5 Stars! “What a fantastic book by Jade Kerrion, it grabbed me from the very first page...Ms Kerrion's writing is exciting and well paced to keep you wanting to know more…”
Jem Moran has a reputation to prove and a secret to protect. The prestigious world simulation program seems the answer to both her problems, but only if she can succeed in spite of her partner, Kir Davos, and the uncooperative human beings who populate her planet. From the Great Extinction to the Renaissance, from world wars to intergalactic treaties, Jem’s conflict with Kir will shape Earth’s history, and their opposing management styles will either save or doom our planet. Either way, you finally have someone to blame for the shape our world is in.
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Author: Jade Kerrion
Jade Kerrion unites cutting-edge science and bioethics with fast-paced action in her award-winning Double Helix series. Perfection Unleashed and its sequels, Perfect Betrayal and Perfect Weapon, have been described as “a breakout piece of science fiction” and drawn rave reviews for their originality and vision. Her novel, When the Silence Ends, is a Young Adult spinoff the Double Helix series. She is also the author of Earth-Sim, a whimsical and compelling view of Earth’s history through the eyes of the two students assigned to manage our planet.
Can you find the pop culture references in Earth-Sim?
Jem Moran is a college student with a reputation to prove and a secret to protect. The prestigious world simulation program seems the answer to both her problems, but only if she can succeed in spite of her teammate, Kir Davos.
The premise of Earth-Sim sounds simple enough, right?
But I wanted more Earth-Sim to be more than just a story about Jem, her challenges, and her secrets. I wanted it to be a story about humans too, in all our foibles, our courage and our weaknesses, and most of all, our ingenuity and resilience. Earth-Sim showcases Earth’s history in a seamless blend of popular culture, science, and religion. Fact and fiction fit together into a jigsaw puzzle, sometimes called out clearly, at other times nestled into a single passing comment in a dialogue.
What were the sources of the puzzle pieces? Many puzzle pieces are built upon Earth’s history, both the planet’s geological history and the history of human civilization. I also drew extensively from religion, mythology, and popular culture.
Here are examples of the puzzle pieces you can expect to find:
- The extinction of the dinosaurs
- The cascading effect of the ten plagues of Egypt
- The rise and fall of ancient empires
- Geographical wonders like the Nazca lines in Peru
- Mythical creatures like the Loch Ness Monster
- The city of Atlantis, and why it was destroyed
- The title of a book by Pulitzer Prize winner, Jared Diamond
- The kamikaze, the “divine wind” that saved Japan from two Mongol naval invasions
- The transformative power of the Renaissance
- Galactic empires and superheroes drawn from popular comic series
- The title of a New York Times Bestseller by David Fromkin
- Stuxnet, the computer worm that attacked Iran’s nuclear facilities
- The real purpose of the mysterious manuscripts, like the Voynich Manuscript
All of these and more are explained through the eyes of Jem Moran, Kir Davos, and SimOne—the two students and the android assigned to manage the planet Earth. Though presented as a whimsical and often irreverent romp through the history of Earth and its connection with the universe, Earth-Sim is a treasure trove of real information. You may recognize most of the references, but if there’s something you don’t recognize that you think might actually be a historical event or a pop culture reference, you can check Google or Wikipedia, or just send me a note…
Either way, you finally have someone to blame for the shape our world is in.
1 eCopy of Earth-Sim by Jade Kerrion. Enter via Rafflecopter, must be 13 & able to download winnings. All my rules under the About tab apply.
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Excerpt from Earth-Sim:
The world’s a crazy place, isn’t it? Massive floods, deadly plagues, world wars…it makes you wonder, who’s in charge of this place anyway? Let me introduce you to Jem Moran, Kir Davos, and SimOne—the two students and android assigned to manage Earth.
Earth-Sim seamlessly blends popular culture with history, science, and religion. This whimsical and irreverent romp through the history of Earth will charm and entertain as you attempt to decipher just how much is fact and what else is fiction. Either way, you finally have someone to blame for the shape our world is in.
This particular scene, which includes Kir’s younger brother, Kav, showcases the source of the kamikaze, the “divine wind” that saved Japan from two Mongol invasions, and the origin of the Black Death.
