A History of What Comes Next

Tor.com. (Take Them to the Stars, Bk. 1). Feb. 2021. 301p. ISBN 9781250262066. $24.99. SF
Identical mother-and-daughter pairs have one directive over the last 99 generations: Take humanity to the stars. It is now 1945, and Mia has been tasked to get Wernher von Braun away from the Nazis and working for the United States rocket program. Her path out of Germany is laden with obstacles, not the least the truth about why she and her mother Sarah left Germany in the first place. Now Mia is asking questions, her mother is trying to keep her on their path of guiding humanity, and they are trying to stay steps ahead of the mysterious Tracker, the monster set to destroy everything they have worked for. Neuvel (The Test) showcases meticulous research through his worldbuilding, highlighted by his own notes and references at the end. A highly crafted and unique look at the space race, through the eyes of those who exist only to ensure its success.
VERDICT Neuvel’s intriguing first-contact story is set through centuries of manipulation and pursuit. It’s a promising start to what looks to be a dark and exciting trilogy.
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