Terra Non Firma (Cosmic Horizon Book 1)


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All hotels in Vancouver Restaurants 4, Hotels 91 Things to Do 1, Things to Do. Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. The Gone World by Tom Sweterlitsch. Inception meets True Detective in this science-fiction thriller of spellbinding tension and staggering scope.

The Gone World follows a special agent into a savage murder case with grave implications for the fate of mankind.


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In Western Pennsylvania, , she is assigned to sol Inception meets True Detective in this science-fiction thriller of spellbinding tension and staggering scope. In Western Pennsylvania, , she is assigned to solve the murder of a Navy SEAL's family - and to locate his teenage daughter, who has disappeared. Though she can't share the information with conventional law enforcement, Moss discovers that the missing SEAL was an astronaut aboard the spaceship U. Libra - a ship assumed lost to the darkest currents of Deep Time.

Moss knows first-hand the mental trauma of time-travel and believes the SEAL's experience with the future has triggered this violence. Determined to find the missing girl and driven by a troubling connection from her own past, Moss travels ahead in time to explore possible versions of the future, seeking evidence or insight that will crack the present-day case. To her horror, the future reveals that it's not only the fate of a family that hinges on her work, for what she witnesses rising over time's horizon and hurtling toward the present is the Terminus: the terrifying and cataclysmic end of humanity itself.

Carl Sagan

Luminous and unsettling, The Gone World bristles with world-shattering ideas yet remains at its heart an intensely human story. Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 1. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Gone World , please sign up. This question contains spoilers… view spoiler [Did anyone else think the epilogue was the best part? Courtney was the greatest character we only heard about and rarely saw, except for a simulacra in a future hotel.

I felt like the story should have started with Courtney and Shannon's lives and revisited it throughout the book in flashbacks until the end. The structure of the book was uneven without this. The other characters seem like actors playing roles Kyri Freeman This answer contains spoilers… view spoiler [ I just finished the book and hated the epilogue despite having loved the book up until then. The happy ending is this sexist thing where the formerly …more I just finished the book and hated the epilogue despite having loved the book up until then.

The happy ending is this sexist thing where the formerly strong female character is happy to stay home waiting for this guy who was presented earlier as basically lame? Maybe the author's idea was that it was a flawed ending that would end up in a banal, maybe abusive, relationship, but there's not really a hint of that. Really, up to that point it was some of the best SF I've read in a very long time. This question contains spoilers… view spoiler [Is there a diagram showing the echoes of Shannon relative to the plot events?

Brian S This answer contains spoilers… view spoiler [ There are only three versions of Shannon we encounter: Shannon 1. Shannon 2. See all 5 questions about The Gone World…. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Aug 14, Kevin Kelsey rated it it was amazing Shelves: read , favorites , read-it-again.

I found The Gone World at my local library bookshop and had no idea what I was getting myself into, in the best way. Reading it split my head clean open. From the first page to the last, I was enthralled. It completely blindsided me. Several years ago the visual artist Ward Shelley created a piece chronicling the history of science fiction. He began with the roots of the genre: Fear and Wonder, Speculation and Observation, and traced them down through Philosophy and Cultural Criticism all the way to our current moment, marking notable works along the way.

These disparate lineages, one born of Fear, the other of Wonder, branch out into genres and sub-genres, staying mostly separate. Sometimes the mystery is a little too obvious, or the characters are as translucent as the paper in a cheap paperback. Worst of all is when the story gets bogged down by the science and it becomes more of a textbook than a novel.

It works surprisingly well as both science fiction and a modern mainstream suspense thriller. The SF aspects help the story to avoid the tropes of suspense thrillers and vice versa, each genre serving to make up for the possible shortcomings of the other. Think the horrific existential dread of Lovecraft or Robert Chambers , that so obviously inspired the first season of True Detective , filtered through Arthur C. Mysteries in mysteries in mysteries, and they all resolve pretty well.

