Set on a foreign planet, Vanished Birds begins by telling the tale of Kaeda. Kaeda falls in love with Nia at age 7. There is only one problem. She is an alien from an alternate timeline where Earth lays dead. Unfortunately, she visits Kaeda’s planet only once every fifteen years from his perspective—but only eight months have passed for Nia. Kaeda tells the story of how he ages while she stays in her thirties.
Then one day a ship crashes on Kaeda’s planet with only one survivor. Kaeda is eighty-two but asks Nia to take the young boy back to the center hub of the universe on her ship. Nia agrees. On her ship, Captain Nia and the boy bond. But soon outside forces become interested in the boy. Will Nia be able to protect him?
I loved the beautiful prose within Vanished Birds. The entire novel reads like a barely remembered dream or a forgotten but well-loved fable. The plot is masterful as well. It’s literary fiction dressed in a hard science fiction shell. The nature of family and capitalism are both explored within this marvelous book. It is hard to believe this is a debut novel.
Even though Vanished Birds is not my usual thriller read, it is still one of my favorite stories this year. It is highly recommended. 5 stars!
Thanks to Del Rey Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.