*NEW* Paperback Cover Announced 6/29/11, books available 11/29/11 !
Amy Martin's parents are essential to an exploratory mission by the government to see if it is possible to sustain life on an Earth like planet light years away from Earth. Amy is nonessential. She doesn't have to go but could she really stay here on Earth and go on with her life without her parents? She can't. So she goes with her parents and they are all cryogenically frozen and placed into storage aboard the Godspeed. The Godspeed is the vessel which will take them to Centauri Earth. Then Amy is thawed years before she is supposed to. She's on the Godspeed and things aren't what they should be. Who thawed her and why? Amy is brought out of the cold and into the infirmary by Elder, the 16 year old trainee to Eldest, the leader of the ship. Elder has been raised to be Eldest and everything he knows is so different from what Amy knows to be true. What has happened on the Godspeed while she slept? Elder is fascinated by Amy and begins to learn the truth about life back on Earth and it's history from her. When some of the other frozen people are murdered, Amy and Elder must figure out who is killing them and why. Who is killing the people and what is Eldest hiding from everyone? It's up to Amy and Elder to find out as they make their way across the universe.
Elder is 16 years old and the youngest person on the ship. He is being trained to become the next Eldest. Elder sees Amy in the cryo chamber and wonders what it would be like to know her. He just wants to know why she is so different and beautiful. Why she fascinates him. When Amy is thawed, he takes her under his wing and tries to acclimate her to life on the Godspeed. He wants to be her friend and maybe something more, something that he never before believed to be real. Being around Amy opens the flood gates in Elder and he begins to question things that he never did before. Amy helps him see the things that Harley, his best friend, has been trying to show him.
Some of Elder's best lines:
"How could anyone say someone with sunset hair is nonessential?"
"...So, I do what any reasonable person would do when faced with a crying girl.
I get the frex out of there."
"Amy pulls away and looks into my face. Her pale skin is blotchy red, her eyes are veined and shadowed, and a shiny line of snot trickles from her nose to the top of her lip.
She wipes her face and with her arm, smearing tears and mucus. She never looked more BEAUTIFUL to me."
"And that's why I'll never be as good an Eldest as he is. Because I like a little chaos."
Amy chooses to be frozen and taken aboard the Godspeed with her parents. She doesn't feel like there is much to stay for compared to losing her parents so she goes through the horrific freezing process. Then while she is still frozen, she begins to come back to herself. Her mind begins to work in her frozen body and it's a nightmare. But she soon realizes that she is being thawed out. She comes back to life gasping and sore. Amy wasn't properly thawed and she's lucky to be alive. The first person on the Godspeed to really reach out to her is Elder who brings Doc to her when he finds her thawing. But Harley tries to befriend her too.
Some of Amy's best lines:
"If my life on Earth must end, let it end with a promise. Let it end with hope.
I wrap my pinkie around his. He squeezes my finger, and this world doesn't feel so cold anymore.
"Will you stay with me?" I whisper.
"I could tell them about the different kinds of rain, pouring rain that's perfect for when you want to stay inside and watch a movie or read, or piercing rain that feels like needles on your skin, or soft summer rain that makes your first kiss with your first love all the sweeter. "
"I never thought about how important the sky was until I didn't have one."
Harley is an artist who lives in the medical center's mental ward. He is Elder's friend and he tries to teach the younger boy the things that he has learned about life but Elder never listens. Harley is different from the feeders on the Godspeed because he believes in love. He knows that love is real. He loved someone once and she loved him too but life aboard the Godspeed proved to be too much for Kayleigh. She took her own life and left him behind. He paints beautiful Koi fish in her memory. Harley makes his own choices and he tries to help Amy get used to life on the Godspeed. He seems to know that Elder needs her in his life. Harley also saves her from a scary situation. Harley is probably the most "normal" person on the Godspeed in Amy's eyes.
Eldest is the leader of the ship who is supposed to train Elder to become the next Eldest. Eldest lies to Elder and keeps secrets from him. He doesn't like having Amy awake because he thinks that she is turning Elder against him and away from being able to fulfill his place on the Godspeed. Eldest sees Amy as a liability and he'd gladly remove her from the equation if he could get away with it. Eldest is the oldest person on the ship and he wants to relinquish the position as Eldest but he also enjoys the power. Eldest has a secret that would rock the very foundation everyone's lives aboard the ship.
Orion works in the Recorder Hall which is sort of like a technologically advanced library. He tries to help Elder and Amy when they need to look something up. Orion isn't who he pretends to be though.
Doc is in charge of the medical center. He sees that everything runs smoothly there. He also cares for Amy more than once during her time on the Godspeed.