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Nightflyers
Cover of Nightflyers
Nightflyers
The Illustrated Edition
Borrow Borrow Borrow
A gorgeous illustrated edition of a classic novella from the #1 bestselling author of A Game of Thrones—a chilling mystery set on a seemingly haunted spaceship, soon to be an original series on SYFY.

Featuring fifteen original illustrations, this is the definitive edition of an electrifying tale that combines the deep-space thrills of Alien, the psychological horror of The Shining, and, of course, the inimitable vision of George R. R. Martin.

When a scientific expedition is launched to study a mysterious alien race, the only ship available is the Nightflyer, a fully autonomous vessel manned by a single human. But Captain Royd Eris remains locked away, interacting with his passengers only as a disembodied voice—or a projected hologram no more substantial than a ghost.

Yet that's not the only reason the ship seems haunted. The team's telepath, Thale Lasamer, senses another presence aboard the Nightflyer—something dangerous, volatile, and alien. Captain Eris claims to know nothing about the elusive intruder, and when someone, or something, begins killing off the expedition's members, he's unable—or unwilling—to stem the bloody tide.

Only Melantha Jhirl, a genetically enhanced outcast with greater strength, stamina, and intelligence than other humans, has a chance of solving the mystery—and stopping the malevolent being that's wiping out her shipmates.

But first she has to keep herself alive.
A gorgeous illustrated edition of a classic novella from the #1 bestselling author of A Game of Thrones—a chilling mystery set on a seemingly haunted spaceship, soon to be an original series on SYFY.

Featuring fifteen original illustrations, this is the definitive edition of an electrifying tale that combines the deep-space thrills of Alien, the psychological horror of The Shining, and, of course, the inimitable vision of George R. R. Martin.

When a scientific expedition is launched to study a mysterious alien race, the only ship available is the Nightflyer, a fully autonomous vessel manned by a single human. But Captain Royd Eris remains locked away, interacting with his passengers only as a disembodied voice—or a projected hologram no more substantial than a ghost.

Yet that's not the only reason the ship seems haunted. The team's telepath, Thale Lasamer, senses another presence aboard the Nightflyer—something dangerous, volatile, and alien. Captain Eris claims to know nothing about the elusive intruder, and when someone, or something, begins killing off the expedition's members, he's unable—or unwilling—to stem the bloody tide.

Only Melantha Jhirl, a genetically enhanced outcast with greater strength, stamina, and intelligence than other humans, has a chance of solving the mystery—and stopping the malevolent being that's wiping out her shipmates.

But first she has to keep herself alive.
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Excerpts-
  • From the book Chapter 1

    When Jesus of Nazareth hung dying on his cross, the volcryn passed within a year of his agony, headed outward.

    When the Fire Wars raged on Earth, the volcryn sailed near Old Poseidon, where the seas were still unnamed and unfished. By the time the stardrive had transformed the Federated Nations of Earth into the Federal Empire, the volcryn had moved into the fringes of Hrangan space. The Hrangans never knew it. Like us they were children of the small bright worlds that circled their scattered suns, with little interest and less knowledge of the things that moved in the gulfs between.

    War flamed for a thousand years and the volcryn passed through it, unknowing and untouched, safe in a place where no fires could ever burn. Afterwards, the Federal Empire was shattered and gone, and the Hrangans vanished in the dark of the Collapse, but it was no darker for the volcryn.

    When Kleronomas took his survey ship out from Avalon, the volcryn came within ten light-years of him. Kleronomas found many things, but he did not find the volcryn. Not then and not on his return to Avalon, a lifetime later.

    When I was a child of three, Kleronomas was dust, as distant and dead as Jesus of Nazareth, and the volcryn passed close to Daronne. That season all the Crey sensitives grew strange and sat staring at the stars with luminous, flickering eyes.

    When I was grown, the volcryn had sailed beyond Tara, past the range of even the Crey, still heading outward.

    And now I am old and growing older and the volcryn will soon pierce the Tempter's Veil where it hangs like a black mist between the stars. And we follow, we follow. Through the dark gulfs where no one goes, through the emptiness, through the silence that goes on and on, my Nightflyer and I give chase.

    They made their way slowly down the length of the transparent tube that linked the orbital docks to the waiting starship ahead, pulling themselves hand over hand through weightlessness.

    Melantha Jhirl, the only one among them who did not seem clumsy and ill at ease in free fall, paused briefly to look at the dappled globe of Avalon below, a stately vastness in jade and amber. She smiled and moved swiftly down the tube, passing her companions with an easy grace. They had boarded starships before, all of them, but never like this. Most ships docked flush against the station, but the craft that Karoly d'Branin had chartered for his mission was too large, and too singular in design. It loomed ahead; three small eggs side by side, two larger spheres beneath and at right angles, the cylinder of the driveroom between, lengths of tube connecting it all. The ship was white and austere.

    Melantha Jhirl was the first one through the airlock. The others straggled up one by one until they had all boarded; five women and four men, each an Academy scholar, their backgrounds as diverse as their fields of study. The frail young telepath, Thale Lasamer, was the last to enter. He glanced about nervously as the others chatted and waited for the entry procedure to be completed. "We're being watched," he said.

    The outer door was closed behind them, the tube had fallen away; now the inner door slid open. "Welcome to my Nightflyer," said a mellow voice from within.

    But there was no one there.

    Melantha Jhirl stepped into the corridor. "Hello," she said, looking about quizzically. Karoly d'Branin followed her.

    "Hello," the mellow voice replied. It was coming from a communicator grille beneath a darkened view­screen. "This is Royd Eris, master of the Nightflyer. I'm pleased to see you again, Karoly, and pleased to welcome the rest of you."

    "Where are you?"...
About the Author-
  • George R. R. Martin is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of many novels, including those of the acclaimed series A Song of Ice and Fire—A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, and A Dance with Dragons—as well as Tuf Voyaging, Fevre Dream, The Armageddon Rag, Dying of the Light, Windhaven (with Lisa Tuttle), and Dreamsongs Volumes I and II. He is also the creator of The Lands of Ice and Fire, a collection of maps featuring original artwork from illustrator and cartographer Jonathan Roberts, and The World of Ice & Fire, with Elio M. García, Jr., and Linda Antonsson. As a writer-producer, he has worked on The Twilight Zone, Beauty and the Beast, and various feature films and pilots that were never made. He lives with the lovely Parris in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

    David Palumbo is a Philadelphia-based painter known primarily for fantasy and horror genre illustration. A graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Palumbo began his career showing in galleries in 2003, but his primary focus has long been centered on illustration. His images have won numerous honors and been featured in exhibits from New York to Paris.
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    Random House Publishing Group
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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Nightflyers
The Illustrated Edition
George R. R. Martin
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