In addition to this, Sweterlitsch co-wrote several of those incredible Oats Studios short films that Blomkamp directed last year. It's been recently announced that Blomkamp's next film will be a direct sequel to the original Robocop, which makes me worried his adaptation of The Gone World may be on the back burner for now.

Only time will tell. The Gone World gut-punched my head over and over again, which is enough to solidify my interest in everything that Sweterlitsch does from here on out. View all 4 comments. Okay, so I finished this last night but had to gather my thoughts before writing this review. Because the book is one of those that you can talk about for hours with others - both while reading it discussing theories, puzzling about where the author will take this and after finishing it to see if it means the same to you as to other readers.

The story centers around an NCIS investigator, who tries to solve several linked murder cases a family. It could be a jealous husband, a robbery, some Okay, so I finished this last night but had to gather my thoughts before writing this review. It could be a jealous husband, a robbery, some link to the Navy However, what makes this so intriguing and layered is that in this world time travel is possible.

Only forward and then back to Terra Firma the actual Here and Now , but still time travel! And space travel too the base for the time travel branch of the Navy is on the Moon. Anyway, investigators often jump around the time line to find clues and then solve a crime. This gets complicated by the fact that not too long ago, the Navy found out during one of the jumps that the end times an event called Terminus are near But is there a connection between Terminus and the murders?

If so, what is it? And will all those efforts to prevent Terminus actually work - can they?! Yes, one has to pay attention to which period the MC is currently in as well as how the events play out in order to get hints at who some characters are. It's not written in stone, which further complicates things. Nevertheless, although details are different, a few things stay the same, have a necessary common ground so to speak. And all this is just the set-up!

The rest of the book slowly unfolds several mysteries that are intricately intertwined; a very intelligent plot with several twists and turns. A few things were as I had expected them but there was always some detail that played out differently than anticipated and like I usually say: the journey is even more important than the final outcome. The writing style is also very enganging, with a host of unique characters that make you feel the entire range of emotions a human being is capable of feeling. Is anyone ever truly innocent? What defines "the good guys"? Every crime scene was laid out in detail so the reader becomes part of the investigative team while also being appalled or horrified.


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You can feel how much you're running out of time so there is NEVER a moment of rest, the story keeps throwing elements at you and you either sink or swim, getting completely drawn into these worlds. The atmosphere, especially in certain surroundings, had me on the edge of my seat or barricading myself with pillows, it was that creepy-good. I would have never even heard of this if it wasn't for Tyler voluntelling me to this buddy-read and although I will never officially admit it, I owe him because this has become one of my favourite books!

View all 35 comments. Jun 10, Bradley rated it it was amazing Shelves: fanboy-goes-squee , mindfuq , shelf , sci-fi , worldbuilding-sf. I honestly didn't expect this novel to be quite as hard-hitting as it turned out to be. From the opening passages, I was plunged into a nightmare future world of nanotech and some humanity-ending Cthulhu-esq horrorshow of humans hanging from trees, undying hoards of men and women running, insane, and us, time-travelers in a spacecraft, observing our own future end creeping up on us sooner and sooner and sooner.

This just blows me away. But right before it scares off the normals, I honestly didn't expect this novel to be quite as hard-hitting as it turned out to be. But right before it scares off the normals, the author backs us up and plants us firmly in a top-secret NCIS investigatory world that has time travel and deep-space spacecraft. And mundane murder on the world in the meantime. And the means to travel through time to help solve the sticklers. Time and multiverses work a bit differently than our run-of-the-mill time-travel stories. We deal with dark forests and multiple branches that loop back in on themselves but all tend to converge in truly horrific ways that are perfectly aligned to make us totally freak out Shadow worlds.

Popping bubbles of reality. Hopping and erasures and yet Am I squeeing? Yes, I am. But wait! I'm not just squeeing over the SF and Horror side of the novel. This will probably blow your mind. It's also a great thriller. Not just a truly excellent time-travel novel with a lot more than its fair share of surprises, twists and turns, but it's a full-on excellent modern thriller. Every little murder is a mystery within a mystery within a mystery, and it still has to lead to the meeting on other worlds with strange alien or time-like or nanotech or Dreamtime or Ragnarokian origins.

