Tuesday 21 March 2023

The Earth-9 Colony Revisited - Manuel Alfonseca - Earth-9 Colony Book 2

The Earth-9 Colony Revisited
Earth-9 Colony Book 2
Manuel Alfonseca
ISBN 9798366887014

This is the fifteenth time I have read a book by Manuel Alfonseca, I have read a few more than once. I read book one when it was the month for the Goodreads Catholic Book Club. I was very thankful we read it as a group. For it is an excellent offering from Alfonseca’s skillful pen. The author in his own review of this volume states:

“When my book The History of the Earth-9 Colony was the reading of the month for the Catholic Book Club in September 2022, one of the readers asked me to write a sequel to that book. I thought the suggestion opportune, and immediately set about it. The result was this novel, which I wrote in less than two months and immediately translated into English.

This book picks up where the "History of the Earth-9 Colony" left off. In the same sci-fi setting, with interstellar travel, colonization of other planets, and encounters with extraterrestrial intelligences, the Earth-9 Colony continues to evolve after Kial's death. Like the first book in the series, the second part hides a double meaning that the reader must discover.

Like the first part of this series, this book is a space comedy in the etymological sense of the word, as in "The Divine Comedy." Indeed, "The Divine Comedy" is one of my main influences, as this work by Dante is my favorite fiction book of all time. You could say that this series of two novels is my "Divine Comedy," although much shorter and almost all in prose. The other main influence of this second part of the series is the History of Humanity, as can also be deduced from the titles of the chapters.”

In some ways this book holds a personal link, as I was one of the people wondering where the story would go next. And did it go far. In some ways it reads like 2000 years of church history, philosophy, and political history spread over 2 plants, 1 system, and 1 generation. It is a whirlwind of events. The author does his own translations into English as mentioned above. In some ways this tory felt like a race, the flagged was dropped and they story sped through to the end. I fell like it could have been spread over a few volumes. As it is it is incredibly densely packed. The chapters in the volume are:

1. Start of an empire
2. Fall of an empire
3. Stalemate
4. Reconquest and withdrawal
5. A new world
6. Reformation
7. Interstellar battle
8. Skepticism
9. Illustration
10. Revolution
11. Groucho and Joyful
12. Persecution and return
13. Totalitarianism
14. The abolition of man

Some sections of the book are personal reports or testimonies from various religious, military and political leaders. Some bragging of their success, and other of their failure and imminent death, including one suicide before capture. Other sections are conversations between various people, especially followers of the Unique and specifically Kialite’s. And there are interludes or insights where we get to see conversations between the different parts of the unique. These parts often end with: “So it will be.” and it being repeated. Thus, reminding me of Battlestar Galactica and the “So Say We All”

The description of the book is:

“This book starts where the "History of the Earth-9 Colony" left off. In a science-fiction setting involving interstellar travel, colonization of other planets and encounters with extraterrestrial intelligences, the Earth-9 Colony continues its evolution after Kial's death and the formation of the group of the Universal Kialites. Like the first book in the series, this second part contains a double meaning that the reader will have to discover, although it is not too difficult.”

This was another fascinating story from Alfonseca’s pen. I was hooked from beginning to end. I could hardly put the book down. Manual’s writing in this story is very intense. Alfonseca does his own translation work in this and other stories. This story has so much in it, I am certain some of the allusions to historical events or personalities were lost on me, but I did pick up on many of them. It is a very entertaining read. 

This is a good science fiction story, and I can easily recommend it, if you have read book 1, The History of the Earth-9 Colony.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2023 Catholic Reading Plan!

Books by Manuel Alfonseca in English:
Jacob's Ladder
The Ruby of the Ganges
The Last Dinosaur
Ennia in Faerie
The Heirloom of King Scorpion
Beyond the Black Hole
The Water of Life

Earth-9 Colony Series:

Solar System Series:
Under an Orange Sky

The Sleuths of the Spanish Transition Series:
Quetzalcoatl's Zahir

The Mystery of the Haunted House
The Mystery of the Sapphire Bracelet
The Mystery of the Honeymoon
The Mystery of the Egyptian Vulture Country House

Chronicles of the Magic Jigsaw Puzzle Series:
The Journey of Tivo the Dauntless
The Mystery of the Black Lake
The Silver Swan
The Secret of the Ice Field
The Lost Continent

The Chronicles of the Aeolian Family Series:

Human Cultures & Evolution
World Population: Past, Present, & Future
The Fifth Level of Evolution

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