We've found another Earthlike planet, but what secrets does it hold?
The entire world is thrilled by the discovery of a new Earthlike planet. Advance imaging shows that the planet has oceans of liquid water and a breathable oxygen-rich atmosphere. Eager to gain more information, a human exploration team is soon dispatched to explore the planet, now nicknamed New Earth.
All of the explorers understand that they are essentially on a one-way mission. The trip takes eighty years each way, so even if they are able to get back to Earth, nearly 200 years will have elapsed. They will have aged only a dozen years thanks to cryonic suspension, but their friends and family will be gone and the very society that they once knew will have changed beyond recognition. The explorers are going into exile, and they know it. They are on this mission not because they were the best available, but because they were expendable.
Upon landing on the planet they discover something unexpected: New Earth is inhabited by a small group of intelligent creatures who look very much like human beings.
Who are these people? Are they native to this world, or invaders from elsewhere?
While they may seem inordinately friendly to the human explorers, what are their real motivations? What do they want?
Moreover, the scientists begin to realize that this planet cannot possibly be natural. They face a startling and nearly unthinkable question: Could New Earth be an artifact?
The author of more than 100 futuristic novels and nonfiction books, Dr. Ben Bova has been involved in science and high technology since the very beginnings of the space age.
President Emeritus of the National Space Society and a past president of Science Fiction Writers of America, Dr. Bova received the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation in 2005, "for fueling mankind's imagination regarding the wonders of outer space."
His 2006 novel TITAN received the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best novel of the year. Earlier, he was an award-winning editor of ANALOG and OMNI and an executive in the aerospace industry.
Dr. Bova is a frequent commentator on radio and television and popular lecturer.