Ringturn is a science fiction novel by British Author John C Mawson. A number of people are abducted from earth during the time of the black death by alien forces and repopulated on a planet orbiting Epsilon Eridani, eleven light years from Earth.
Slowly those frightened humans build a new civilisation on their new home, and their time on earth becomes myth.
The society is controlled by religious leaders who restrict any form of advanced research or technology, however one very curious scientist, Giles Fitzgerald is keen to learn of his people's real origins and to this end creates a communications device to send a message to the cosmos, which costs him his life. His son is forced to flee into exile to escape the clutches of the church.
Meanwhile the earth of the late 21st century is a very different place, after a cataclysmic event that has seen the end to the USA as a nation, and a reformed Europe. Dr Harman makes a breakthrough by creating a Zero Point Energy device capable of providing an almost limitless supply of clean energy.
Eventually this Zero Point Energy is used to power near light speed space-flight and a team set off towards that message on Epsilon Eridani.
Ringturn is a well paced novel that manages to engage the reader and keep the interest going with a few good surprises, the novel has a nice way of keeping you hooked into the story. The alien locations are very well realised with a great level of detail that manages to portray an adapted civilisation on a completely alien world. There are also some very interesting ideas in the form of zero point energy and extra dimensions of space which may not be completely new, are told in an intelligent manner.
Intelligent and very well written, Ringturn is a very enjoyable read, a novel that I have no hesitation in recommending.
Written on Thursday 1st October 2009 by Antony.
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