The Soldier is the first novel in the Rise of the Jain series, by bestselling science fiction author Neal Asher.
Her mission is vital. Her failure is unthinkable.
A corner of space swarms with alien technology, a danger to all sentient life. It’s guarded by Orlandine, who must keep it contained – as it could destroy entire civilizations. An alien intelligence shares her vigil. But she doesn’t share everything with Dragon . . .
Orlandine is hatching a plan to obliterate this technology, removing its threat forever. For some will do anything to exploit this ancient weaponry, created by a long-dead race called the Jain. This includes activating a Jain super-soldier, which may breach even Orlandine’s defences.
Meanwhile, humanity and the alien prador empire also watch this sector of space, as neither can allow the other to claim its power. However, things are about to change. The Jain might not be as dead as they seemed and interstellar war is just a heartbeat away.
Neal Asher's books are like an adrenaline shot targeted directly for the brain (John Scalzi)
The Soldier provides everything we demand from Asher: a beautifully complex universe where AIs, aliens and post-humans scheme and struggle – magnificently awesome. Then Asher turns it up to eleven (Peter F. Hamilton)
A richly imagined, exotic world, nonstop action, and unimaginable stakes - I couldn't put The Soldier down (Yoon Ha Lee, author of Ninefox Gambit)
Neal Asher's coruscating mix of epic space opera, weaponised Darwinism and high-stakes intrigue channels the primal flame of deep-core science fiction (Paul McAuley, author of Four Hundred Billion Stars)
Asher is a modern master of Sci-Fi (Starburst)
This is space opera at a high peak of craftsmanship (Publishers Weekly)