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Tomorrow's Kin: Book 1 of the Yesterday's Kin Trilogy Kindle Edition
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Tomorrow's Kin is the first volume in and all new hard science fiction trilogy by Nancy Kress based on the Nebula Award-winning Yesterday's Kin.
Locus 2017 Recommended Reading List
The aliens have arrived... they've landed their Embassy ship on a platform in New York Harbor, and will only speak with the United Nations. They say that their world is so different from Earth, in terms of gravity and atmosphere, that they cannot leave their ship. The population of Earth has erupted in fear and speculation.
One day Dr. Marianne Jenner, an obscure scientist working with the human genome, receives an invitation that she cannot refuse. The Secret Service arrives at her college to escort her to New York, for she has been invited, along with the Secretary General of the UN and a few other ambassadors, to visit the alien Embassy.
The truth is about to be revealed. Earth’s most elite scientists have ten months to prevent a disaster—and not everyone is willing to wait.
At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
Praise for Tomorrow's Kin
Washington Post Best New Science Fiction for Summer
“Tomorrow’s Kin’s begins in a way that readers of her earlier writing and Sir Arthur C Clarke’s Childhood’s End will recognise―the arrival to Earth of aliens―but then, like the best of Clarke, transcends from this to something new and contemporary.”―SFF World
"A refreshingly original piece of science fiction."―Tor.com
“Kress mixes contemporary issues of isolationism and refugee status with classic SF first-contact tropes, threaded neatly with solid scientific theory and speculation.”―Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A solid, riveting and fast-paced tale.”―RT Book Reviews (5 stars out of 5)
Praise for the Hugo Award-winning Yesterday's Kin
“Kress has proven that she can pack a huge amount of story into a small container, and here the author expertly explores one family’s experience of alien visitation.”―Library Journal
“Sparely constructed and cleverly resolved, Yesterday’s Kin provides everything readers need for an immersive plunge into a frightening, fascinating and inescapable predicament.”―Seattle Times
"Hard Science Fiction is a thing! And Nancy Kress blew this one completely out of the park."―Book Ink Reviews
"If you’re looking for a solid piece of hard SF, this looks like the start of an exciting new series."―Sci-Fi and Fantasy Review
"Skillfully written."―Fantasy Book Cafe
“Nancy Kress delivers one of the strongest stories of the year to date.... As with all of Kress’s work, this is very nicely crafted, with well-paced prose that carries you through the story, complex human characters, a compelling and conflict-driven human story, a clever twist partway through, and an even cleverer twist at the end.”―Gardner Dozois, editor of The Year’s Best Science Fiction series
About the Author
- ASIN : B01N1U23FW
- Publisher : Tor Books (July 11, 2017)
- Publication date : July 11, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 1989 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 350 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #689,309 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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The book itself is OK. The storyline doesn't advance much in Parts Two and Three, and Marianne's romantic travails just aren't that interesting. The portrayal of the children might have been the most compelling part of the story, but they're relegated to subplot.
not my favorite that year - "We Are All Completely Fine" by Daryl Gregory would have gotten my vote if I was an eligible voter - I did like it quite a bit. I had a few quibbles with it, but all in all it was a fine story. Sometime after that I'd heard she was going to expand it into a novel; I was unaware and surprised that the intent was to expand it into a trilogy. I wasn't then, and am not now, quite sure where she is going with the story, but the pleasure is in the discovery of reading it, I suppose.
The first third or so of TOMORROW'S KIN is the original novella - probably with some modifications (to be fair, I don't remember the original well enough to be able to pick up on changes, although I suspect they're minor) - while the
last two thirds or so continues in the aftermath of the Denebs visit and the Earth passing through the spore cloud. The spore cloud did not kill off humanity as was originally indicated by the Denebs. Instead, the cloud caused havoc with other portions of the ecosystem on Earth, causing the balance of nature to be thrown off thus causing massive economic and ecological issues. To be sure, some humans were killed by the spore cloud, but most were not. Still, the unforeseen - by humanity, but maybe not by the Denebs - have divided the natives of Earth.
As a sign of gratitude, the Denebs have given us the plans and technology to build a star ship. But the gift of interstellar travel has, for many, raised even more suspicions of the Denebs. If they knew that the spore cloud was going to have the aforementioned unintended consequences, what else are they not telling with this gift? Feelings and opinions are split. One faction would like to build the star ship and make a peaceful visit to "World", as the home planet of the Denebs is called. Another faction would like to use those star ships to travel to World and attack the Denebs, and a third doesn't trust them and want nothing to do with the star ship. Maryanne Jenner, the protagonist of the original novella now has a role with a foundation that supports traveling to the stars. She travels the country making speeches on behalf of a foundation that is supporting the effort to build the star ship in the United States (it should be noted that many nations world wide are attempting to build the star ship, and that there are at least three different efforts going on in the United States alone. Maryanne is approached by the head of one of the efforts; he wants to give her foundation lots of money to go out and spread the good word of going to the stars. He is a shady character at best, and his motives are questionable.
