The 40.000 colonists on Gehenna are abandoned for political reasons.
When the re-supply ships fail to arrive, the colony begins to collapse. But the real story is yet to come.
Over a period of 200 years, the descendants of the colonists who couldn't impost Terran conditions on Gehenna became a part of Gehennan ecology themselves, by entering a partnership with the planet's native intelligence – the lizardlike, burrowing calibans.
C. J. Cherryh (born 1942) is the pen name of Carolyn Janice Cherry, a multiple-award-winning science fiction and fantasy writer. She currently resides in Spokane County, Washington.
Cherryh is pronounced ”Cherry”. The author appended a silent ”h” to her real name because her first editor felt that ”Cherry” sounded too much like a romance writer.
The asteroid 77185 Cherryh has been named in her honour.