An alien race struggles to survive on an uninhabitable planet in this “impeccably detailed and beautifully thought out” novel from a Hugo Award winner (Kirkus Reviews, starred review).
On a planet besieged with cosmic dust, where meteors of all sizes frequently hit, wiping out entire civilizations, a strange alien species struggles against extinction over the course of millennia. As their star grows hotter, melting ice caps and causing more earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, higher levels of radiation lead to higher rates of mutation. Plants that had been edible become poisonous or die off altogether. Watching their dire situation only get worse, the planet’s scientists finally acknowledge that to survive long-term, the inhabitants will have to abandon their fraught home world and become a space-faring species.
In a story that spans millennia, Hugo Award–winning author and British science fiction master John Brunner introduces us to an alien race that takes control of their own evolution and builds the technological society that will be their way into space.
“One of the most important science fiction authors. Brunner held a mirror up to reflect our foibles because he wanted to save us from ourselves.” —SF Site