One of the other side effects of the spore cloud is that children who are born after the Earth passes through the cloud cry almost continuously for a good portion of the first couple of years of their lives. Sometimes the crying stops, other times it does not - leading to undesirable outcomes. It is discovered that those who stop have a gift; they can hear sound above the highest frequency and below the lowest frequency previously known to be audible by humankind. As you might guess, the discovery of this gift has huge implications for the story.
As with the original novella, Maryanne Jenner's family is central to the entire novel, although the focus really comes down to her grandchildren. Her son Noah has left with the Denebs to go to World. Her daughter Elizabeth is largely offstage for the last two thirds of the book, probably working against the efforts to build a star ship, and her son Ryan has descended into depression over his role in the Deneb visit. I expect that all three of Maryanne's children will have large roles to play in the remaining two books of the trilogy.
As is probably obvious, the book is not only about family, but about consequences, unintended or not. All actions have consequences, and it's how we as a race react to and deal with those consequences that define who we are as individuals and as a species. Most times the consequences we deal with are not enormous or far reaching. It's the nature of fiction, however, that consequences that characters deal with are far reaching and significant. I feel that the characters of TOMORROW'S KIN have barely scratched the surface of what's to come, and I'm looking forward to the next book in the trilogy.
Marguerite Gavin is an outstanding narrator, one of the best I've listened to. She has a tremendous ability to voice all sorts of characters, whether they be male or female, child or adult, or even human or machine simulated. I enjoyed her voice and pacing. Like Jefferson Mays, who narrates the outstanding Expanse series of novels, I would be thrilled to listen to more of her narration. I hope she continues to narrate the Yesterday's Kin trilogy. It will make the listening experience all that much more worthwhile.
Tomorrow's Kin is genuinely hard science fiction. Evolutionary biology dominates, and Kress manages to make most of it intelligible to a lay audience. The story is set in the near future, when global warming has triggered increasingly severe climate change. Destructive superstorms wreak havoc throughout the United States with little warning. Seas are rising alarmingly. And the US government remains dominated by right-wing politicians with little or no understanding of science. But most of the characters in the novel pay little attention to the world around them.
Hard sci-fi about evolutionary biology
Dr. Marianne Jenner, the protagonist, is an evolutionary biologist. She has just written a groundbreaking paper in human genetics, reporting on the existence of a thirty-first human haplogroup. This is a fancy name for a genetic profile that identifies a group of people as direct descendants of a single parent. Yes, it's quite technical, and Kress builds her case on a lot more of this sort of information. But it's all eminently readable. And for anyone with even a rudimentary background in physical science, it's reasonably easy to understand.
First contact is just the beginning
Marianne's paper has somehow attracted the attention of a group of aliens from the direction of the star Deneb. They have landed in New York Harbor and entered into negotiations with the United Nations. Eventually, they request that Marianne join them in what is called the Embassy. (They refuse to show themselves.)
At the behest of the Denebs, Marianne and several dozen of the world's top scientists in a wide range of fields enter the Embassy and set to work on an urgent project of mutual interest to both Terrans and Denebs. And Marianne's research is at the heart of the project. Which leads her to play a central role in all that ensues as the project's deadline passes.
A suspenseful story, very well told
A strange relationship slowly emerges between the Terrans and Denebs. But, throughout, we never lose sight of Marianne and her family. Each of them plays a significant role in the action that unfolds.
There's no getting away from it. Tomorrow's Kin is hard sci-fi, and it's about evolutionary biology. But it's also a grim story that is never predictable. Kress does a terrific job building suspense to the breaking point. This novel is an ideal point of entry for the two books that follow in the Yesterday's Kin Trilogy.
About the author
Nancy Kress has won six Nebula Awards and two Hugos for her novellas, novelettes, and short stories, as well as other awards in the science fiction field. Kim Stanley Robinson has referred to her as "One of the best science fiction writers working today." To date, she has written twenty-seven novels; the first of them was published in 1981. Kress has outlived three husbands. Most recently, she has been living in Seattle with her fourth. Although most of her stories are solidly grounded in known science, she has never gained a degree in any scientific discipline. Her work is based exclusively on intensive research.