Book Reviews of EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2)

EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2)
EarthRise - Deathday, Bk 2
Author: William C. Dietz
ISBN-13: 9780441011049
ISBN-10: 0441011047
Publication Date: 9/30/2003
Pages: 432
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.

3.9 stars, based on 38 ratings
Publisher: Ace Books
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

10 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 32 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I really liked this book. It was interesting. I liked the way Mr. Dietz built the characters, both human and alien. There was even some humor mixed in, as characters wondered 'who am I to be doing this?' There were multilple groups of characters. Three groups of aliens who each had their power struggle within their group while tryig to keep their eye on the goal. I would order it again.

I ordered this book after I read book 1, DeathDay.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 1525 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
From back cover: It took three days for the Saurons to destroy the great cities of the world, wrapping the earth in a blanket of fire and ash. More than three billion people perished under the alien assault. But the invaders stopped short of complete annihilation. They needed survivors---they needed slaves.
Jack Manning was one of those slaves. He knows the purpose behind the construction of the oppressive alien temples--incubators for a new generation of Saurons that will one day make the takeover of Earth complete.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 83 more book reviews
The second part of the excellent story of alian invasion and the men and women of the USA fighting back in any way they can. You will want to read "Deathday" first.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 160 more book reviews
A very good ending to Death Day. You must read Death Day first in order for the entire story to be enjoyed.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 92 more book reviews
Great Alien Invasion read......companion to "Deathday" for the total war!!
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 495 more book reviews
dequel and concoclusion to "Deathday". Really good alien invasion work.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 4 more book reviews
a SF Tom Clancy read.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 7 more book reviews
Great Series... goes with 'Death Day' by the same author.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 12 more book reviews
Fast paced action. Enjoyed the book but would strongly recommend to be sure to read "DeathDay" first to be familar with the story and characters as the book doesnt stand alone. I was fortunate to get both of them at the same time and read them together. DeathDay is a good action story also.
reviewed EarthRise (Deathday, Bk 2) on + 41 more book reviews
-= CAUTION: This review contains references to plot elements that could be considered "spoilers". =-

I first thought about reviewing 'Death Day' and 'Earth Rise' separately. However, since the story never really ends in 'Death Day', (even the countdown doesn't hit "0" until the end of 'Earth Rise'), it makes much more sense to write one review for the entire story.

Like many who have posted here, I am a die-hard sci-fi reader. I have been reading sci-fi since I discovered my first Isaac Asimov robot novel back in the late 1960's. Although my reading preference these days falls mainly in the Star Trek and Star Wars universes, I enjoy occasionally expanding into other story-lines - especially if the novel is written by a "known" author.

FWIW, I tend to find that the whole alien-invasion/end-of-humanity theme has been over-done, but I figured that I'd give this duology a shot. I have yet to decide if it was a waste of valuable reading time or not. There were sections in both books that were page-turners, but there were others that seemed to drag. The author attempts to use the writing style of introducing multiple characters in differing situations in diverse locales, whose paths weave together ultimately concluding at the end of the story. This writing style is hard to do well, and Dietz only does an average job of it. At times, the writing was so disjointed that I needed to go back and reread several paragraphs to figure out where he switched tracks. This problem was exascerbated by the fact that the author kept flipping between a character-driven and plot-driven storyline.

Others have made negative comments about the color-based racial plot line in this book. I found it to be an interesting twist - especially coming from the pen of a white male author. Some reviewers have poo-poo'ed the thought that white supremacists idolizing Adolf Hitler would continue to exist in 2020, *and* that they wouldn't be interested in joining the rest of humanity in the fight against the Saurons. The "racialist" group 'White Rose' chooses instead to execute non-whites, homosexuals and Jews. Anyone who has had any contact with those people would know that Dietz sadly pegged it pretty much dead-on. One area of the race morality play where I think the author dropped the ball is that he spends very little space exploring the huge emotional toll it would take on those "people of color" who were not only forced into slavery, but also being elevated to the role of (the hated) overseer. With not one, but two influential African-American characters, there could have been a LOT more development of that aspect of the story.

Dietz does try to introduce a couple of 'romantic' elements to the story. I won't go into details on this, but I think that he fails miserably. In fact, I found that whole element just a bit distracting; this is a humanity-extinction tale, not a love story in space. Another distraction was the all-to-brief introduction of human slaves being taken into space to mine asteroids. It would seem that the sole reason for the author to go there was to provide a mechanism to join two characters together and then bring them back to earth. Once they return, no more page space is given to the slaves mining asteroid AR-39.

One aspect that I feel was left completely unexplored was the biology behind the Sauron's asexual reproduction. While not unique in the genre, (such as the Drac race in 'Enemy Mine'), it certainly is unusual. With almost 800 pages between the two books, the author could have spent some time dealing with how this evolved. For an aggressive insect species, having no females should eventually result in the extinction of the species. While on the topic of biology, I think the whole concept of 100-125 pound bugs stretches the envelope some. I would think that the only environment that would support that size would be one where the gravity is less the Earth's. With that in mind, the stronger gravity here would make it all but impossible for the Saurons to easily move around, let alone leap up to 50' in the air.

I initally found it odd that the Saurons opted to build their sole death/birth citadel in the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. (Of course, we are eventually teased to the fact that there is at least a second citadel in the southern hemisphere.) After a bit of thought - and a statisdtical revelation in "Earth Rise" - it does make a bit a sense. Based upon the quoted numbers, two citadels would be more than sufficent to hold the entire Sauron race. And, since even conquoring races have limitations in resources, two construction projects makes more sense. That said, the choice of the jungle of Guatemala makes no sense. If the whites in the human race are the primary source of physical slave labor, I think it would be very difficult to find enough white slaves to complete the project with.

I suspect that this duology was intended to be the start of another series for the author, either Dietz or his publisher decided that it just needed to end. This is evidenced by the fact that after almost 800 pages, Dietz wraps up the entire invasion and rebellion, puts the few surviving Saurons on a "reservation", sends the Ra'Na on their merry way, and sends the two remaining major males characters off to live happily ever after with new love interests - while the sole survivor of the 'White Rose" and her child continue on to spew racialist bile in a post-Sauron United States.

As another reviewer put it, "Fiction is, in the end, in the eye of the beholder". I agree entirely with that sentiment. While 'Death Day' and the sequel 'Earth Rise' aren't everyone's cup of tea, I have decided that it was worth the time to read them. Do I wish the author had spent more time developing or further exploring some aspects of the story? Sure. That's why it rates 3 stars.