Narrator: Eric Martin
Series: Ship Series #1
Published by Tantor Audio on 30 May 2017
Length: 7 hrs and 4 mins
Genres: Science Fiction
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The Ship fled a dying Earth to save the human race. Launched as the last gasp of humanity, the Ship set out to preserve the species by seeding the universe with one billion colonists. Generations of crew, trained to be either flight or marines, have spent 5,000 years protecting the Ship and its civilian cargo from the constant threat of alien violence.
Fifteen-year-old Zax has always had trouble fitting in with the other cadets, but he's finally on the cusp of attaining his dream and gaining entrance to the Pilot Academy. Catching the eye of the flight boss and winning him as a mentor should guarantee Zax a top spot, unless the shocking discovery he makes along the way destroys not only his career, but also the Ship itself.
©2015 Jerry Aubin (P)2017 Tantor
An enormous colony ship has fled a dying Earth, housing a billion suspended humans and a vast crew in search of habitable worlds. Now five thousand years in the future, a culture of competition and perfection pervades the crew. Points and credits are given for excellent performance, taken away for mistakes and failure. Go too low and you are added to the suspended colonists dropped on hospitable worlds.
Zax is an exceptional crewman, agile, brilliant and effective, only he can’t seem to control his stomach during faster than light travel. He is constantly bullied and ostracized for this ailment. He is driven to command a pilot’s seat or even the commander’s chair, so he’ll do anything to succeed. And in this dog-eat-dog environment, he’ll let others fail if it means his own success. His problem is a quirky girl who doesn’t care about the merit system but is just as brilliant and skillful as he is. When they discover the ulterior motives of the command structure, they have to decide to speak up and lose all hope of achieving their ambitions, or sit by and allow the evil to perpetuate a corrupt system.
Landfall is a futuristic coming of age story. Zax’s character feels a little contradictory a lot of the time. Constantly bullied and threatened, he sounds more like a victim, yet is being groomed for command. The action and comradery are a welcome addition to the simple plot, though the constant attention to his nausea affliction is distracting to the story. Five thousand years of technology and they can’t fix this? Seems unrealistic.
Landfall is performed by Eric Martin, who does an excellent job. His voice is pleasant and his characters are easily discerned. He lends the appropriate mood to the novel and holds a quick pace.
Because the protagonists are teens, the novel is a good fit for young adults, but anyone interested in futuristic space colonization stories should enjoy it too. An entertaining and easy listen that doesn’t break too much new ground. The strange and destructive culture of advancement is the exception and gives the listener something to think about. This is book one and two in the series. It ends well enough but is clear that the story is far from complete. If you enjoy it, you’ll be looking forward to the sequel(s).