It’s already been a little over 2 years since the latest book of the Safehold series by David Weber, titled Through Fiery Trials came out. On both Reddit and Goodreads, fans expressed dissatisfaction as they felt the book was a bit of a filler, without the plot moving forward in substantial ways. So will there be a book 11, and when? And how many Safehold books will there be?
Safehold is a sci-fi series unfolding in the far future, mainly in the 31st century, in the world of “Safehold” where the remainders of humanity are protecting themselves from an alien race that exterminated the rest of humans.
Interestingly for a work of science fiction, said humans inhabit a base with minimal technology and no electricity. The theocratic system discourages any involvement with science and technology. Since the Gbaba, the aliens that endanger humanity, are, strangely, not the main focus, the books are largely concerned with the church and the strife that comes from such a religious system.
So far, there have been 10 books in the series:
Off Armageddon Reef (2007)
By Schism Rent Asunder (2008)
By Heresies Distressed (2009)
A Mighty Fortress (2010)
How Firm a Foundation (2011)
Midst Toil and Tribulation (2012)
Like a Might Army (2014)
Hell’s Foundations Quiver (2015)
At the Sign of Triumph (2016)
Through Fiery Trials (2019)
In line with the religious theme of the series, the titles are derived from hymns.
The first books of the series secured consistently good reviews if the over 4/5 Goodreads ratings are any indication. With the tenth, Through Fiery Trials, things became more complicated, as a lot of fans observed that the book felt unnecessary. Having little gone on, it focuses on weddings, natural deaths and other common occurrences that fans felt did not make for an intriguing installment.
Some believe that just skipping most of the book and only reading the final chapters would be enough preparation for book 11. But when is this going to be released?
Unfortunately, it’s hard to tell at this point. The author hasn’t made an official announcement and there is no Goodreads or Amazon entry for the book to help us speculate. In the first years of Safehold, there used to be one new book yearly. The only breaches to that rule of thumb were the 2-year-gap between books 6 and 7 and the 3-year gap between books 9 and 10.
Although there’s no indication that Safehold book 11 is turning into a Winds of Winter or Doors of Stone with delay after delay for the last decade, we can’t help noticing that the author’s pace has slowed down. Even so, many fans are confident that the series will continue and that all loose ends will be resolved in due course, despite some rumors that the series won’t continue.
Book 10 was concerned with new characters and set the tone for subsequent books, serving as a prologue of sorts, so it’s more than likely that Weber intends to return to Safehold. After ten continuous years in the project, the need for a break doesn’t seem far-fetched, especially since the author is still active; in January 2021, the second book of the Out of the Dark series came out after more than ten years.
In the News section of the author's website, the release of Into the Light is the latest update we have. But 10 books in the same series show his love for the world he created, and there is no indication that the author plans to abandon it just yet. In such a massive world, it’s hard to predict how many more books we can expect, but as book 10 was initially designed as a prologue for a second Safehold series, we can expect a good number.