In The Shadow Of Heaven

by javert

Original ONGOING Drama Psychological Sci-fi Female Lead Magic Multiple Lead Characters Strategy
Warning This fiction contains:
  • Profanity
  • Traumatising content

Yan BarCarran is on the cusp of graduating from the top theological school in the galaxy. She's expecting to slide quietly into an unremarkable apprenticeship and career that will make her uncle proud, but her quiet future vanishes when she's offered an apprenticeship with the most powerful man in the Empire. Yan has to learn politics and leadership, fast. As she organizes trade deals, learns to defend herself from assassins, and attends dangerous parties, Yan must learn who she can trust in this new world. After all, at the top, the only place left to go is down.

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ACT ONE: New Creatures with New Hearts

Yan starts her apprenticeship and does her best to get along with all of the personalities she has to work with. She begins to understand what might be required of her as a political figure, and learns exactly how far she's willing to go to survive.

Highlights include family drama, budding romance, a fake gunfight, a real pirate attack, and a military coup.

Complete act. Chapters 1-42 plus an interlude.

Table of Contents / Reference Sheet for part one can be found here. Contains spoilers.

ACT TWO: The Realms of the Unreal

An unexpected attack disrupts the precarious balance of the world. Sid and Sylva take center stage as they each fight to recover what has been lost. Yan has her long dark night of the soul. Aymon struggles to hold together an alliance that is on the brink of collapse.

Highlights include a murder mystery, political intrigue, betrayal, unexpected alliances, kidnapping, secret identities, dramatic escapes, and shocking revelations.

Act currently in progress. Chapters 43-current.

Table of Contents / Reference Sheet for this arc coming soon.

Additional Information

This story is scifi with mild fantasy elements. It is relatively slow paced in the beginning but it picks up speed as it goes. The overall story is best described as a character-focused drama with some adventure arcs. It is, especially in the second act, an ensemble style story where multiple characters have prominent story lines, though Yan remains the main character throughout. Religion is a central element to the world, but this story is not an endorsement of any particular religion (or religion in general) and definitely not an attempt to proselytize to the reader. The primary romance is F/F.



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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Chapter One ago
Chapter Two ago
Chapter Three ago
Chapter Four ago
Chapter Five ago
Chapter Six ago
Chapter Seven ago
Chapter Eight ago
Chapter Nine ago
Chapter Ten ago
Chapter Eleven ago
Chapter Twelve ago
Chapter Thirteen ago
Chapter Fourteen ago
Chapter Fifteen ago
Chapter Sixteen ago
Chapter Seventeen ago
Chapter Eighteen ago
Interlude: The Book of Secrets ago
Chapter Nineteen ago
Chapter Twenty ago
Chapter Twenty-One ago
Chapter Twenty-Two ago
Chapter Twenty-Three ago
Chapter Twenty-Four ago
Chapter Twenty-Five ago
Chapter Twenty-Six ago
Chapter Twenty-Seven ago
Chapter Twenty-Eight ago
Chapter Twenty-Nine ago
Chapter Thirty ago
Chapter Thirty-One ago
Chapter Thirty-Two ago
Chapter Thirty-Three ago
Chapter Thirty-Four ago
Chapter Thirty-Five ago
Chapter Thirty-Six ago
Chapter Thirty-Seven ago
Chapter Thirty-Eight ago
Chapter Thirty-Nine ago
Chapter Forty ago
Chapter Forty-One ago
Chapter Forty-Two ago
(Reference Chart / Table of Contents) Part One: New Creatures With New Hearts ago
Chapter Forty-Three ago
Chapter Forty-Four ago
Chapter Forty-Five ago
Chapter Forty-Six ago
Chapter Forty-Seven ago
Chapter Forty-Eight ago
Chapter Forty-Nine ago
Chapter Fifty ago
Bonus Chapter: Kino, Part One - Falmar ago
Bonus chapter: Kino, Part Two - Hanathue ago
Bonus chapter: Kino, Part Three - Emerri ago
Chapter Fifty-One ago
Chapter Fifty-Two ago
Chapter Fifty-Three ago
Chapter Fifty-Four ago
Chapter Fifty-Five ago
Chapter Fifty-Six ago

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Engaging character/story-Great mix of magic & tech

One of the best-written pieces that I have read in the past year, not just here on RR, but in all fiction by traditionally published and self-published writers. The voice is solid, consistent, and interesting. The world-building feels deep and complex, but so far no info-dumps, just well-laid bits of description and trivia and song lyrics at the start of each chapter. This is a world where religion matters, but one that is built on science and engineering and "magic" - not sure if it is only telekinesis and telepathy, or if it is "Force"-like in the manner of Star Wars, but so far it is a great mix of technology, magic, religion, politics, spacer vs. grounder culture, Imperial-capital planet vs. Rimworld-planet culture, and the switch from being a student at the end of college to entering the working world - not a coming-of-age as such, but more of a story about going from theory to practice. Also, a nice change of pace from the evil/amoral cultivation societies or apocalypse stories that I see much more frequently. A great read that I highly recommend as of Chapter 10.

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A facinating sci-fi setting, which RR has a large lack of, with a small dash of 'magic'. The theological thread doesn't come off as overbearing, but mearly an element of the setting/character(s) and I thought well used (personally, my philosophy would probably most accuratly fall under 'agnostic theism' for however that tempers your reading of my words.)

I have a small ding due to character(s) who are/become important, but have only learned superficial information/growth. This is exacerbated due to other important characters having direct PoV chapters so we have a lot of information on them directly, which skews the growth/information as far as Main Characters to be lopsided; atleast, as of the writing of this review. Caveat, there is a bit of illusion as this is a web serial rather than a book, so the separation between distinct 'books' is heavily blurred and techniques that work between books aren't as easily effective/influencing on a regularly-expanding story which the serial-posting brings.

Still, I await each chapter with bated breath- like a flower slowly blooming, each petal unfurling is more facinating than the last.

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The story is nice but, the plot progresses so slow at times. The main reason is because there is a lot of different pov's which do start to get annoying in my opinion. 

Spoiler: Spoiler

 I like most characters. Grammar is great.World building is also done pretty good. Just that the pace is too slow.

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This is a review as of Chapter 17

I have mixed feelings about this fiction. 

On one hand, it is well written, the characters are likable and unique, the story is compelling and the plot and world building is fascinating. 

On the other hand... nobody seems to care or mind that they are living in a totalitarian theocracy where all the important positions are held by an elite group of "sensitives" rather than a meritocracy, and where policy is dictated because "God told me so."

I will revise my review the further I read and if the narrator (or author) ever gets over her naivete and realizes just how poisonous this system is.

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This was the first work which really got my attention on RoyalRoad. And software at it managed to keep me reading till chapter nine. The plot is well established well in the early chapters, and Yan has her own doubts and motivations. 

As much as she is still someone with agency. Her back story was well woven into the main plot. And give a good clue as to what drives her. The world manages to expand and continue to be fascinating, while revealing the more intricate layers behind. 

It wasn't entirely to my taste, but it has managed to surprise and retain my attention. Will recommend to someone who likes science.fiction fantasy, with an eye for well thought out world building and good explanations. 

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Thanks for the blurb describing the type of book it is. I wish more authors added that information.

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Amazing character growth

This story features some of the best character character growth I have seen in a story. Characters actually react to situations and change because of them, add this to engaging world-building, interesting polotics and an awesome mix of magic and sci-fi and you have one of my favorite story's. :)