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Elliott, Kate

Entry updated 22 May 2023. Tagged: Author.

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Pseudonym of US author Alis A Rasmussen (1958-    ), who has written as Kate Elliott since 1992. Under her own name, her first novel, The Labyrinth Gate (1988), is a tale of considerable interest, delineating a believably matrilineal fantasy world. The Highroad Trilogy – comprising A Passage of Stars (1990), Revolution's Shore (1990) and The Price of Ransom (1990) – depicts the interstellar adventures of its young female protagonist, who sets out to search for her kidnapped mentor and to fight evil galactic bureaucrats, and whose involvement in Music is infectiously presented through her interaction with a highly musical Robot companion. Her search for a full life keeps this first volume moving, albeit through markedly familiar venues; the third volume, which carries the maturing crew back from colonized space towards the old worlds, is a marked improvement. All these titles are signed Alis A Rasmussen.

It was at this point in her career that she began to work under a pseudonym, and as Kate Elliott created a new series directly subsequent to the Highroad books. The Novels of Jaran sequence – comprising Jaran (1992), An Earthly Crown (1993), His Conquering Sword (1993) and The Law of Becoming (1994) – complicatedly joins together clans of Alien warriors (the jaran), rite-of-passage subplots featuring younger women, human actors; the action begins on an oppressed Earth, but soon moves to a Planetary Romance venue, a world called Rhui where the heroine and her kith engage in many battles with an end to conquering the planet – all while, back on Earth, something like a Cyberpunk culture is evolving. Elliott's later work has been fantasy, some of it ambitious. Much of Elliott's later work has been fantasy, some of it ambitious, though the Sun Chronicles sequence beginning with Unconquerable Sun (2020), set in a moderately Far Future slough of Galactic Empires shaken by dynastic disputes; local colour is supplied by Military SF sequences. [JC]

Alis A Rasmussen

born Des Moines, Iowa: 27 July 1958

works as Alis A Rasmussen


Highroad Trilogy

individual titles

works as Kate Elliott


Novels of Jaran

Crown of Stars

Spirit Gate


Black Wolves

Court of Fives

  • Court of Fives (Boston, Massachusetts: Little, Brown, 2015) [Court of Fives: hb/Wes Houssi]
  • Poisoned Blade (Boston, Massachusetts: Little, Brown, 2016) [Court of Fives: hb/Wes Houssi & Samny Yuen]
  • Buried Heart (Boston, Massachusetts: Little, Brown, 2017) [Court of Fives: hb/Samny Yuen]

The Sun Chronicles

individual titles

collections and stories


previous versions of this entry

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