cover image Six Wakes

Six Wakes

Mur Lafferty. Orbit, $15.99 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-316-38968-6

Lafferty (The Shambling Guide to New York City) takes readers aboard an ill-fated colony ship crewed by criminals in this taut science fiction thriller. Ecological collapse and social and political upheaval have convinced humans to colonize another world: the Earth-like planet Artemis, orbiting Tau Ceti. The ship Dormire carries 2,000 cryo-sleeping colonists and a crew of six clones with criminal pasts who are hoping to build new lives with clean slates. But nearly 25 years into the mission, the crew awaken in the middle of a bloody crime scene. One of them—maybe more than one—is a murderer, the ship is off course, the ship’s AI is offline, all records have been deleted, and there’s no way to communicate with Earth. As suspicions and hostilities rise, it’s not certain who, or what, will survive. Interleaving urgent scenes with telling flashbacks, Lafferty delivers a tense nail-biter of a story fueled by memorable characters and thoughtful worldbuilding. This space-based locked-room murder mystery explores complex technological and moral issues in a way that’s certain to earn it a spot on award ballots. (Jan.)