EverfreeBy Jacqueline Bundy
Posted at April 27, 2006 - 9:30 PM GMT
Author: Nick Sagan
Release Date: May 2006
Imagine waking up one day to find that decades have passed and the world you knew is gone; everyone and everything you have ever known swept away. In Everfree, former Star Trek writer Nick Sagan concludes the post-apocalyptic saga that he began in the acclaimed sci-fi thriller Idlewild (2003) and continued with the stylish Edenborn (2004), with a riveting story that takes a hard look at humankind's predatory and rapacious nature.
As Everfree opens it has been over forty years since the Black Ep ravaged the world wiping out billions. The only survivors, a small group of genetically modified "post-humans" who were created as a contingency plan during the darkest days of the plague, have found a cure for the disease and are in the process of waking those who were privileged enough or powerful enough to have been held in cryonic stasis in anticipation of a cure. The post-humans believe in a collective society, and are encouraging the newly awoken to embrace a simple idea: We're all in this together.
At first, everyone agrees on the basics: We're lucky to be alive. Let's look out for each other, share the work and build a better world. Inevitably, though, as more survivors are roused, there are those who disagree. People who remember power are waking up to a new world, and they do not intend to wait their turn. But a surprise awaits that will transform the future for everyone in this post-plague world.
"...you can't just thaw and run." Hal states in the opening pages of Everfree. "The thawed have questions." As the primary narrator of the story told in Everfree, Halloween, or Hal, is about as cynical as them come. One of the five remaining post-humans of the original nine, Hal has a lot to be cynical about and Sagan wastes no time getting the reader up to speed with the current situation. From there Hal leads readers through a sometimes painful account of the human's first tentative steps towards resuming the responsibility for civilization and while it's not a pretty picture, it is a very truthful and realistic one.
Everfree is an exceptional and thought provoking read. The themes explored in Everfree reverberate clearly as page by page you are drawn into Sagan's richly imaginative future. Ultimately though, Everfree leaves you feeling hopeful that we, as a society, might one day overcome the need to mindlessly pursue conflict.
Jacqueline Bundy is a news writer for the Trek Nation. An archive of her work can be found at The Little Review.