It’s May 30, 1978 and a normal night at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah–until a bogey shows up in their air space. It gets even stranger when the UFO requests permission to land, then changes its mind, but by then F-16s escort it to the ground. A human girl in her early teens and a robot exit the craft, a strange botanical lifeform found onboard later that night by a USAF landing party. The vehicle, robot, and the strange plant are impounded, then subsequently sent to Area 51.
NASA astrobiologist, Gabriel Greenley, PhD, is called in to study this new lifeform, which at first appears similar to a botanical species known as oxalis. As a psi-sensitive, Greenley quickly learns the specimen is highly intelligent and potentially dangerous when he attempts to take a leaf sample. He backs off, frustrated, desperate to investigate the scientific details of this new botanical species that combines intelligence with a metabolism based on photosynthesis. Meanwhile, the specimen, a flora peda telepathis named Thyron from the planet Sapphira, is investigating his new environment through all frequencies of the electro-magnetic spectrum to say nothing of his suite of psychic abilities, which includes remote viewing.
Greenley eventually gets his leaf sample, then makes a ground-breaking discovery that he can never share, due to his security oaths and research agreement at this Top Secret facility. Eventually, however, he’s confronted by an ethical dilemma that forces him to make a treasonous and potentially deadly decision.
A unique combination of hard science fiction, suspense, intrigue, and a touch of humor, this story has been described as a “dark version of ET: The Extraterrestrial.” Strong characterizations, a mysterious setting loaded with intrigue, and unexpected plot twists make this an unforgettable tale whether you’re a science fiction fan, botanist, UFO aficionado, or simply enjoy a good story.
[NOTE–“The Terra Debacle” is a standalone novel, but if you’ve read “A Dark of Endless Days,” you’ll recognize that this story originated there. While that volume of the tetralogy described what happened to Creena, if you’re curious regarding what Thyron and Aggie experienced, this will not only tell you, but introduce a few additional plot twists to be explored in later works.]
An Alien Lifeform
Dream Job Gone Bad
Recent Blog Reviews
Fox could not have selected more fertile ground for such a cross-genre romp. This is easily comparable to a dark version of ET – The Extraterrestrial, though the author herself evokes Little Shop of Horrors in her preface.
A highly entertaining, suspenseful and thought-provoking sci-fi novel surrounding the exploits of Thyron, a mutant form of sentient plant life with highly-developed thought processes and [un]limited extra-sensory perception.
The Star Trails Tetralogy was an essential indie lit sci-fi contribution, standing comfortably alongside Star Wars and Star Trek in the space opera genre. This novel takes us in a new direction as we consider not only the possibility of life in space, but that of being able to communicate and learn from it.
The story takes place in the ‘70s when I was a very young girl but I remember enough to suffer several fits of laughter while reading the story with the references to Mork, Star Trek and MASH. Among the laughter was plenty of suspense that built throughout. I was sweating bullets the last few chapters as the story climaxed. What an ending! What a story!
Marcha’s books always contain sound, plausible science. As a biology teacher I was in my element with the science presented in this book and the tests run. It’s very clever and I’m sure I will always think differently about plant chloroplasts and bulbs in the future.
A fantastic story that doesn’t miss a beat!
Thyron’s vegetable chauvinism makes him highly opinionated. He bristles at the nature of paper, he thinks lumber is a crime against botany, vegetarians are serial murderers, and a harvester is a weapon of mass destruction.
This is a brilliant story, extremely well written and with great character development. It is off-the-wall in a way that is similar to how Tom Robbins grabs the reader and shakes him. The research is profound and convincing. It is loosely aimed at the young adult audience, of which I am not a member; however, I recommend it for anyone who wants to venture into a leafy new world.
Story Excerpts on Bublish
Wholesale and Library Inquiries
eBooks: Axis-360, OverDrive, Gardners, Odilio, Library Direct