Dark Expanse© Recommended Reading List


The developers are avid Science Fiction fans that have a passion for reading as much as we enjoy playing Dark Expanse©. We would like to recommend the following book series which we feel captures the essence, strategy and excitement of Dark Expanse©. We hope you will find these books as intriguing, inspiring and special as we have.

Should you wish to provide additional support to Dark Expanse©, please click on one of the following books to be linked through to Amazon.com. Any purchases you make will not only give you hours of enjoyment, but also help us as well.

Dark Expanse Stories

is proud to announce that we have have been working with select authors to extend the Dark Expanse mythos. Some stories are referenced below while others can be discovered within the game. We hope you enjoy these works as much as we do.

Klyve Ganthe is a Kyoti, a race of liars, tricksters and con artists. As the Corona Corporation abandons the planet Nimbas, suddenly Kyle finds himself in charge. Armed with his wits, a telepathic advisor, and a nagging mother-in-law, Klyve must struggle to bring together the disgruntled factions and keep Nimbas from being overrun by the Logorasch swarm.

A planet on the edge of chaos. Can Kyle make Nimbas As Good as Bad Can Get?

For additional exciting stories in the Dark Expanse universe, purchase "Surviving the Collapse" exclusively on Amazon. Within this volume, you'll find eighteen short stories that flesh out this universe. From humorous to bone-chilling, from the time of the Collapse itself to the game's 'present, several hundred years later, these tales explore different aspects and periods of the Dark Expanse storyline, You'll meet heroes and villains, space pirates and black ops operatives, mad telepaths and crusading zealots.

Dark Expanse: Surviving the Collapse is good, old-fashioned space adventure fun, explored by some of the most talented modern science fiction writers, such as Hugo and Nebula Award winner Ken Liu, Philip K. Dick Award winner David Walton, Hugo and Nebula nominee Nancy Fulda, and a slew of others whose names regularly grace prestigious science fiction magazines.

Board your stealth ship, and let us take you on the sightseeing tour of the Collapse!

The Lost Fleet and The Lost Stars Series by Jack Campbell (John G. Hemry)

The Lost Fleet:Dauntless –– The Alliance has been fighting the Syndics for a century – and losing badly. Now its fleet is crippled and stranded in enemy territory. Their only hope is a man who's emerged from a century–long hibernation to find he had been heroically idealized beyond belief. Captain John "Black Jack" Geary's legendary exploits are known to every schoolchild. Revered for his heroic "last stand" in the early days of the war, he was presumed dead. But a century later, Geary miraculously returns from survival hibernation and reluctantly takes command of the Alliance fleet as it faces annihilation by the Syndics. Appalled by the hero-worship around him, Geary is nevertheless a man who will do his duty. And he knows that bringing the stolen Syndic hypernet key safely home is the Alliance's one chance to win the war. But to do that, Geary will have to live up to the impossibly heroic "Black Jack" legend. –– Jack Campbell

The Lost Stars: Tarnished Knight –– The authority of the Syndicate Worlds government is crumbling. Civil war and rebellion are breaking out in many star systems despite the Syndic government's brutal attempts to suppress disorder. Midway is one of those star systems, and leaders there must decide whether to remain loyal to the old order or fight for something new.

CEO Artur Drakon has been betrayed. The Syndic government failed to protect its citizens from both the Alliance and the alien enigmas. With a cadre of loyal soldiers under his command, Drakon launches a battle for control of the Midway Star System assisted by an ally he's unsure he can trust.

CEO Gwen Iceni was exiled to Midway because she wasn't ruthless enough in the eyes of her superiors. She's made them regret their assessment by commandeering some of the warships at Midway and attacking the remaining ships still loyal to the Syndicate empire. Iceni declares independence for the Midway Star System on behalf of the people while staying in charge as "President." But while she controls the mobile fleet, she has no choice but to rely on "General" Drakon's ground forces to keep the peace planet-side.