“Did we ever hear back from the Shixar or the Atlante teams?” Jem asked as they walked into the simulation laboratory together.
“No, it’s been quiet. It helps to be a little backwater planet. The Shixar and Atlante are so busy fighting each other on the other side of the universe that we’ve been able to escape their notice. It also helps that we’re technologically primitive. No one wants the hassle of raising toddlers if they can help it. All right, Kav. Remember, hands behind your back. Don’t touch anything.”
“Got it.” Kav laced his fingers behind his back. His eyes were wide, and his head swiveled from side to side as he tried to take in everything.
“It looks like lots of teams are back,” Jem murmured, nodding to another student who passed by them on his way to his own planet.
“I think many teams didn’t even take the week off,” Kir said.
Jem snorted. “Now I feel like a slacker.”
“On the other hand, I feel like I’m giving up two weeks of my vacation, and I’m moderately resentful about it.” Their planet came into view. “Good morning, SimOne.”
“Good morning, Kir. Good morning, Jem. Good morning, Kav.”
“How are things going?” Kir asked.
“Well,” was the android’s succinct reply.
“Let me see. Let me see.” Kav stood over the planet, his fingers interlocked behind his back, and stared down at the blue-white world spinning serenely in space. “Is that the moon?” he asked, as something brushed by his head.
Kir nodded. “Yes, and step back. You’re in its orbital path.”
“What’s that stuff down there?” Kav asked.
Jem leaned in over his shoulder. Her eyes narrowed. “It looks like a fleet of ships.”
Kir leaned in too. “That you can see from up here? That’s got to be a lot of ships.” He whistled low. “I’ve never seen these many ships. It will probably go down in history as the largest naval assault to date.”
“It isn’t going to bode well for that island,” Jem said.
“You’re not intervening?” Kir asked, sounding surprised.
“No. Both countries are somewhat peripheral to my plans. Contrary to what you may think about me, I don’t make every single decision for them. I step in only where it matters.”
Kav suddenly sneezed.
The fleet of ships vanished beneath the violent exhalation of air that tore up the waves. “Oh, no…” Jem choked back a giggle.
“Kav!” Kir shouted.
“Cover your nose!”
Fascinated, Jem watched in silence as more ships sailed forth from the mainland; the armada reformed. They were going at it again.
Kav wailed. “I can’t cover my nose. See! My hands are behind my back. I can’t cover my nose with my hands behind my back.”
“Use your hands, damn it,” Kir said.
“You told me not to use my hands in here. I’m gonna sneeze again…I’m gonna…AH CHOO!”
The fleet dissipated. It never reformed.
Jem covered her mouth, the muffled sound trapped between a chortle and a sob. “Oh, God, I can’t watch.”
“Stand all the way back here.” Kir physically picked up his brother and moved him out beyond the asteroid field. “Jem, are you okay?”
She swallowed the chuckle. “It’s so bad. I thought that we’d figured out the art of planetary management, but no, we’re still careening from crisis to crisis.”
“You don’t sound or look mad,” Kir said carefully.
“I’m not. I’m resigned.” She giggled again. “Just imagine how the events must have seemed to that country. A massive armada shows up on your shores, and suddenly, bad weather takes it down. A few years later, another armada shows up, but once again, it’s consumed by bad weather. If that’s not a divine wind, nothing else is.”
“You’re taking this better than I thought you would.”
“Practice,” Jem said with a straight face.
SimOne cut into their easy banter. “Alert. An alien vector was inserted at 35°N, 103°E”
“What?” Jem turned sharply back to SimOne.
“Where did it come from? Who inserted it?” Kir asked.
SimOne stood very straight; she stared at something apparently only she could see. “It came from Kav Davos.”
“Get it out,” Kir ordered.
“Negative. The alien vector cannot be removed.”
“Track it, then. I want to know where it goes. What is it? A humanoid?” Kir asked.
“Negative. It is an enterobacteriaceae.”
“Damn it.” Jem paled. “Give me a population map, SimOne.”
The world map unfurled across the astral screen. The disease spread, flowing out of the heart of Jem’s empire, toward the west and south. Dark patches faded, thinning out, sometimes disappearing completely.
“Oh, my God…” Jem whispered. “They’re dying. They’re dying all over.”