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I'm trying to find the name of a book series (maybe a trilogy) with this story line. I feel like the title is something to do with distant star or remote sun, but I can't find it.

Humans were almost wiped out by a disease and have retreated to a planet and lost track of earth, they may even have lost the belief that there was an Earth. They meet two alien races, one of which they call crabs. At least one crab blows itself up on board a human ship. The crabs don't have names until they distinguish themselves in battle. One does that, challenges for leadership and befriends the humans.

The humans find an ancient ship that is able to make other ships. Another race made it and want it back. They usually rent it out to other races with a technology lock on it so it can't be used to create more manufacturing ships.

There's some switching back and forth about which race is better to be aligned with and whether one of these races was the architect of the plague.

There is another ancient ship in here too. The Crabs have been guarding it for the humans.

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  • John Ringo has an alien race called (by humans) The Crabs in his Aldenata books. However I don't remember any of the books with a storyline like the one you describe. – John Rennie Jun 28 '20 at 14:44
  • Is it possibly the Silver Ships series by S.H. Jucha? There's a crab like species called the Swei Swee who the humans meet in the third book, Méridien. – Omnificer Jun 28 '20 at 17:55
  • Thanks @JohnRennie and Omnificer, but it's neither of those – Craig Jun 28 '20 at 21:16
  • The crabs you mention put me in mind of the Qheuen from David Brin's second uplift series, although nothing else would be a match from those books... – skyjack Jun 29 '20 at 3:24
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The series is called A Faded Star by Micheal Freeport

https://www.goodreads.com/series/207501-a-faded-star

Update to describe the book more to help with people searching for these details

The species involved:

  • Humans
  • Woduur - super advanced the have ships that build ships and rent them out
  • The Alliance (five species)

Some important characters:

  • Admiral Stokes
  • Simmons
  • Patho

Major ships:

  • Rampart
  • Behemoth - carries 5 million humans
  • Damocles
  • Gorgon - Human stealth ship

Locations:

  • Lashmere - the home planet of the remaining humans
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