I am trying to remember a sci-fi book series but have a very vague memory of the stories’ details. I have the sense that the series was written after 1990 but I am not sure about that.

There is a jungle planet where a group of people / families (possibly slaves) are being escorted by a kind of military or mercenaries across the planet for some purpose. Then another single person / group on the same planet somehow break away and gain some kind of occult power which transforms them, making them very powerful. They end up fighting and killing members of the main group / military personnel. Then they have a plan to carry their power / occult religion across the cosmos.

Also, I remember before being sent trekking across the planet there was a city / docking station for spaceships with a Governor and some form of government.

Concurrent story in the book there is a sexual relationship between like a princess and some spaceship captain and something about mining asteroids operation.

Not a lot to go on I am sure and possibly not accurate either but hopefully enough to go by to get the name of the book / series.

  • Aspects of this sound like Redliners by David Drake; the escort part and the governor part. Is it possible you are collating two books? Redliners was published in 1996 I believe
    – Blair
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 2:50
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    @Blair. I read the Wiki entry for The Reality Dysfunction and all the plot points I remember are in this one book. So, pretty sure I found it. Also the cover image looks correct as my dodgy memory comes back into focus. Thanks though for the attempt.
    – Benjamin
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 3:11
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    If this isn't The Chronicles of Riddick then I don't know what is.
    – Möoz
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 3:29
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    Interesting discussion here. I saw the title in the "Hot Network Questions" sidebar and immediately thought of The Reality Dysfunction before I even opened it to read the description. But then I'm a pretty huge Peter F. Hamilton fan. Glad you found it, OP! And read more of his stuff. He's great.
    – flith
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 10:14
  • See also: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/155784/… (second book in the series)
    – Otis
    Commented Aug 20, 2018 at 21:06

1 Answer 1


Did some more research online and believe I found the series; The Night's Dawn Series, #1 The Reality Dysfunction by Peter F. Hamilton. I was off on quite a few plot points but the more I read the more came back to me and am assured this is the book.

A group of colonists arrive on the frontier world of Lalonde from Earth. Grossly overpopulated, with tens, sometimes hundreds of millions of people crammed into domed cities called arcologies, many people on Earth dream of escaping to virgin worlds with open skies above their head.

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    Excellent. Can you flesh out your answer a bit? And you can accept a self-answer 48 hours after asking the question.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 3:18
  • Flesh out my answer?
    – Benjamin
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 3:54
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    :) Why does this book fit? Maybe you could link to its profile on a site like Goodreads or Amazon and quote the plot synopsis?
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 3:54
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    This is almost definitely correct. A Satanic ritual interrupted by an alien entity allowed deceased souls to begin possessing humans, along with some nifty psychic powers. The governer in question was likely Lalonde's governer, Colin Rexrew, who was depicted struggling with immigration and later the (then unknown) possession crisis. The princess and captain were Ione Saldana, estranged leader of the space habitat Tranquility, and Joshua Calvert, captain of the Lady Macbeth. This series fleshed out a lot of characters - there were multiple plot lines running at all times.
    – Xono
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 7:09
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    This was going to be my first suggestion to you.
    – Ash
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 11:42

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