On Cirrus, the world-sized space station that produces a quarter of Earth’s food, the teenage Jack Scatter lives in a small farming community. He has spent thousands of hours talking to his girlfriend Sarah Rogers online. She lives in a different part of Cirrus and they’ve never actually met in person. Centuries earlier Sir Isaac Newton had prophesied that the world would end in 2090. As the date grows ever nearer a group of people called The Travellers, psychics with telekinetic powers who can remember the future, have decreed that the world will end within the month. This is an event to be known as ‘Newton’.
Pieter Reynard, a Traveller, has his own version of the apocalypse that he is seeking to implement. Reynard is a major player. Using old Earth wealth he was one of the multi-billionaires who’d built the space station. He’s made himself immensely rich and has no intention of letting that go. Jack and Sarah uncover his plan and must try to thwart him. But Reynard is not alone in his plotting. Can either Earth or Cirrus be saved?
John Harvey’s BROKEN SKY is the first book in ‘The Chronicles of Cirrus’ series and it is a fast paced YA novel that is cleverly structured and full of action. Harvey’s world building and ability to invoke a sense of place is wonderful. The space station Cirrus, almost a surrogate Earth, is incredibly detailed and its purpose and methods entirely believable. Harvey’s future uses wormhole technology to cover travel and transportation across the vast distances between Earth and Cirrus. This technology has been utilized by corporations for everything from telecoms to clean water supply. When contrasted with the pollution and ecological damage that the author reveals to have befallen Earth this reliance on future science and off-planet solutions for human survival is highly credible. Jack and Sarah are both engaging heroes with their youthful passion, in particular Sarah’s green ambitions, proving at least a temporary match for the wicked industrialist Reynard. It’s a familiar YA story in many ways, the classic take down of the oppressor by feisty teens, but it is exceptionally well done. And note too the impressive fantasy art space station illustration on the book’s cover.
John Harvey’s BROKEN SKY is a terrific, action packed YA novel that is imaginative, carefully structured and driven by entertaining characters. A winning start to ‘The Chronicles of Cirrus’ series.
~Kent Lane for IndieReader