The Planetsider: Uncover the Past. Fight for the Future.
G J Ogden, author
Several generations after The Fall, an event that caused the near annihilation of all life on the planet, the scattered pockets of civilisation that grew in its wake live in ignorance of the past. No-one wants to know what caused such devastation or why. No-one, except Ethan. Ethan used to believe in the guardians; mysterious lights in the night sky that, according to folklore, protect the survivors and safeguard them from The Maddening, a debilitating sickness that killed many of the earliest survivors, and twisted others into Roamers, dangerous nomads stripped of their humanity and conscience. But the death of his parents when he was a boy shattered his faith and instilled within him a hunger to learn the truth. One night as Ethan watches, a light grows brighter in the night sky and crashes to the planet’s surface near the ruins of an ancient city. Ethan volunteers to investigate and finds Maria, a descendent of the pre-Fall civilisation, trapped on a city on the moon during the events of the war that destroyed the planet, who has risked everything to find a Planetsider; a man or woman born on the planet and possessing a natural resilience to the radiation. She needs Ethan’s help to save her people, and in return Ethan will finally know the truth. But the truth comes at a terrible cost and quickly Ethan finds himself at the centre of a conflict that has raged for generations, placing his own life and the lives of the people he loves in the balance.
In this action-packed debut, Ogden introduces Ethan, a member of the ranger force of the Forest Gate settlement on a postapocalyptic world known only as “the planet,” who discovers two visitors from the moon. Ethan hopes the crash-landed arrivals can explain why some people succumb to the Maddening, an affliction that turns people into violent monsters. Unbeknownst to those still living on the planet, the destruction was caused between two moon settlements that were vying for economic dominance and remain locked in a bitter war. The more he learns, the less he trusts the outsiders, but Ethan agrees to assist them mostly because of his fascination with one of them, Maria Salus. When Ethan reaches the moon, both of the warring groups want his cooperation, and Ethan must decide the future of their communities as well as his own. Though the emotional moments are occasionally flawed, the strong action sequences and thoughtful worldbuilding make this one worth picking up for fans of plot-driven SF. (BookLife)