David Brin’s Uplift novels—Sundiver, Hugo award winner The Uplift War, and Hugo and Nebula winner Startide Rising—are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction tales ever written. Now David Brin returns to this future universe for a new Uplift trilogy, packed with adventure, passion and wit.
The planet Jijo is forbidden to settlers, its ecology protected by guardians of the Five Galaxies. But over the centuries it has been resettled, populated by refugees of six intelligent races. Together they have woven a new society in the wilderness, drawn together by their fear of Judgment Day, when the Five Galaxies will discover their illegal colony. Then a strange starship arrives on Jijo. Does it bring the long-dreaded judgment, or worse—a band of criminals willing to destroy the six races of Jijo in order to cover their own crimes?
This is the first volume in a projected trilogy set in the universe of Brin's Hugo-winning The Uplift War. It's a multivoice narrative concerning the six diverse cultures living on the banned planet Jijo--and what happens to their peaceful society when more humans arrive there via starship, searching for species to ``uplift'' by bringing them to the next level of sentience. Because, long ago, the advanced Buyur civilization declared Jijo off-limits in order to preserve its ecology, the species that have secretly sought sanctuary on the planet have been expecting a ``Judgment Day'' on which the starfaring races will punish them for ignoring the ban. Focusing on narratives from the planet's inhabitants, including the three human children of the paper-crafter Nelo (one a mathematician/linguist, one a religious conservative, one an expert Tracker), and on diary entries from the aliens Asx and Alvin, as well as on the thoughts of a mysterious human starfighter whose memory was badly damaged during his crash-landing on Jijo, the story line follows the characters' attempts to respond in civilized ways to the devastating changes wrought by the arrival of the human starfarers. While the narrative does not so much conclude as simply stop in midstream, it describes a universe that's immensely appealing, leaving readers hungry for more of this exciting, epic adventure.