An ancient threat returns to conquer humanity. They ruled the planet once and they will do it again. Humans can't fight this war—not without help.
For years, Dr. Ethan Fawkes has been communicating with a mysterious scientist using an encoded signal, and together, they designed the first spaceship meant for war. But when the government orders Ethan to dismantle it, his collaborator reveals a terrible secret. An army of powerful aliens is about to invade Earth, and humans must rush to prepare a defense or risk losing their freedom forever.
Collaboration with an unlikely ally is humanity’s only chance at survival.
Fiona has no memories of her origins, but somehow, she shares half her DNA with the invaders. For this, she lives a life of scorn and shame amongst humans. When the enemy arrives to enslave her village, will she help the humans who hate her or join the aliens who welcome her? The key to victory lies in the depths of her obscure past. Can she remember her true heritage before it's too late?
The Lost Signal is the first book in the Slaves of Zisaida trilogy: a riveting Science Fantasy saga about our galaxy's war for survival against an intergalactic threat. If you're a fan of Stargate, The Atlantis Gene, and Battlestar Galactica, get on this thrill ride. Come for the Space Force, stay for the aliens
Surprisingly, despite the themes of slavery and genocide, the tone is often light; the characters are quick to banter and laugh despite the high stakes of impending doom. There are some elements that may leave readers wondering. It’s unclear when the story is set; all readers learn is that the US is a shell of its former self (“a bottom-feeder country)” and the Salt Lake Space Force Base crew is badly scarred but forever united by a previous decision to turn against the American military during a war and save Japanese civilians.
One particular strength in Morales’s worldbuilding lies in the details about the Uruklu; they’re humanoid-ish but have tentacles, go through a tadpole stage and, most importantly they have nervelike tentacles (“neurals”) that allow them to take in information, learn languages, and connect their nervous systems directly to their spaceships, controlling them like limbs. Science fiction fans will enjoy this engaging, well-paced caper and look forward to the sequel.
Takeaway: This engaging story about a group of unlikely heroes trying to save humanity will appeal to sci-fi fans.
Great for fans of: Mike Chen’s A Beginning at the End, Hao Jingfang’s Vagabonds.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: B
"A science-fiction story that is as riveting as it is beguiling, with twists that augment the overall satisfaction of the reading experience, action that is intense and unabated, and characters that are likable... The story is fast-paced and intriguing, written with focused scenes and in a style that balances great dialogue with the strength of descriptive prose. The sense of urgency begins the moment the conflict is introduced. I particularly loved the way Fiona is imagined. She is in a dilemma, caught between people who detest her and yet badly need her help and an enemy that shares the same DNA with her. The Lost Signal is cleverly plotted and skillfully written, a must-read." -- Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite