The Terraformers


English language

Published Jan. 31, 2023 by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.

OCLC Number:

View on OpenLibrary

3 stars (5 reviews)

From science fiction visionary Annalee Newitz comes The Terraformers, a sweeping, uplifting, and illuminating exploration of the future.

Destry's life is dedicated to terraforming Sask-E. As part of the Environmental Rescue Team, she cares for the planet and its burgeoning eco-systems as her parents and their parents did before her.

But the bright, clean future they're building comes under threat when Destry discovers a city full of people that shouldn’t exist, hidden inside a massive volcano.

As she uncovers more about their past, Destry begins to question the mission she's devoted her life to, and must make a choice that will reverberate through Sask-E's future for generations to come.

A science fiction epic for our times and a love letter to our future, The Terraformers will take you on a journey spanning thousands of years and exploring the triumphs, strife, and hope that find us wherever we make our home.

3 editions

The Terraformers

4 stars

This is a novel about a corporate-run terraformed world and the struggle of the people building that world to push back on their awful corporate owners and ultimately become self-governing.

Chapter one of this book really gripped me: a park ranger on a terraforming planet (who can connect to sensors in nearby trees and grasses) and her texting/flying moose buddy stop a rich camping tourist hurting the local ecosystem. Here's a small handful of other delightful worldbuilding details that I enjoyed, just for flavor: new people are built/decanted rather than born; sentient worms solve NP completeness; there's an endearing cat/train relationship. I think there's something fun about a novel that sets itself extremely far in the future and stuffs itself with neat ideas.

It's hard not to feel the echoes of Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars Trilogy in this whole book. Aside from the obvious bit that it's about the terraforming …

Great Ideas, Uninspired Execution

3 stars

As always, Annalee Newitz is astoundingly smart. She fills this book with many interesting ideas. Unfortunately, the story she writes around the ideas in this book is a little weak. The most notable example is in the first section where two factions have little reason to trust each other, yet they do so in only a couple pages.

Terraformers is still worth reading for the concepts, but Newitz's previous two works of fiction are easily superior.

avatar for mildpeach

rated it

3 stars
avatar for sweemeng

rated it

4 stars