The author knows his craft. The characters. Shannon is awesomely deep and interesting in her own right. As a thriller it succeeds on all these little life-details across the board, perfectly separate from the SFnal and Horror bits. And most of the novel IS exactly this. I cannot see a universe in which this particular novel doesn't make it ultra-huge. I mean, it has all the elements and high-craft of a super-huge best-seller. As a genre-masher, it's perfectly mainstream and exciting and entirely in line with what people seem to WANT. And it excels at each part! No half-ass aspect anywhere.

Oh, hell yeah. View all 12 comments. Jan 13, Sylvain Neuvel rated it it was amazing. In a word: Whoa! Edge-of-your-seat crime fiction that bends both time and mind. Think True Detective meets 12 Monkeys. Throw in the end of the world and you can begin to imagine where this gut-twisting tale will take you. This is cross-genre fiction at its best. View 2 comments. On paper, her job is to investigate any criminal activities involving members of the US Navy or Marine Corps, but behind the scenes, her duties involve a whole lot more, including traveling through time to search for clues in a myriad of possible futures.

The main suspect is a former Navy SEAL, who Moss discovers, with some shock, was part of the Naval Space Command program, stationed aboard a spaceship assumed lost on a classified mission. Knowing how the stresses of traveling through space and time can push a person to the edge, Moss suspects a deeper connection. But for a while now, the NSC has also been aware of an event known as the Terminus, which will bring about the end of the world and all reality as we know it.

The date of the Terminus, however, is not set; every time Moss makes the jump to the future and returns to the present, she receives news that the Terminus has moved up a few more years, drawing ever closer. This novel is a sci-fi crime thriller with time travel thrown into the mix, so you just know the story will be a little wild.

Everything is connected somehow, and as readers, we must keep track of the times Moss travels to the future, how long she stays, the people she talks to, and the information she gleans. These are individuals brought back from the possible futures, doubling someone already living. The point though, is that The Gone World is a story of many different components, which Sweterlitsch juggles like a performer spinning plates on sticks, trying to keep them all up in the air and moving at once.


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Really dark. As much as I enjoyed this novel though, there are a few caveats. The story might have lost its hold on me at the end, crushed by the weight of its own ideas and growing a little too unwieldy for the plot structure to support.

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One can argue all that is secondary to the main story, but I think it would have helped to get at least some background on the secret NSC space program and the history of how time travel was ultimately achieved. But all in all, I enjoyed this. I liked following our compelling protagonist, watching all the pieces come together and sometimes get torn apart against a backdrop of drama, action, and thrilling suspense.

Audiobook Comments: Brittany Pressley was a wonderful narrator, successfully portraying a large cast of characters of different ages, different backgrounds, and different times. She used accents to great effect for several of them, creating a very immersive experience for the listener. She had a great voice for the book too, perfectly capturing its grim and dark tone. View all 6 comments. If there is one book that I feel inadequate to review, it's The Gone World, because it's so mind-blowing fascinating and sometimes a bit too much for my little brain to take it, but at least I think I grasped most of what was going on in the book.

Still, it's hard to review that left you with a feeling of exhausting, wonder and dread. Within two months of her arrival in Virginia Beach, she had time-traveled to the Terminus of humanity and sailed the farthest reaches of the Andromeda Galaxy, ba If there is one book that I feel inadequate to review, it's The Gone World, because it's so mind-blowing fascinating and sometimes a bit too much for my little brain to take it, but at least I think I grasped most of what was going on in the book.

The book is gorgeously written, and at first, there is a tiny feeling of hope in the story, despite, the gruesome murder, as we learn more about time travel, and all the wonders with it. Then, we learn about Terminus, the end of humanity, an end that is closing in faster and faster, from being a threat generations away to a threat that seems to move faster towards each day and you start to feel that humanity may be doomed that there will be no way to stop Terminus from happening.

