On June 11, 3062: decedents from an Earth colony, land on Earth with the message “We come in hope and in peace, we have found our way home.”
Other Systems is the story of the young healthy immigrants to the planet Kipos, while the second novel, The Light Side of the Moon is about those who were left behind. Though Ellie was too young to go to Kipos, the Kiposians changed the trajectory of her life forever.
Character dossier of Ellie Sethdottier
Ella (Ellie) Settdottier was four-years-old when the Kiposians came. While she and her brothers were too young to immigrate to Kipos and witnessed a violent argument between her parents, which ended with her mother battered. She never saw her father again. She does not know if he abandoned them for opportunities on Kipos or was possibly killed at the gates. She doesn’t want to know.
Age in novel: 4 – 18
Parents: Jia Rao and Seth Keithson
Brothers: Daniel (+4 years) and James (+3 years)
The Good: Though her life has been hard, she was protected from the worst of their poverty by her older brothers, thus she is strong-willed and hopeful things will get better. (Her brothers have long given up on life.) She loves to read and collect knowledge.
The Bad: She has grown up so fast, she does not listen to reason. She is slow to trust.
A rather helpful bad: She is a risk taker, but she is terrified of “getting in trouble” in some nebulous unforgivable way. She doesn’t really understand what is unforgivable. The fear rules her interactions with others.
More harshly than was wise, Alexander snapped, “She’s four and lost her father. Who said, ‘Suffer the little children…’ ”
With the hope Ella would settle down and Sister Diego might witness the vision of an innocent in pain, he pulled her onto his lap. After all, a four-year-old has no designs except to be loved, fed, safe, and warm. When she wasn’t screaming, Ella was as sweet looking as Jia had been at four: large round brown eyes, soft lengths of black hair escaping from two messy braids. Sister Diego could see her in her brothers’ hand-me-down green sweater and old patched trousers. No sign of sinful disease.
Both for his own comfort and hers, Alexander rocked her. Ella calmed as she snuggled into his shoulder, but Sister Diego’s face remained without compassion.
[Alexander] considered as the afternoon sun bounced off Ella’s black hair how much she resembled Jia at that age, but her normally bronzed skin, looked grayish. Daniel and Jamie looked worse, covered in flour. The girl was on some invisible tether, bouncing with childish energy, but matching her brothers’ sluggish pace. Neither boy should be broken in adolescence.
Due to overpopulation, lack of natural resources, no public education, and a surplus of political bickering, Earth is a cesspool and our solar system’s colonies have failed. Nevertheless, outside our solar system, exploration has thrived.
Encouraged by the conquest of Kipos, idealistic dreamers look beyond Earth to build a utopia from the abandoned Lunar Colony Serenitatis. Industrialists reconstruct the colony, but struggle to turn a profit while encouraging scientific discovery.
Brimming with hope despite intense uncertainty and physical hardship, the impoverished Ella Sethdottier follows rumors of plentiful jobs on the moon. On roads fraught with danger, she discovers Earth is a bigger place than she ever imagined, but Serenitatis is little more than a prison colony. Ella forges unlikely friendships with corrupted androids and the quixotic prison doctor, Ian Whitlatch, who champions equality and rights for inmates. Amid corruption and nobility, tragedy and victory, the fate of the colony hangs precariously in the balance.
Coming soon in paperback and ebook for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and IBooks.