A New Planet

Fiction - Science Fiction
432 Pages
Reviewed on 10/02/2020
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

A New Planet is a work of fiction in the science fiction, action, and adventure sub-genres, and was penned by author Todd M. Thiede. In this intense and thrilling adventure, we find a civilization on the brink of collapse, where three world leaders can’t help their in-fighting, even as they face the demise of the planet. But a new generation growing up in their shadows rises, sparking forbidden love and new upheavals of the political system to try to find a brighter tomorrow. As things begin to change, important questions arise about what caused the collapse in the first place, and whether human nature can really ever be truly saved from itself.

Author Todd M. Thiede has crafted a conceptually fascinating novel that will be sure to please fans of intellectual science fiction as well as those who enjoy dystopian adventures. One of the things which I particularly enjoyed about this work was the development of its social structures, class systems, and extended world-building, which make you feel as though the society is real and therefore gets you more and more involved in the events of the novel. The central trio of characters was very well developed, representing different areas of discovery and growth as disaster looms at every step. This makes for a really immersive world, and the pacing of the plot amps up nicely as it goes on to deliver a really satisfying novel as a whole. Overall, I would certainly recommend A New Planet to science fiction fans everywhere.

Susan Sewell

A supervolcano erupts in the northwestern hemisphere in the lower echelon of three planets, causing a mass evacuation before exterminating the remaining population. Relying on technology for oxygen and food, the other two arcologies' technological systems are unlikely to support the new influx of inhabitants for long. While a council made of three powerful families searches for a solution, a political demonstration gone wrong suffocates the occupants on the second planet, leaving no survivors. When trying to boost the biological system on the primary planet to support the remaining populace indefinitely, a miscalculation triggers an explosion that disintegrates all three planets. The surviving citizens flee in their ships to search for a new world to support them. However, when a planetary system suitable for sustaining life is discovered, based on their current history, the council members can't agree on a strategy in regards to the use of engineering science in the new government. Unable to reconcile their differences, they separate their people between two planets, and two different ecological systems are implemented. Will one or both succeed? Or will they make the same mistakes again, resulting in the annihilation of their race?

A New Planet by Tod. M. Thiede is an intriguing science fiction novel depicting the breakdown of a highly advanced technological society. Realistically developed, the story world and its citizens are vivid and lifelike. The theories and insights into what actions or events contribute to the collapse of civilizations threads its way through the plot, creating a thought-provoking as well as an entertaining aspect to this captivating story. Filled with avarice, romance, action, and adventure, A New Planet by Tod. M. Thiede is a stunning story that is sure to delight science fiction aficionados from young adults on up.

Rabia Tanveer

A New Planet by Todd M. Thiede is a story of survival and fighting for what is right. Jae Xiao and Tal Fisk love each other and want to spend the rest of their lives together. While Tal has to work around the burden of being a Fisk, Jae has to find her path. Both have a lot of responsibilities, but they are overshadowed by a huge crisis. A supervolcano has blown up and the leaders have to work harder than ever to protect everyone. However, Tal and Jae have bigger responsibilities as the children of leaders. The fate of so many people falls on them and they have to make some necessary and difficult decisions. The lives of countless people rely on the governance of the leaders. While everyone is scrambling to make sense of the chaos, is there any way to protect innocent lives? Or is everyone going to perish?

A New Planet is a heavily political science fiction novel. Todd M. Thiede has managed to add romance, survival, technology, and even social imbalance into the story. There are multiple subplots, multiple characters and each of them serves a purpose. Tal and Jae’s story is enough to capture the reader's attention; however, it is Leader Xiao who had my attention from the very beginning. He is a kind man (perhaps too kind for a politician), he makes sound decisions and thinks about the whole picture. Bastien, on the other hand, is a very hard character to like. While his intentions are good, the execution of them does not sit right with me. However, I understood him much better as the story progressed. For me, the unsung hero of the story was Seth and his team. They work harder than most to save the planet and protect people. This is a perfect amalgamation of different genres to create a cohesive and engaging story. The pace is fast enough to keep the reader entertained while the jump between POVs keeps the story interesting. The concept is very interesting and the execution is brilliant. This is a must-read novel for readers who enjoy science fiction with plenty of action.

Asher Syed

A New Planet by Todd M. Thiede brings its readers to a dystopian front where the sustainability of human life in post-Earth new planetary colonies are at the end of their tether. A supervolcanic eruption is the first domino in a line of cataclysmic events that push forward and pulse with a rippling effect on surrounding planets and moons. There are lessons to be learned in societies where technology has been created to mass build, run, and support nearly every aspect of life on Hongse, Lan Se, and Lan Se Moon, all with alarming outcomes. The narrative is in the third-person and is character-rich, which makes an unlikely romance, the dogged adherence to an unequal social system, and the drive for 'faster, stronger, smarter, easier' is showcased through the eyes of the privileged class and baseborn alike.

A New Planet is full of stunts and surprises. The novel is an ambitious undertaking by Todd M. Thiede and its weight is given occasional levity with whimsical dialogue, sometimes from unexpected characters: “Well, nobody said that building a world was going to be easy.” Another aspect that is refreshing is to find a decent headcount of good, strong, intelligent female protagonists. It's the next generation rising above the restrictions implemented by the past. There's a particular scene where a young woman named Saki is pointing out the dangers of technological dependency and she is dismissed outright with some “mansplaining”. I also liked that these young protagonists made up their own minds about love that dangled on a branch higher or lower than themselves. There is very little rehashing of run-of-the-mill science fiction plotting and sub-plotting, making A New Planet a pleasant gateway book to a reader who might be new to the genre.

Jamie Michele

A New Planet by Todd M. Thiede is a science fiction story where the precarious sustainability of life in a dystopian future gets pushed toward near collapse. A crushing blow resulting in casualties beyond comprehension on Lan Se forces the antiquated system of another planet to reconstruct in an effort to support the millions who were saved, and those of Hongse and its moon. Air and water are in short supply, quantities that are unsustainable even without the strain on existing resources and technology. The political structure is complex and comprised of a blend of AI and humans, working for and against one another in a hierarchy reminiscent of a caste system and teetering between a construct of plutocracy and Social Darwinism. A generational divide is on the rise with younger members of ruling class families riding a wave of change in an intense pursuit for equality.

Todd M. Thiede does an excellent job of world-building with A New Planet. The potential connection of a ruling class member sabotaging two major ecosystems adds to a plot of political intrigue that unfolds through multiple characters, all of whom are exceptionally well drawn out. There is an eerily familiar quality to Thiede's depiction of the ideology of the elders and the desire of their children to dig up and destroy the deep roots of oppression. This is portrayed through the relationship of Tal and Jae, Tal being at the very top of the totem pole and his parents already having his future mapped according to traditional practice and standards. Despite opposition, the pair prove themselves to be critical in the formulation of a forward-thinking approach to the timeless fight between what is acceptable and what is right. “It’s never been done. It shouldn’t be done, and yet it’s the only thing that can be done.” I think this book will resonate well with those readers who enjoy classic science fiction with political thrills and a dash of romance.