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Tag Archives: The Keeper's Six

The Beyond is ever-shifting, a fluctuating space of deadly light and impassible dark, filled with dangerous creatures. An adventuring party must consist of six members in order to venture across the Beyond. One Gate (to open the way and find the paths in the shifting wilderness), one Ghost (who becomes a silent, intangible scout once in the Beyond), one Shotgun (the party’s primary combatant), one Voice (the polyglot communications specialist), one Lantern (to light the way), and one Keeper (who remains behind at the group’s Keep, maintaining a stable entry platform that bridges the Beyond and the solid reality of the Realms. These six members make a Hex. Why six? Something about the magic that the dragons use to travel through the Beyond on their own can only be replicated by a group of six. Too many more than that, and the Beyond can destabilize even further. Too few, and you can’t be protected from the various monsters that call that nightmare place home.

Esther is a Lantern, but she’s semi-retired. Her Hex was suspended from operating a year ago, leaving the rest of her closest friends out of work. One night, a mysterious phone call wakes Esther, a single word from David, her son and the Keeper of the Hex. Immediately, she springs into action to gather the other members of the Hex and rally at the Keep to gather information. David, it seems, has been kidnapped, leaving his spouse Kai and their children behind in the unguarded Keep. Someone has captured him, and Esther must journey across the Beyond to find the party responsible. While Marianne, Gus, Lydia, and Faye all answer Esther’s summons, not all of the Hex is happy to see her again, especially since their suspension means that they’re not technically supposed to be operating in the Beyond at all.

So begins a covert mission to find David and bring him safely home. After all, what wouldn’t a parent do to protect their child?

Kate Elliott has crafted a phenomenal sci-fi novella with group mechanics reminiscent of a Dungeons and Dragons party. I’m fascinated by both the Beyond and the many Realms that it links, and I’m honestly sorry that this is my first time tackling one of her stories. I hope that she revisits this world again soon.

The Keeper’s Six is out today. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

My utmost thanks to Tordotcom for providing an eARC of this novella in exchange for a fair review.