The Gone World is a fabulous science fiction book and I felt a craving for more books like this after finishing it. I've always loved time travel, and I loved the idea of going forward to an "if" future to see back to how for instance a case would be solved, and then go back. It's not a new thought, but adding the Terminus, gives the book a sense of doom, a sense that nothing will, in the end, stop the end of humanity. There is hope, but will Shannon Moss, be able to figure out a way to stop Terminus? Or is she just fighting windmills?

I feel that part of me is still processing this book, despite that, I finished the book a couple of days ago. It's such an extraordinary book. I also loved how the author quoted August Strindberg, from the book The Ghost Sonata, as intro quotes for new parts in the book. Love details like that. Read it, or listen to the audiobook.

I have a tendency to do both when I have the chance, reading at home listening at work. Btw that's a great way to get some reading done when you don't have time.

Combine listening with reading. It used to be thought that hell was a lack of God, but hell is a lack of death. I want to thank G. Putnam's Sons for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review! View all 7 comments. Time travel, multiverse, murder mystery and horror weaved in a story about the end of humanity. TS created an original world, time travel is seen in a new light and the ouroboros cycle is masterfully used as a base theme.

I loved the theme, how the events unfolded, the journeys through the multiverse, the worldbuilding. And I hated the dark atmosphere and the violence of the killings. Too much violence for my taste. It was both a great and an oppressive reading and it felt this way mostly because we experience all first hand through the eyes of Shannon Moss, the main character. Nov 26, Cindy Burnett rated it really liked it Shelves: first-to-read. I am always intrigued with time travel, and I felt that the portion of the book dealing with that was fabulous.

Sweterlitsch clearly researched and thought through that concept and executed it very effectively. I felt I had to be hyperly focused on the book every time I read, or I would lose track of the various story lines. Overall, The Gone World is an interesting and original tale that you must be prepared to devote your entire attention to as you read it and not spread it over too many days.

It is also contains several fairly gory sections.

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I had to skip over those. Thanks to First to Read for my copy. All opinions are my own. Aug 19, Chris Berko rated it it was amazing. This will probably end up being my favorite read of the year. Right from the beginning I could tell I was going to like it. There are certain movies, for me ones like Reservoir Dogs, Boogie Nights, Memento, and Donnie Darko, where I knew before they even ended that they were going to be good, something special and that's what this book is like.

Awesome the whole way through and everything is explained in easy enough terms that if anyone else that I knew tried to explain to me what was going on I This will probably end up being my favorite read of the year. Awesome the whole way through and everything is explained in easy enough terms that if anyone else that I knew tried to explain to me what was going on I would look at them like they were crazy. This is truly a unique experience and exceeded my expectations in every way. View all 8 comments. I mention this first because The Gone World, being pretty high-concept sci-fi, is not the kind of novel that would have appeared on my radar otherwise.

Thankfully, Sweterlitsch is a first-rate storyteller, and though the plot is complex I found the narrative fascinating. One can only jump forward in time from their present day or 'terra firma', in Shannon's case — but not beyond the Terminus, 'the moment humanity ceases to be relevant'. Every timeline ends in the Terminus sooner or later, and, ominously, it's getting closer. The futures Shannon and other agents visit are only possibilities and may never happen in reality, but an agent might live for years in an 'IFT' inadmissible future trajectory. Shannon is tasked with solving the case, and is perturbed when she finds the crime took place in a house that used to belong to her childhood best friend.

The story has been described as 'Inception meets True Detective'; there's more than a little X-Files in there as well not least because Shannon watches the show and is a Scully fan. Boiled down to a sentence, it's a time-travel whodunnit so, Crime Traveller, basically.

The 'gone world' the title speaks of is not, as you might think, one of these IFTs, but Shannon's past, in particular the life she shared with her best friend Courtney Gimm before the latter's death at age sixteen. Touching the wall, she felt like she could tear the present world away and see her friend again, be with her friend as if no time had passed, as if she could step into the old bedroom, the gone world.

