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HMS Revenant is an unpublished series of Young Adult Science Fiction novels, perhaps best described as Percy Jackson and the Olympians meets Honor Harrington.

Following the construction of a jump gate into the recently-acquired Valhalla Sector, Emperor Douglas II of the Terran Empire decides to hold the annual Christmas Parade there, to help assure the Valhallans that he considers them part of the Empire. His nephew, Captain-Duke Leopold Kelly, decides to bring his daughter Megan and many of her classmates from the prestigious Prince Robert Academy along as part of a school trip. They travel aboard Duke Kelly’s ship, the advanced cruiser HMS Revenant.


But what should have been a pleasant trip becomes a nightmare, as the Parade becomes the first battleground in a rebellion. Several of Revenant's crew are in on the plot, and when the dust settles, Megan and her classmates are the only ones left.

With the jump gate destroyed, and the Valhalla Sector in rebel hands, Megan and her classmates have no choice but to take control of the ship and become its new crew... if they want to have any chance of ever seeing home again.

The series is planned to contain four novels:

  • Revenant's Flight
  • The Long Way Home
  • The Drontheim Uprising
  • Children of the Empire

  • Adults Are Useless: Subverted. They're not useless... they're the enemy.
    • Later books simply avert this, with friendly, useful adults showing up.
  • A Child Will Lead Them: Barely averted - Empress Shannon, who assumes the throne after the partial massacre of the Royal Family, is 20 when she is crowned.
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  • Ascended Fanboy: Eitan Mears, a strategy gamer and military history buff who finds himself aboard a warship. He thinks he should be in command. He's wrong, and eventually accepts his role at tactical. Also something of an Author Avatar.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: The announcement that the Admiralty has decided to confirm everyone's ranks, making them official members of the Terran Imperial Navy. Followed by the mass awards ceremony.
  • Badass Bookworm: Eitan and most of the tactical department.
  • Break the Haughty: Christine Tang. Starts out as the Alpha Bitch, then she loses her boyfriend and suffers an injury that ruins her basketball career. She takes her anger out on the Hegemony, becoming the Assistant Tactical Officer.
  • Children Forced to Kill: Though, as Hilary mentions, it's easier to bring yourself to kill someone when they're doing their best to kill you. She vomits after the mission.
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  • Child Soldiers: The kids become these.
  • Coming-of-Age Story
  • Command Roster:
  • Cool Teacher: Mr. Henderson, the history teacher, who was sadly Too Cool to Live. When a rebel officer shot him, the kids swarmed said officer.
  • Don't Call Me Sir: Megan knows this rule, although she nearly slips up in the first chapter. Later, the kids who become enlisted personnel or NCOs take it on.
  • Emperor Scientist: The Empire was founded by a nonevil one - Patricia Kelly was a physicist who invented the first FTL drive (as opposed to the Portal Network). It's something of a tradition for royals to enter the sciences.
  • The Empire / The Federation: The Terran Empire subverts The Empire, and really serves as more of a Federation, albeit with a hereditary monarch as head of state.
    • The Draconis Hegemony plays The Empire frighteningly straight.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: The Hegemony thinks in terms of brute force, and assumed that if they could simply hammer the Imperial Navy, the people would fall in line. They just didn't understand the difference between their own subjects and Imperial citizens, and the willingness of Imperial citizens to fight to preserve the Empire is a major part of how the Empire survived long enough to get its feet back out from under it.
  • Falling into the Cockpit: A ship-sized version. They get to stay even after they reunite with the rest of the Navy, since the Navy is so strapped for personnel that they aren't going to waste anyone on Revenant, which has a competent, experienced crew.
  • Follow in My Footsteps: Megan's parents wanted her to join the Imperial Navy like they did, and raised her with military values. Unlike some cases, they took a relatively light approach - they wanted her to be a happy, well-adjusted naval officer. And while Megan resented them pushing her, the idea of a military career itself held some attraction.
