FORSAKEN SKIES in space

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Reviews -

re­leased OUT NOW! 570 pages | Pa­per­back/ebook Au­thor d Nolan Clark Pub­lisher Or­bit

Fermi’s para­dox asks why, when alien life must surely be an in­evitabil­ity, and the uni­verse is bil­lions of years old, Earth hasn’t al­ready been vis­ited by some form of ex­tra-ter­res­trial. In Forsaken Skies, hu­man­ity has been ex­plor­ing the stars for hun­dreds of years, with no sign of aliens. The con­clu­sion is that they don’t ex­ist, and the whole con­cept is now con­sid­ered ab­surd. But then some­thing comes along that’s en­tirely out­side the Navy’s range of ex­pe­ri­ence…

The planet Ni­raya is un­der at­tack, and the cor­po­ra­tion re­spon­si­ble for its wel­fare has writ­ten it off, de­ter­min­ing it cheaper to sim­ply let it – and its in­hab­i­tants – die. For­tu­nately for them, Aleis­ter La­noe, a re­tired and renowned Navy commander, is in the right place at the right time, and brings to­gether a rag­tag col­lec­tion of pi­lots, con men and fugi­tives to de­fend the planet. It’s a tiny group against a huge in­vad­ing force – but it might just work.

It’s not an orig­i­nal premise, but grip­ping writ­ing, a bril­liantly re­alised fu­ture cul­ture and sym­pa­thetic char­ac­ters – Ehta, a for­mer pi­lot suf­fer­ing from PTSD, and Valk, who lives in con­stant pain and never leaves his space­suit, are par­tic­u­lar high­lights – make this an en­ter­tain­ing and com­pelling read. Rhian Drinkwa­ter

“D Nolan Clark” is a pseu­do­nym for David Welling­ton, per­haps best known for his Mon­ster Is­land zom­bie tril­ogy.

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