The device of grounding Shannon's motivation in Courtney's death works really well, both because it humanises the character and because it keeps bringing the story back to a recognisable context. No matter how outlandish the rest of it becomes, there's always this element of ordinary humanity.

It's safe to say The Gone World is outside my reading comfort zone, but this was a gamble that paid off. It's very well paced, and while everything was explained, I never felt like I was getting bogged down in the intricacies of how it all worked. Turns out, murder mystery and time travel go surprisingly well together. There's one thing I hated about it, though — the epilogue. I hated that epilogue so much I don't even know how to begin talking about it.

Let's pretend it never happened. I received an advance review copy of The Gone World from the publisher through Edelweiss. TinyLetter Twitter Instagram Tumblr View all 9 comments. Nov 15, Dave rated it it was amazing Shelves: edelweiss-books , penguin-first-to-read , goodreads-giveaway , read-have. The Gone World is a breathtaking journey of literary imagination. Beautifully written, deeply layered, and most importantly mind-boggling.

Indeed, there are infinite paths into infinite futures which becomes quite maddening. Richly textured, thought-provoking, detailed, and crazy-making, The Gone World is simply awesome. Many thanks to G.

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Putnam for a copy of the book for review. First spoiler-free review of ! Holy hell…what a way to start the New Year! And I generally tend to avoid books that everyone else seems to be reading at that time. And this one fits that bill, having come out a year ago and getting some solid accolades. As with all my reviews, I will attempt to keep spoilers to an absolute minimum. I truly despise major plot spoilers, and honestly feel that books and movies, and music, and… just have more impact and are more enjoyable when you go in without preconceived notions or expectations.

And with books like The Gone World where there are so many twists and discoveries and branching plot points, to make any mention of them would lessen the impact of the work as a whole. Though it is ostensibly a sci-fi novel though more speculative vs. You want some mystery and a little bit of whodunit action? Do you like both physical and psychological horror? Want a little romance sprinkled in amongst the mind-bending twists and turns? Tom Sweterlitsch has done a truly remarkable job of creating a completely unique tale, including creating his own fresh take on time-travel, which is one of the more perilous sci-fi notions for an author to tackle.

The Gone World is also equal parts plot driven AND character driven, and as such feels like a completely cohesive narrative, without any part getting subsumed by another. Though the narrative switches from third-person to first-person at times, she is the only POV character throughout the whole book.

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Fortunately, she is an engaging character, courageous and driven, but fallible and too trusting at times. I always have an easier time relating to characters who are depicted as imperfectly human, with human flaws and fears, instead of perfect Molly Sue characters with no inner conflict. Give me characters who grow, learn, make mistakes and then try again. Fortunately, Shannon is very much imperfect, but she refuses to give up.

But given the fact that she is a time-traveler for the Navy, she has to be mentally fit and flexible, as time-travel in this story can cause severe psychological strain. Even with that mental fortitude, Shannon has a bit of world-weariness that I always gravitate to with protagonists. I feel a certain sort of kinship with people who still do the right thing, even though they may be exhausted and near the end of their rope. Death is an unshared intimacy, Moss would sometimes think, finding a center of calm in the science of the morgue.

Death and loss close company for her, her best friend dead, her father gone. Each supporting character stands out, and they are all part of the narrative for a reason. Nobody is included just for color, and I admire the fact that Tom Sweterlitsch obviously gave each character a lot of thought beyond their basic characteristics.

Nobody here is superhuman. Like most good storytellers, Tom Sweterlitsch understands that the biggest monsters can be people, especially the people we least expect. In fact, there is no going to the past in The Gone World. There is no design. The universe is vast and indifferent to our desires. One of the things that Tom Sweterlitsch absolutely knocks out of the park is how he brings all of the divergent plot threads together. Some of the converging plot points can be a little convoluted, so this is absolutely a book that you need to pay attention to.

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