Watching HMS Eclipse through the geosynch spaceport window, Officer James Dunne, a newly minted graduate of the Royal Interstellar Service Academy, thinks his first assignment will be routine . . . an easy going excursion on an aging deep-space cruiser, heading into the Dark, on a mission to explore the farthest reaches of known space.
James had always wanted to be a part of the romantic final frontier. Now, he thought, his lifelong dream was about to come true.
In fact, he was about to begin the greatest challenge, and worst nightmare, of his already-too-short service career!
Although repeatedly warned “not to rock the boat”, it soon becomes obvious that it is too late for the young Officer!
He is drafted into the First Contact Team where he realizes two things: (1) that his contribution to the Interstellar Space Service might easily turn out to be that of a ‘replaceable warm body’ and (2) that disrespecting junior officers, like Dunne himself, often suffer ‘unfortunate’ and sometimes fatal ‘accidents’ out in the Dark.
Dunne’s survival will depend on his ability to separate power from perversion while enduring the corruption and control of others!
Eclipse is a taut psychological thriller set in the claustrophobic confines of a starship where nothing is as terrifyingly alien as humanity itself.
K. A. Bedford
K. A. Bedford was born in Fremantle, and attended both Curtin and Murdoch University in Perth where he studied writing, theatre, and philosophy prior to his becoming actively involved in the Australian SF community. ECLIPSE is his second novel (soon to be followed by Hydrogen Steel). He lives with his wife, Michelle, near Perth, Western Australia. [MORE]
K. A. Bedford Wins Australia's Top SF Award!
K. A. Bedford receiving the news that ECLIPSE won the Aurealis award for the top Australian SF Book (2005) of the Year.
The judges said (in part):
“ECLIPSE comes across as a standard ‘starfleet space adventure’ until the ... extraordinarily well-drawn and far from stereotypical characters take over."
"Eclipse is an intelligent novel that will leave readers with much to think about." - Victoria Strauss, SF Site
"Eclipse works in all the ways that matter. It kept me turning pages way past bedtime. It has an edge of barely contained terror throughout; it has love, (sort of); it has mysterious, very alien aliens. It has a big picture that gets bigger as the story ends. It left me eager for more. Eclipse convinced me that K.A. Bedford is an author to keep an eye on." - Terry Baker, The Eternal Night
"Eclipse... was a good read - very intense in parts, violent in others - and had me staying way too late in the evening when I had to get up early for work the next morning… I couldn't just put it down to finish tomorrow." - Lisa Ramaglia, scribesworld.com
"The mastery of the projected technologies is dazzling, far more so than in most military space opera, and it is not there simply for display. These technologies have consequences. The vocabulary associated with them is credible and vital. Setting and complication are real strengths for this writer, and the pacing and action keep the reader fully occupied." - Dave Luckett, reviewer - The West Australian
"Finally, probably the best of the three is Australian author Bedford’s Eclipse, a dark, brutal sci-fi tale that alternately recalls Platoon, Lord of the Flies and the aforementioned Dick. The novel follows the exploits of James Dunne, newly graduated from the brutal Royal Interstellar Service Academy, whose first flight into space turns out to be a violent nightmare. Dunne’s battles with corruption read like a space-age memoir, offering enough vulgarity and blood-spray to satisfy more than just sci-fi fans." - Bryn Evans, Fast Forward News
"This appeal of this novel, similar to Orbital Burn, is mainly in the characters. The world is similar to ours in some ways, significantly different in others, but the characters are completely believable. Dunne is sympathetic and idealistic without being too much of a goody-two-shoes. He doesn't fall into the trap of some protagonists, travelling unscathed through horrific experiences, but instead he realistically loses some of his idealism in the process." - Liz Grzyb, TiconderogaOnline
"Eclipse was slow to start, but ... Bedford has a fascinating way with building stories; his pacing is different, and that's good. By the time you realise you're hooked on the story, you're having to tell your family to go ahead without you; you just have one more paragraph/chapter to go." - Jill Hayes, Bookchick
"This is a relentless story, pounding the reader into sensory shock as we witness the never ending plight of our poor protagonist. But, author Bedford deserves maximum kudos for not stopping there. He also imbues Officer Dunne, with a realistically sympathetic personality and history, that when confronted by the afore-hinted at atrocities, reacts in ways that the reader can't help but empathise with. Throw in a some unrealized love aspirations...that are beautifully underplayed, and ECLIPSE, becomes one of the best SF stories I have read in a long while." - Ralph Briggs, Yet Another Book Review Site
"Just finished "Eclipse" ... and the ending "Blew Me Away!" I enjoy science fiction but would not call myself a true-blue sci-fi buff. However, with stories like this that could change. Surprisingly, once I began the book found it difficult to put down. All the elements of a extremely good novel .... romance, intrigue, betrayal, revenge, and shock! Definitely thought provoking. My compliments to the chef (KA Bedford) and to the publishers." - Ken Kanton
"Reading Eclipse was my great pleasure! It truly is one of those books that is hard to put down, it's been a long time since I've devoured a book like this. Seat belts should come standard with every copy." - Charlie Stuart
Other Books by K. A. Bedford:
MEDIA KIT [PDF]