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Literature / Tau Ceti Agenda Series

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The Tau Ceti Agenda Series is relatively hard military science fiction by author Travis S. Taylor. In a somewhat dystopian future, politically the United States has changed a lot. Changes include no electoral college and no term-limited presidents. Has been described as "a sci-fi 24".

Each of the books contains the events of one very important day in the series timeline.

  1. One Day on Mars covers the 24 hours leading up to a key event on Mars and the events immediately afterward. A lot of people are caught up in the consequences
  2. The Tau Ceti Agenda covers an attempted assassination, a critical new technology used in combat, and and attempt to influence an election.
  3. One Good Soldier is much the same as the previous books, with critical events all happening in a single day.


This series provides examples of:

  • Colonized Solar System: Mars has been colonized long enough for people to have a particular phenotype (tall, pale, black-haired).
  • The Conspiracy: What else can you call it when Elle Ahmi is responsible for causing the entire military and political situation to further her agenda?
  • Designated Victim: Poor Joe Buckley, the designated victim of choice among Baen authors ends up dead in a particularly nasty manner in the first book. In the following books, Joe Buckley Jr. comes pretty dang close to following in his father's footsteps a couple of times.
  • The Empire: The United States, although technically a democracy, is now considered an empire. The various colonist groups, both within the solar system and outside it, find themselves almost without representation.
  • Evil Versus Evil: You have The Empire US, who engages in the very practices that fomented the Revolutionary War, versus the Separatists, who massacre civilians by the boatload. Caught in the middle are decent people who are doing what they think is right.
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  • Fantastic Racism: The Martian Separatists are derogatorily referred to as "Seppies", a term that the President during One Day on Mars refuses to allow his administration to use.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: The series takes place over several years, but each book only covers 24 critically important hours. There are numerous references to battles that happen outside of the books.
  • Our Presidents Are Different:
    • One Day on Mars features President Focus Group.
    • Alexander Moore, who becomes president after the events of One Day on Mars is President Action.
  • Ramming Always Works: In One Day on Mars, the USS Margaret Thatcher rams a suicide ship to prevent it from destroying a city.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Elle Ahmi, aka Sienna Madira, considered the greatest president ever, wants to restore the US as it once was and isn't afraid to kill millions to accomplish this goal.
  • We Need a Distraction: In One Day on Mars, the Martian Separatists launch a full scale attack on the Olympus Mons megacity, including the use of weapons of mass destruction, so that the US military won't be able to prevent the Martian Exodus.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Elle Ahmi's plan to destroy Luna City in The Tau Ceti Agenda qualifies. She wants Alexander Moore to win reelection. The entire election hangs on Luna City. If he saves the city, it will vote for him. If Ahmi succeeds in destroying it, it won't vote against him.
  • Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: Par for the course.