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I’ve been searching for this book for a while, to no avail. I read it as a teen somewhere between 2005 and 2013, in the UK. From what I can remember, it was a Star Wars style “ragtag gang of rogues/rebels fighting the imperial system”. I seem to remember there was a focus on the use of clones as well. Some other details:

  • Most planets in the solar system were colonised
  • There was an abandoned monastery on the Moon
  • The imperial government was called something like “the system”
  • One of the antagonists was called “mama Mercury" or "mother mercy", or something similar
  • The ending had a twist involving the main character’s clone as a prisoner, unfortunately I can’t remember it properly!
  • "the system" (imperial government) had more than 26 letters in their official alphabet
  • at one point, one of the characters enters into some sort of space gladiator contest and fairly savagely murders someone to win

The only slightly similar novel I have found was 2312, but despite the similarities I don't think that was it.

Any clues or ideas of the book name would be much appreciated; I’ve honestly no idea what the title was, despite googling all of the above loads!

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  • goodreads.com/book/show/26127606-creation-machine + goodreads.com/book/show/54303716-rich-man-s-sky - Monasteries on the moon are a pretty common trope
    – Valorum
    Feb 26 at 23:02
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    Hi, welcome to SF&F. Do you recall any details of the cover (colour, images)? Any idea when it was set, or bits of the technology that stuck in your memory?
    – DavidW
    Feb 26 at 23:28
  • Sadly nothing of any great detail. I do remember they used some sort of "fast travel" and one scene mentioned how they moved away from solar as it wasn't taxable. I do also remember some sort of imperial guard militia type role, but can't remember specific details.
    – tomandco
    Feb 26 at 23:33
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    What does "pin abandoned" mean?
    – FuzzyBoots
    Feb 27 at 0:35
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    "Most planets in the solar system were colonised" -- should I take this to mean that most or all of the plot took place within our own solar system? As in, the human race had not yet developed any FTL travel which would allow people to visit other solar systems after a very fast trip? If so, that would eliminate a few things which had popped into my head as I first read your description of the loose parallels with Star Wars.
    – Lorendiac
    Feb 27 at 3:30

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