Acclaimed author Emma Newman returns to the captivating universe she created in Planetfall with a stunning science fiction mystery where one man’s murder is much more than it seems—an Arthur C. Clarke Award Nominee.
Gov-corp detective Carlos Moreno was only a baby when Atlas left Earth to seek truth among the stars. But in that moment, the course of Carlos’s entire life changed. Atlas is what took his mother away; what made his father lose hope; what led Alejandro Casales, leader of the religious cult known as the Circle, to his door. And now, on the eve of the fortieth anniversary of Atlas’s departure, it’s got something to do why Casales was found dead in his hotel room—and why Carlos is the man in charge of the investigation.
To figure out who killed one of the most powerful men on Earth, Carlos is supposed to put aside his personal history. But the deeper he delves into the case, the more he realizes that escaping the past is not so easy. There’s more to Casales’s death than meets the eye, and something much more sinister to the legacy of Atlas than anyone realizes...
In this richly written companion novel to Planetfall, Newman returns to the Earth that the interstellar explorers in the first book left behind. Carlos Moreno's mother was selected to leave Earth on the legendary star cruiser Atlas. Carlos was not only abandoned by her but neglected by his father and betrayed by an idealistic cult leader. After being captured by the corporate government and sold under a contract that amounts to slavery, he works as an investigator and eventually is forced to solve the murder of the man he holds responsible for his plight. Despite his grief and anger, Moreno's training compels him to leave no stone unturned, even when he reveals secrets that might destroy any chance he has of ever being free again. Newman again portrays a world of luxury bought with pain and suffering, built on lies and sustained by powerful individuals who exploit the ignorance of the masses. Both new and returning readers will be drawn into this tale of those who suffered the loss of loved ones who put the Atlas mission ahead of their own families, never to be heard from again. With details like diamonds, the gumshoe adventure reveals the destruction of those left behind when Atlas left Earth seeking God. Peril and despair seep into the fabric of society until every avenue of escape leads only to a new kind of danger. Gripping and sorrowful, this imaginative story is a satisfying return to Newman's future of greed and hope.