If their coup is to succeed, Drakon and Iceni must put their differences aside to prevent the population of Midway from rising up in rebellion against them, to defend Midway against the alien threat of the enigma race and to ferret out saboteurs determined to reestablish Syndic rule. –– Jack Campbell

The Honorverse Series by David Weber

On Basalisk Station –– Having made him look a fool, she's been exiled to Basilisk Station in disgrace and set up for ruin by a superior who hates her. Her demoralized crew blames her for their ship's humiliating posting to an out-of-the-way picket station. The aborigines of the system's only habitable planet are smoking homicide–inducing hallucinogens. Parliament isn't sure it wants to keep the place; the major local industry is smuggling; the merchant cartels want her head; the star-conquering, so-called "Republic" of Haven is Up To Something; and Honor Harrington has a single, over-age light cruiser with an armament that doesn't work to police the entire star system. But the people out to get her have made one mistake. They've made her mad. –– David Weber

A Call to Duty –– Growing up, Travis Uriah Long yearned for order in his life, the one thing his neglectful mother couldn't provide. So when Travis enlisted in the Royal Manticoran Navy, he thought he'd finally found the structure he'd always wanted so desperately.

But life in the RMN isn't exactly what he'd expected. Boot camp is rough and frustrating, his first ship assignment lax and disorderly: and with the Star Kingdom of Manticore still reovering from a devastating plague, the Navy is possibly on the verge of extinction.

The Star Kingdom is a minor nation among the worlds of the Diaspora, its closests neighbors weeks or months away, with little in the way of resources. With only modest interstellar trade, no foreign contacts to speak of, a plague-ravaged economy to rebuild, and no enemies looming at the hyper limit, there are factions in Parliment who want nothing more than to scrap the Navy and shift its resources and manpower elsewhere.

But those factions are mistaken. The Universe is not a safe place.

Manticore is about to find that out. And then Travis Uriah Long will find his calling. –– David Weber and Timothy Zahn

The Galactic Marine Saga by Ian Douglas (William H. Keith)

Semper Mars –– Scientists have discovered something astonishing in the subterranean ruins of a sprawling Martian city: startling evidence of an alternative history that threatens to split humanity into opposing factions and plunge the Earth into chaos and war. The USMC – branch of a military considered, until just recently, to be obsolete – has dispatched teh Marine Mars Expeditionary Force, a thirty-man weapons platoon, to the Red Planet to protect American civilians and interests with lethal force if necessary. –– Ian Douglas

The Clone Republic Series by Steven L. Kent

The Clone Republic –– Earth, 2508 A.D. Humans have spread across the six arms of the Milky Way Galaxy. The United Authority controls Earth's colonies with an iron fist and a powerful military – a military made up almost entirely of clones...

Private First-class Wayson Harris was raised in a U.A. orphanage among thousands of clones born and bred to be the ultimate soldiers. But Harris isn't like the other Marines: He has a mind of his own. He figures he's paying for that independent streak when his first assignment out of boot camp is the smallest Marine outpost in the whole U.A.

When a rogue general surfaces, the remove desert world Harris thought was a dead-end posting becomes anything but. Fighting off the general's raid gains Harris a promotion. But it also brings him to the attention of some unfriendly U.A. leaders. They have their own plans for the military –– plans Harris disrupts by his very existence. For in an army of clones, the one unforgiveable sin is to be different... –– Steven L. Kent

The Dragon Never Sleeps and The Starfishers Series by Glen Cook (Greg Stevens)

The Dragon Never Sleeps –– For four thousand years, the Guardships have ruled Canon Space - immortal ships with an immortal crew, dealing swiftly and harshly with any mercantile houses or alien races that threaten the status quo. But now the House Tregesser has an edge: a force from outside Canon Space offers them the resources to throw off Guardship rule. This precipitates an avalanche of unexpected outcomes, including the emergence of Kez Maefele, one of the few remaining generals of the Ku Warrior race-the only race to ever seriously threaten Guardship hegemony. Kez Maefele and a motley group of aliens, biological constructs, an scheming aristocrats find themselves at the center of the conflict. Maefele must chose which side he will support: the Guardships, who defeated and destroyed his race, or the unknown forces outside Canon Space that promise more death and destruction. –– Glen Cook

Shadowline –– The Vendetta In Space... had started centuries before "Mouse" Storm was born... with his grandfather's raid on the planet Prefactias, the blood bath that freed the human slaves from their Sangaree masters. But one Sangaree survived-the young Norbon heir, the man who swore vengenace on the Storm family and their soldiers, in a carefully mapped plot that would take generations to fulfill. Now Mouse's father Gneaus must fight for an El Dorado of wealth on the burning half of the planet Blackworld. As the great private armies of all space clash on the narrow Shadowline that divides inferno from life-sheltering shade, Gneaus' half-brother Michael plays his traitorous games, and a man called Deeth pulls the deadly strings that threaten to entrap them all. –– Glen Cook

The Confederation (Valor) Series by Tanya Huff

Valor's Choice –– Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr was a battle-hardended professional. So when she and those in her platoon who'd survived the last deadly encounter with the Others were yanked from a well-deserved leave for what was supposed to be "easy" duty as the honor guard for a diplomatic mission to the non-Conderation world of the Silsviss, she was ready for anything.