    • Fantasy-Forbidding Father: Averted - while Megan's parents were clear on what they wanted her to do with her life, they supported Megan's choice in hobbies.
  • Faster-Than-Light Travel: There are actually two methods in this setting.
    • Portal Network: The gates. Given enough power, any single gate can connect to any other gate. The Draconis begin their invasion by destroying as much of the Imperial gate network as possible.
    • Alcubierre Drive: The imperial jump drive is based on this concept.
  • The High Queen: Empress Shannon. It's mentioned that the Empire has had more Empresses than Emperors.
  • Heavy Worlder: Hilary Reeves.
  • I Choose to Stay: None of the kids take the offer to leave the ship's company after they return to Earth. Most of them later choose to remain in the military after the war.
  • Kids' Wilderness Epic: Has shades of this, swapping the war-torn Empire for a genuine wilderness.
  • Lipstick Lesbian: Ingrid
  • Parental Abandonment: Megan loses both of her parents in the first two chapters - first her dad, then her mom.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Vladimir Rurikovich, the class bully. Midway through the first book, he tries to take over Revenant, and Megan only spares him because she's short on personnel. He gets better over the next book. Then, in the third, he infiltrates a Draconis warship, transmits its computer contents to Revenant, and then blows himself and the ship up with a nuclear warhead.
  • Royal Mess: The only clear rule for determining a noble's title is the whim of the Emperor or Empress who created that title. Planets normally have Barons, systems have Counts, and sectors have Dukes, but some planets or systems - generally the older ones - are given special privilege, like the Duchy of Sirius. The Sol System is the only Grand Duchy in the Empire, and its title is traditionally granted to the heir apparent.
    • Also, while most aristocracies ranked knights below most titled nobles, knights in the Terran Empire are ranked only below the Cabinet Lords (all of whom are knights). This is a deliberate practice, as all knights earned their titles rather than inheriting them. Also, being knighted is equivalent to receiving the Nobel Prize or the Medal of Honor.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Most members of the House of Kelly choose careers in either the military or the sciences.
  • Space Opera
  • The Stoic: Oz is capable of remaining completely calm in any situation. This comes in handy when she has to perform surgery to save Ms. Chin's life without the benefit of, you know, ANY medical training.
  • Succession Crisis / Unexpected Successor: In the third book, we learn that the rebels managed to take out a large slice of the Royal Family, even more than just the Emperor and his children and grandchildren. On top of that, the crippling of much of the galaxy's communications network makes figuring out who the true heir is difficult. Megan (who was initially 23rd in the succession) realizes that she might be the new Empress. Fortunately for Megan, she's not the Empress - her cousin Shannon is. That said, Megan is now fifth in line to the throne, so she's entitled to high-level security clearance.
  • Teenage Wasteland: Averted - Megan imposes military discipline on her classmates, since it's the only way they'll have any chance of getting home.
  • There Are No Adults: Subverted. This is only true with regards to Revenant itself. There are plenty of adults on other ships, and of course on planets. But the ones on planets can't really help, and the ones on ships are the enemy.
  • Took a Level in Badass: The crew, over the course of the series.
  • Tuckerization: Several:
    • Joe Buckley, Baen's Designated Victim, is a student who dies in the first battle.
    • In the dedication, the author lists four writers who influenced him greatly. Each appears as a minor character, with one of their famous protagonists as their assistant:
  • Yellow Eyes of Sneakiness: Eitan Mears has golden eyes. It's not a disease, but an inherited mutation. Played with and ultimately subverted, as while he initially tries to displace Megan as the person in charge, he eventually accepts her authority.
  • You Are in Command Now: Megan is given command by her mother, using an obscure regulation that allows her to induct civilians into the military. Megan then uses it to induct her classmates into the military as well.
  • Young and in Charge: Megan, who becomes a captain in the Terran Imperial Navy at 14.

Example of: