An alien race calls on one woman to revive mankind after Earth’s apocalypse in this science fiction classic from the award-winning author of Parable of the Sower.
Lilith Iyapo has just lost her husband and son when atomic fire consumes Earth—the last stage of the planet’s final war. Hundreds of years later Lilith awakes, deep in the hold of a massive alien spacecraft piloted by the Oankali—who arrived just in time to save humanity from extinction. They have kept Lilith and other survivors asleep for centuries, as they learned whatever they could about Earth.
Now it is time for Lilith to lead them back to her home world, but life among the Oankali on the newly resettled planet will be nothing like it was before. The Oankali survive by genetically merging with primitive civilizations—whether their new hosts like it or not. For the first time since the nuclear holocaust, Earth will be inhabited. Grass will grow, animals will run, and people will learn to survive the planet’s untamed wilderness. But their children will not be human. Not exactly.
Featuring strong and compelling characters and exploring complex themes of gender and species, Octavia E. Butler presents a powerful, postapocalyptic interplanetary epic, as well as a ray of hope for humanity.
“One of [Butler’s] finest achievements.” —Junot Díaz
“Clear-headed and brutally unsentimental. . . . If you haven’t read Butler, you don’t yet understand how rich the possibilities of science fiction can be.” —Fantasy & Science Fiction
“Butler’s strength is her ability to create complex and believable characters.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“Her books are disturbing, unsettling . . . her visions are strange hypnotic distortions of our own uncomfortable world.” —LA Style
About the Author
Octavia E. Butler (1947–2006) was a bestselling and award-winning author, considered one of the best science fiction writers of her generation. She received both the Hugo and Nebula awards, and in 1995 became the first author of science fiction to receive a MacArthur Fellowship. She was also awarded the prestigious PEN Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000. Her first novel, Patternmaster (1976), was praised both for its imaginative vision and for Butler’s powerful prose, and spawned four prequels, beginning with Mind of My Mind (1977) and finishing with Clay’s Ark (1984).
Although the Patternist series established Butler among the science fiction elite, it was Kindred
(1979), a story of a black woman who travels back in time to the antebellum South, that brought her mainstream success. In 1985, Butler won Nebula and Hugo awards for the novella “Bloodchild,” and in 1987 she published Dawn
, the first novel of the Xenogenesis trilogy, about a race of aliens who visit earth to save humanity from itself. Fledgling
(2005) was Butler’s final novel. She died at her home in 2006.