, diplomat in residence, usually represents the ruler of the atevi state. But Ilisidi, the dowager, has been known to borrow his services from time to time–and she has her own notions how to solve the simmering hostilities in the south of the atevi continent, playing one problem against another.

This time, she is betting the hard-won northern peace–and the lives of the people–on being right. She has commandeered the Red Train, taken aboard what passengers she chooses, and headed for the snowy roof of the world, where a hard-scrabble town and its minor lord are the first pieces she intends to use.

Resurgence is out January 7, 2020. Order Now!


“They cannot anticipate your reactions; and sometimes your advice comes from directions one would have sworn were a blank wall. That, I can say.”


Another installment in the Foreigner series, another book where things are going as they go and then Bren has to take off on a mode of transportation to do something only he can do very, very quickly. If you’re surprised, you really shouldn’t be. This is book twenty. Resurgence both continues the story of the previous books and creates a potential for a new story going forward. And I really, really liked it.

In Emergence, the previous book, Bren finished what he was doing on Mospheira, and is on his way home to Shejidan to brief the aiji and return to daily life. Only before he can get there, Ilisidi is waiting for him at his home in Najida. And she is really angry because she was left out of the to-do involving her great grandson, Cajeiri, and Tatiseigi, and a bunch of danger at Tatiseigi’s home. Which all involved Cajeiri’s mother’s family, anyway. Ilisidi just likes to be in the middle of everything like the nosy old woman she is. However, everything is settled there now, so she just came to Bren to complain. They’re just waiting for the train to get free so they can head back to the capital.

But not before Machigi, the leader of the southern Marid, stops in, freaking out the security of everyone, and looking for an amendment to the treaty they already had together. This time he wants to add some provisions to improve the trains going to the Marid. Which Ilisidi goes for, because it is her life goal to see the Marid in the Aishiditat before she dies. Which is going to be a long time, since Ilisidi is never going to die, being too stubborn to even consider the notion. Plus, I’d cry, and I don’t wanna.

Meanwhile, Cajeiri has gone back home with his mother and uncle to Shejidan, to sit around worrying about things. Mostly worried about how awesome he’s doing, the precious little thing. Plus he’s getting rid of that damned monkey which HALLELUJAH PRAISE EVERYTHING! GET RID OF THE THING ALREADY! This best move in the entire series takes a while, and some money. But also, Cajeiri is expanding his household because of increased responsibility, and he’s doing so good my dear little Cajeiri. I’m so proud. In contrast with the books before this, where he was right in the middle of things, Cajeiri is actually on the periphery and Bren is in charge this book.

And Bren is in charge because Ilisidi takes off like a bolt of lightning to both set out to enact Machigi’s new plan, and to stir shit up. Mostly she wants to stir things up and see what falls out and falls in line. So Bren, Ilisidi, Machigi (who has never left the Marid before and this is a pretty big deal), and the new lord-of-the-ajuri-to-be and former-spy-for-Machigi, Narida, set out to one of the provinces of the Marid to make known to that lord there what is going to be happening in his territory. Which just happens to be one of the places Narida spied on during the Troubles books and books back now. Ilisidi: professional beehive poker.

I love that woman.

Resurgence is first and foremost a political book. It has built upon books and books of previous backstory and political intrigue. While some of the players may be new, the people who matter aren’t and their plans have been in motion for quite a while now. This goes exactly like every other book in the series. It is fun. It is well written. And I can’t wait to read the next book.

ARC received from DAW/Berkley Publishing Group on Netgalley. This did not affect my review.