What if you have half a second to stop the extinction of part of the human race? What if that pivotal instant involves you saving your own life but first you have to believe an undiplomatic liaison of a colony of Earth inhabitants who lives in an altered future timeline.
Catherine, an environmental engineer, lives with the constant pressure that is an innate part of her research and advocacy work. She believes in protecting the environment, not only for her generation, but for the future. When her father dies unexpectedly she begins to battle with sleep deprivation. Sleep eludes her and when it does come, she finds herself repeatedly dreaming about standing on the same high plateau with her greyhound, Addy, surrounded by plants and animals and insects. In each dream the living landscape appears and then suddenly transforms into ash.
Keitha, an archivist who lives two hundred years in the future in an underground colony that is living with the consequences of past actions/inactions, stands on the plateau with her dog Murphy. Keitha has no time for Catherine's doubts. She knows that Catherine holds the key to stopping the Machiavellians from changing an event that shifts Earth's future timeline, resulting in the extinction of Keitha's colony.
Catherine's belief in the Hau de no sau nee (Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy) principal that we have to consider the effect decisions have on descendants seven generations into the future is put to the ultimate test when she learns that 'the event' is her own death. In order to stop it, Catherine must walk directly into its path.
This book speaks truly to the heart. Full of facts and information, ye staying true to its fictional setting, Dudley's story is a warning to us all.
I loved the character of Keitha. She was head-strong, vivid and realistic. I could imagine clearly what she would do in different situations. The personalities of the dogs were also captivating, with their unique place within this tale.
Various classic science-fiction and time-traveling notions are woven within this story, and yet Dudley somehow manages to keep it fresh and new. Complicated issues and paradoxes are never ignored, nor are they explained by fanciful inventions. Instead they are noted and skillfully become points for the characters themselves to discuss and debate.
I very much enjoyed this book. A must for all those interested in the future.