…Humanity Falls… - yes it might be a little bit of a depressing title for a novel, but the 'dot dot dot' says it all. It is so much more than it seems and I have learnt that you should never underestimate J.J. Marshall.
This is the second instalment of Marshall’s brand new trilogy which is showing how humanity has evolved a mere 100 years in the future after an organism eats away our ozone, leaving Earth uninhabitable. Continuing on from When the World Ends… which was published last July, it finds Alec and the gang hiding from the ever more frightening Landon Corbett as he slowly rises to indisputable power. They begin to try and fight back, finding many friends along the way who want to help them try to regain control of their lives which Landon is putting under threat. It leads them to travel all over the Earth, which is a nice reprieve from the majorly space-orientated first book and Marshall uses this to depict the many differences to what everyone’s lives are like, depending on where they live.
The length might be quite off-putting to some – at just over 650 pages it is pretty hefty. But Marshall does not waste these extra words. He uses it to make all his characters more rounded than he managed to in the first one which was far more concentrated on action. Plus the moments of exciting conflict that it does include, are enjoyable and well balanced compared to the more explanatory sections.
This novel does start off slowly. But bear with him…action is not too far behind and when it does seep into the pages, it is unbelievably gripping. The last section in particular reaches a page turning climax that keeps you continuously unsure of what is going to happen next. The twisty turny nature of it, which was also prevalent in the first book, is what makes this novel such a blockbuster. And despite the fact that the plot keeps you guessing, what is much clearer is what a literary talent Marshall is fast becoming. Make sure you join him on this epic journey because it is pretty awesome! And I for one cannot wait for the conclusion that is yet to come.
Six Months Later…
In the wake of the Board of Officials’ attack on the London Sphere and the subsequent destruction of the city, Commander Lincoln of the U.S. New York Sphere openly declared war against the Board.
Almost overnight, the ISS and MoonBase1 fell under the now-fascist regime of the Board of Officials. Every initial uprising was crushed and the people fell into silent and unwilling order.
Before a counter-attack against the Board could be conducted, other Sphere Leaders called for an Alliance of Spheres on Earth and met to discuss the next steps. Whilst it was decided that they would unanimously declare war, they would not attack immediately and proceeded to gather intelligence in order to prepare.
In Space, President Cadmar Davies assembled the remainder of the Board of Officials: the disgraced Landon Corbett and last-surviving ‘loyalist’ Takeshi Sato. Together they decided they needed an army, but with the majority of the humans under their control resisting the call to arms, they concluded that compulsory conscription was needed. All men and woman over the age of eighteen were sent to MoonBase1; half of which had been converted into a training facility.
Soon after, the Board of Officials discovered that moles for Earth had been activated amongst their people. This, and much resistance from conscripted civilians, led the Board to take drastic action. Overseen by Mr. Sato, all conscripted civilians would be subjected to ‘cerebral scans’ – a process to eliminate spies in the eyes of the public. But in secret: a brainwashing programme to convert all conscripted civilians to their cause.
Presently, the programme is 45% complete with further ‘cerebral scans’ scheduled each day for the next four months. The Board of Officials decided that this would set their agenda: once their militarised, brainwashed army was ready they would go to war.
Landon Corbett is spiralling out of control.
From the wastelands of London to an isolated mountain village; from New York City to the International Space Station, Landon Corbett’s revenge knows no limits.
Alec is at the heart of the war that now rages between the two factions of humanity. Caught in the middle, he no longer holds the key to peace –Alec is the key to peace. Landon Corbett wants him dead and the Alliance of Spheres on Earth is only too happy to hand him over for the chance to save their own lives.
But from those with corrupt morals to those with hearts of passion and gratitude, Alec and his friends are given the chance to fight one more time. And after six months, the war is reaching its climax. There is only one resolution to stopping the Board of Officials: cut the head off the snake and kill Landon Corbett. But he remains as elusive and dangerous as ever.
Alec, Jonah, Sky, Jay and Trent have suffered terrible losses, but the biggest loss is yet to come and it will leave none of them untouched.