Planetfall, the first stand-alone novel in the Planetfall sequence

Planetfall is a standalone science-fiction novel published by Roc.

From Emma Newman, the award-nominated author of Between Two Thorns, comes a novel of how one secret withheld to protect humanity’s future might be its undoing…

Renata Ghali believed in Lee Suh-Mi’s vision of a world far beyond Earth, calling to humanity. A planet promising to reveal the truth about our place in the cosmos, untainted by overpopulation, pollution, and war. Ren believed in that vision enough to give up everything to follow Suh-Mi into the unknown.

More than twenty-two years have passed since Ren and the rest of the faithful braved the starry abyss and established a colony at the base of an enigmatic alien structure where Suh-Mi has since resided, alone. All that time, Ren has worked hard as the colony’s 3-D printer engineer, creating the tools necessary for human survival in an alien environment, and harboring a devastating secret.

Ren continues to perpetuate the lie forming the foundation of the colony for the good of her fellow colonists, despite the personal cost. Then a stranger appears, far too young to have been part of the first planetfall, a man who bears a remarkable resemblance to Suh-Mi.

The truth Ren has concealed since planetfall can no longer be hidden. And its revelation might tear the colony apart…

What other people have said about Planetfall

“Planetfall is gripping, thoughtful science fiction in the vein of Tiptree or Crispin. Emma Newman has crafted a story that turns inward on itself in a beautiful spiral; the written equivalent of the golden mean. I have been waiting for this book for a very long time.”

—Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author of A Red-Rose Chain

“You’ve never read a science fiction book like this. A masterful study of mental illness, with the ruins of an enigmatic alien race serving as therapist for one of the most unsparingly drawn fictional characters you’ll ever read.”

—Melinda M. Snodgrass, screenwriter, author of the Edge series

“Newman has crafted a thrilling tale of murder, mystery and madness on a world where humanity is still its own worst enemy. Horrifying and heartbreaking in equal measure, the catastrophe driving this narrative will keep you riveted until the very last page. Don’t miss this one.”

—Kameron Hurley, author of the The Mirror Empire

“We have a destiny waiting for us among the stars, and now it’s calling to us. A great genre debut, and beautifully written: an unfolding alien mystery, and complex, utterly believable characters. You will want to believe.”

—Stephen Baxter, National Bestselling Author of Ultima

“Filled with wonders, revelations, and edge-of-the-seat suspense, Planetfall is a fascinating, heartbreaking exploration of love and loneliness set against an awe-inspiring backdrop. An instant classic of the genre.”

—Gareth L. Powell, BSFA Award-winning author of Ack-Ack Macaque

Early reviews

It's early days so there are only a few reviews (that I know of anyway!).

Publisher's Weekly gave Planetfall a starred review.

Review of Planetfall

And that review on the left is from RT magazine!

Michaela Gray reviewed Planetfall for Geek Syndicate - Read the full review

Planetfall is a brilliantly gripping psychological study of the ties that bind a diverse community together, of spirituality and science, love, loss, and the price of keeping up a pretence over a long period of time. Slowly unfurling its layers of lies until the worm in the bud is revealed, Planetfall is a story to be slowly savoured, a sublime mix of science fiction and faith. This is what Prometheus wishes it was.
Planetfall confirms Newman as one of the most versatile, talented and thoughtful voices currently in science fiction and fantasy. I can’t wait to see what she does next.

And Jane Hanmer reviewed it on her blog too. Read the full review here.

This novel left me bruised and heartsore. It is about love and grief as well as power and lies. I loved it, you need to put this on your to read list now.

David reviewed Planetfall and you can see the full review at his Blue Book Balloon blog

Brilliantly written, haunting in places, with a constant narrative drive, this is the best science fiction I've read for a long time. Above all, Ren is a magnificent and magnificently written character who Newman does an excellent job of making real. When I arrived at my Tube station with 20 odd pages of this book left, I simply had to stand there on the platform, let myself be late, for work and finish it.

I think you'd want to do the same.

Where you can buy it

So, if this sounds like your kind of book, here are the places where you can buy it. I'm dividing into US and UK readers for the sake of ease, if you live outside of the US and UK I'm guessing that Amazon and The Book Depository would be your first ports of call.

There is also an audio book version, narrated by yours truly. That's available in the States at Audible.

In the US


Barnes & Noble

Books A Million

Hudson Booksellers





In the UK

Forbidden Planet (signed copies available!)

Books on the Hill bookshop

Topping Books

Mr B's Emporium of Reading Delights


The Book Depository