8

So here's what I remember; It takes place on another planet, thousands of years after the colonists from Earth arrived. There is a prologue where they describe how the first colonists are attacked by vampires and werewolves and other nightmare creatures; turned out the planet had a force that was bringing their nightmares to life. This force also stopped their tech from working right.

Fast forward to the main story, it's a dark ages society with a bastardized version of Christianity and there are people who can manipulate the planet force like magic. The main characters are a magic wielding sword swinging priest and an antihero character that's ancient and uses the life force of others to extend his life. He turns out to be an ancient prophet of the priests' religion. There was also a plot point where felines were the dominant form of life and if people hadn't shown up, they would've evolved into cat people.

1
  • 2
    Welcome to the site. If someone correctly identifies the book you're looking for, please upvote that answer and mark it as accepted by clicking on the check mark beneath the voting buttons. Or if the only answer/s posted are incorrect, please indicate that with a comment so we know to keep looking. Thank you. Commented Feb 28, 2021 at 2:58

1 Answer 1

10

I believe you're referring to The Coldfire Trilogy of books by Celia S. Friedman, published from 1991-1995.

enter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description here

A synopsis from Wikipedia:

The main events of the Trilogy take place on the fictional planet of Erna, colonized 1200 years before the start of the books by a group of humans from a future Earth.

Erna is a primarily hospitable environment; although a planet with severe and intense seismic activity, the planet is similar enough to Earth to allow for habitability.

It has, however, another key difference from Earth. The entire surface of Erna is wrapped in a powerful energy field known as the Fae. The Fae is a type of energy that comes up to the surface from the core of the planet via the plethora of volcanoes and earthquakes that rock the planet's surface. This is an energy that the native animals of Erna sense, and utilize to a small extent to help them survive (i.e. the Fae is often able to tell a Sensitive individual when an earthquake is coming, or if the tides are about to shift). This energy field that encompasses the planet is likened to Earth's magnetic field. Author C.S. Friedman explains how her idea of the Fae was shaped by Isaac Asimov's essay arguing that if magic existed, it would be a natural force governed by consistent rules. "Like fire, it should be useful when controlled, dangerous if uncontrolled," she says. "The fact that we build windmills does not mean we stop fearing hurricanes."1

The energy is also sensitive to the human psyche, as the colonists discovered to their dismay. The Fae reacts to human cerebral activity, bringing to life dreams and manifesting fears. In fact, many of the first colonists were killed by Fae-constructs, demons and beasts that fed off of their human progenitors, both physically and mentally. It was only by a Great Sacrifice, the loss of all the technology and knowledge the colonists had brought with them, that humanity came to terms with the Fae, at least enough to learn a rudimentary level of control over the power.

For a few hundred years, humanity has managed to eke out a scant existence on the harsh surface of Erna, keeping an uneasy balance with the Fae. Mankind grows weary of its tumultuous battle with the energy-force however, and multiple organizations try to find ways to render the human psyche unable to mold the Fae. One of these groups was the Church of Human Unification, an organization that sought to bring mankind together in prayer to accomplish two things: 1) make the Fae recognize man as a regular race on Erna, allowing them to live in harmony with the energy, and 2) allow for a human afterlife by bringing mankind to the bosom of a God that either already exists, or will be made by the power of the faith of man, and the Fae it will mold. This Church eventually brought forth a man who would be their salvation and damnation, their Prophet, one Gerald Tarrant.

The Wikipedia page also mentions:

The rakh (an indigenous species to Erna that rapidly evolved from cat-like mammals to feline humanoids thanks to the Fae and the presence of the humans)

1

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.