At first it seemed that all she'd have to contend with was bored troops getting into mischief, and breaking in the new Second Lieutenant who had been given command of her men.

Sure, there'd been rumors of the Others––the sworn enemies of the Confederation––being spotted in this secor of space. But there were always rumors. The key thing was to recruit the Silviss into the Confederation before the Others either attacked or claimed this lizardlike race of warriors for their own side. And everything seemed to good to be going perfectly. Maybe too perfectly... –– Tanya Huff

Dune by Frank Herbert

Dune –– A planet of harsh deserts, subtly shifting sand tides and overwhelming storms ripping across the bleak landscape.

Dune –– A forbidding world where water was more precious than the rarest jewel, and men went in fear of the awesome shai-hulud, huge sandworms that dwarfed even interstellar spaceships.

Dune –– The nexus of a galactic plot encompassing more worlds and more lives than even the treacherous star-noblemen who had spawned it could guess and where ultimately would arise the Lisan al-Galib, the savior foretold in the prophecies of a tormented, angry people ripe for bloddy revolt. –– Frank Herbert

The Vatta's War and Serrano Legacy Series by Elizabeth Moon

Trading in Danger –– Kylara Vatta is the only daughter in a family full of sons, a young woman who has chosen a military career instead of joining the family's shippinig business. It's adventure, not commerce, that stirs her soul. But after a single error in judgment, she is expelled from the Academy in disgrace. The chance to captain a Vatta Transport ship gives her a face-saving shot at redemption.

It's a simple assignment: escort one of the Vatta fleet's oldest ships on its final voyage to the scrapyard. But keeping it simple has never been Ky's style. And even though her father has provided a crew of seasoned veterans to babysit the fledgling captain, they can't stop Ky from turning the routine mission into a risky venture. Business soon takes a backseat to bravery, when Ky's change of plans sails her and the crew straight into the middle of a colonial war. For all her commercial savvy, it's her military training and born-soldier's instincts that Ky will need to call on in the face of deadly combat, dangerous mercenaries, and violent mutiny... –– Elizabeth Moon

Hunting Party –– Heris Serrano was an officer born of a long line of officers. Being forced by a treacherous superior to resign her commission under a cloud was not just the end of a career path. It was the end of everything that gave her life meaning. Still, even ex-captains grieving for lost careers must eat, and Heris wound up as "Captian" of an interstellar luxury yacht. Being a rich old lady's hyperlight chauffeur isn't quite the same as captaining a dreadnought, but nothing Heris will ever do again will compare to that.

Or so she thinks....For all is not as it seems aboard the good ship Sweet Delight, and soon Heris finds herself fighting for her life against as varied and villainous a bunch of cutthroats, smugglers, and "sportsmen" as ever had the misfortune to cross her path when she was captain of the fleet. –– Elizabeth Moon

Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein

The historians can't seem to settle whether to call this one "The Third Space War" (or the fourth), or whether "The First Interstellar War" fits it better. We just call it "The Bug War." Everything up to then and still later were "incidents," "patrols," or "police actions." However, you are just as dead if you buy the farm in an "incident" as you are if you buy it in a declared war... –– Robert A. HeinLein

The Expanse Series by James S.A. Corey (Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck)

Leviathan Wakes –– Humanity has colonized the solar system Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer, Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe. –– James S. A. Corey

Ender Series by Orson Scott Card

Enders Game –– In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race's next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew "Ender" Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn't make the cut––young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.

Ender's skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers, Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.

Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender's two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If the world survives, that is. –– Orson Scott Card

Alliance-Union: Chanur Series by C. J. Cherryh

Pride of Chanur –– No one at Meetpoint Station had ever seen a creature like the Outsider. Naked–hided, blunt toothed and blunt–fingered, Tully was the sole surviving member of his company –– a communicative, spacefaring species hitherto unknown –– and he was a prisoner of his discoverer / captors the sadistic, treacherous kif, until his escape onto the hani ship The Pride of Chanur.

