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The Pearl Saga

The Pearl Saga series is Eric Van Lustbader’s popular fantasy and science fiction series of books. It’s currently incomplete with the third, and currently final, edition coming out in 2004. The whole series focuses on the planet of Kundala. It was conquered by a race of snobbish humanoids known as the V’ornn which prize military and aristocracy above all else. In the background stands another race, though, which rules and controls the V’ornn. These are the Gyrgon, a race of androgynous technomages. Readers follow the path of the prophesised redeemer Riane.

The Quest

The three current novels focus on Riane’s quest to find a variety of items, each with its own purpose. These items are:

  • Nine Banestones.
  • The Ring of Five Dragons; a ring created from red jade and possessing the power to open the mysterious Stonehouse Door.
  • The Pearl; the item created during the forging of the Kundala world.
  • The Veil of a Thousand Tears; the specially transformed outer shell of The Pearl.


Novels

The Ring of Five Dragons – Released in 2001, this 608-page novel introduced the Ring of Five Dragons. Amnesiac girl Riane combines with the psyche of a V’ornn attempting to flee the planet of Kundala to create the redeemer, known as Dar Sala-at. However, the Kundalans under the domination of the V’ornn must face the reality of their planet crumbling around them. Only by finding the Ring of Five Dragons can the long-suffering race of Kundalans protect their planet for another day.

The Veil of a Thousand Tears – Riane’s discovery of the Ring of Five Dragons enabled the Kundalans to avert planetary disaster. Unfortunately, the spell that created the redeemer known as Dar Sala-at in the first place triggered the Abyss. The Abyss now releases daemons long hidden from the world into the universe. Goddess Miina once bound them after creating the world of Kundala, but only The Veil of a Thousand Tears can exile this rampaging horde once again.

The Cage of Nine Banestones – Although the daemons released by the Abyss prevented the destruction of the planet of Kundala, a new threat is on the horizon. Riane must stop the work of a group of reckless sorcerers who seek to bind a dragon. This group, known as the Sauromicians, if they succeed, will most certainly cause an unimaginable swathe of destruction and decimation if not stopped.

Races of the Pearl Saga

The Pearl Saga plays host to a number of races each with their own distinct culture and goals. Van Lustbader skilfully highlights their unique interactions as part of a universal melting pot.

Kundalan

The Kundalan race worships the Goddess Miina, who created their home planet of Kundala and banished a number of dangerous and powerful daemons threatening their very existence. This is the central race of the novels that consistently defends its ways against the intrusion of races like the V’ornn.

It is a matriarchal society, after transitioning away from their older patriarchal ways. They primarily spend time praising their goddess in Abbeys overseen by figures known as Ramahan. They use two kinds of sorcery known as Kyofu and Osoru to protect themselves and their way of life.

V’ornn

This race consists of incredible space farers who frantically look for a perfect new home world to settle on. These nomads use a caste system to categorise each individual in society.  Whilst they do not have a god, the lesser caste of Mesagggun formerly worshipped Enlil, a deceased War god.

The caste system is complicated and is split into both greater and lesser castes for the purposes of simplicity. The greater castes include four groups of Ashera (leaders), Gyorgan (lawmakers), Bashkir (merchants), and Genomatekks (physicians). The lesser castes also consist of four groups, and these are Khagggun (warriors), Mesagggun (engineers), Deirus (physicians including psychotherapists and morticians), and Tuskugggun (females who work as musicians, prostitutes, and artists).

Druuge

These are nomadic like the V’ornn and reside in the Great Voorg desert. Cosmic historians draw parallels between V’ornn and Druuge cosmology and mythology.

Sarakkon

The Sarakkon worship Abrasea, an androgynous being. These inhabit the Southern Continent, which is completely covered in radiation.

Centophennni

The V’ornn’s great enemy. This is currently the only race in The Pearl Saga that has stood against the V’ornn and survived. 300 years ago the V’ornn attacked and conquered their world. In retaliation, the Centophennni crushed the main V’ornn space fleet 250 years ago at the battle of Hellespennn.
 
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