Little did he know when he threw himself upon the mercy of The Pride and her crew that he put the entire hani species in jeopardy and imperiled the peace of the Compact itself. For the information this fugitive held could be the ruin or glory of any of the species at Meetpoint Station. –– C. J. Cherryh

Kris Longknife Series by Mike Shepherd

Kris Longknife:Mutineer –– Kris Longknife is a daughter of privilege, born to money and power. Her father is the Prime Minister of her home planet, her mother the consumate politician's wife. She's been raised only to be beautiful and marry well. But the heritage of the military Longknifes courses through Kris's blood––and against her parents' objections, she enlists in the marines.

She has a lot to live up to and a lot to prove in the long-running struggle between her powerful family, a highly defensive––and offensive––Earth, and the hundreds of warring colonies. Then an ill–conceived attack brings the war close to home, putting Kris's life on the line. Now she has only one choice: certain death on the front lines of rim space––or mutiny. –– Mike Shepherd

Vicky Peterwald:Target–– Her imperial grace the grand duchess Victoria Maria Teresa Inez Smythe–Peterwald, daughter of wealth and power, was raised to do little except be attractive and marry well. Then everything changed: Her brother—her father's favorite and the heir apparent—was killed in battle by Lieutenant Kris Longknife, daughter of the Peterwalds' longtime enemies. Vicky vowed revenge, but her skill set was more suitable to seduction than assassination, and she failed. Angry and disappointed, her father decided she needed military training and forced her to join the Navy.

Now Ensign Vicky Peterwald is part of a whole new world, where use of here ample charms will not lead to advancement. But her father is the Emporer, and what he wants he gets. What he wants is for Vicky to learn to be efficiently ruthless and deadly.

Though the lessons are hard learned, Vicky masters them with help from an unexpected source: Kris Longknife. –– Mike Shepherd

Legion of the Damned Series by William C. Dietz

Legion of the Damned –– When all hope is lost - for the terminally ill, for the condemned criminal, for the victim who cannot be saved - there comes one final choice.

You can choose life - as a cyborg soldier in the legion.

Both more and less than human, these steel warriors with determined human minds are the most elite fighting force in the Empire.

They are fearsome - and expendable. They are the Legion of the Damned...God help them. –– William C. Dietz

Poor Man's Fight by Elliot Kay

This test completes your compulsory education. Congratulations! You have graduated high school. Your financial obligation is 67,879 credits. Please visit our loan officer as you exit.

Tanner Malone never bought into military myths of honor and glory. He never wanted to wear a uniform or medals. Yet when family upheaval brings his otherwise stellar performance in school to a disastrous end, Tanner's plans for university lie in ruins. Facing homelessness and a mountain of debt, Tanner enlists in his home planet's tiny navy.

It's a hell of a time to sign up. Vicious pirates stalk the space lanes, claiming to fight an oppressive economic system even as they shed innocent blood. Civil war looms beyond the borders of Tanner's home star system of Archangel. Corporate security fleets are nowhere to be found when trouble arises.

In response, Archangel begins ambitious military expansion. Basic training becomes six months of daily bare knuckle brawls, demanding cross-training and constant stress. Brutal as it is, Tanner will need the preparation. The pirates grow more audacious with every attack. As if that's not enough, Tanner is assigned to a small ship whose disgruntled crew has no patience for cerebral new recruits, and they're on the front lines of all of Archangel's woes.

Tanner soon learns there is only one way to deal with his bullying comrades, their ruthless foes and the unforgiving void of space, and that's to get up close and personal.

The Shadow Ops Series by Myke Cole

Control Point –– Army Officer. Fugitive. Sorcerer. Across the country and in every nation, people are waking up with magical talents. Untrained and panicked, they summon storms, raise the dead, and set everything they touch ablaze. Army officer Oscar Britton sees the worst of it. A lieutenant attached to the military's Supernatural Operations Corps, his mission is to bring order to a world gone mad. Then he abruptly manifests a rare and prohibited magical power, transforming him overnight from government agent to public enemy number one. The SOC knows how to handle this kind of situation: hunt him down and take him out. Driven into an underground shadow world, Britton is about to learn that magic has changed all the rules he's ever known, and that his life isn't the only thing he's fighting for. –– Myke Cole

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