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Silver Planet

By

Loved it! 😍

A deeply charming story of Jonathan Powers and his journey from life to death and beyond.

Synopsis

Death is no longer a mystery. The magic of eternity has been found.

I often hear people wondering if life carries on after death. It always makes me smile. That's exactly what happens.

And I used to think no one would discover the truth while they were alive. I was wrong. A sixteen-year-old boy just did. His name is Jonathan Powers and this is his story.

Jonathan's from a planet called Centurian, but that's not where his story begins. It begins on Earth with the tragic death of a boy whose soul travelled to Centurian and became part of Jonathan. That much is as it should be. Humans join the consciousness of others after death.

It's what happened next that I don't understand. Jonathan entered the world of the dead, alive. I've no idea how and I'm supposed to know about these things. My name is Rose. I'm a little robin. You might have met me outside your house or in a local park. Don't worry if you haven't, you'll meet me inside this book. I'm helping Jonathan find a way home. It's one thing to go where only the dead have been, quite another to find a way back.

Silver Planet by Tom Johnson is a deeply charming story of Jonathan Powers and his journey from life to death and beyond. In this story, “human souls join the consciousness of other humans on a distant planet when they die.” What a cool concept! The storyline was completely original and I found it very hard to put it down.


“Death is no longer a mystery. The magic of eternity has been found.” With these haunting yet hopeful words, I was hooked before the story even began. While I loved this novel absolutely, there were two aspects of it that really won me over the most. First and foremost, the characters, particularly Rose the robin. While I loved Jonathan, Rose was the character that really drew me in. Having this little creature help Jonathan on his journey felt so unique and engaging. Secondly, the world building was absolutely excellent. Never once did I feel lost or confused. The author presented the information about this world in a way that was easily accessible and endlessly enjoyable.


If you love books that evoke deep emotional reactions, then I highly recommend this story. It was very reminiscent of What Dreams May Come by Richard Matheson and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. If you loved those books you will most likely love this one as well. It is, above all else, an exciting, unique, refreshing, and thoughtful story that will stay with you long after you finish reading it. I know I will be thinking about it for quite some time. I would also say that this book is wonderfully cathartic, particularly if you are experiencing grief or have lost someone close to you. Right in the middle of reading this book one of my beloved coworker’s died quite suddenly. I was wracked with grief and couldn’t bring myself to read anything for a few days. But I found myself gravitating back towards this book. The poignant story of Jonathan and his journey, the sweetness of Rose, the hope and mystery surrounding this book; all of these gave me comfort and inspiration and I hope they do the same for you, dear reader, as well! This is a book you do not want to miss! 

Reviewed by

I am a librarian and a voracious reader with a never ending appetite for books! I read a variety of different genres, though my favorites are fantasy, LGBT fiction, science fiction, and YA. Last year I read over 350 books and there is nothing I love more than reading books and talking about them!

Synopsis

Death is no longer a mystery. The magic of eternity has been found.

I often hear people wondering if life carries on after death. It always makes me smile. That's exactly what happens.

And I used to think no one would discover the truth while they were alive. I was wrong. A sixteen-year-old boy just did. His name is Jonathan Powers and this is his story.

Jonathan's from a planet called Centurian, but that's not where his story begins. It begins on Earth with the tragic death of a boy whose soul travelled to Centurian and became part of Jonathan. That much is as it should be. Humans join the consciousness of others after death.

It's what happened next that I don't understand. Jonathan entered the world of the dead, alive. I've no idea how and I'm supposed to know about these things. My name is Rose. I'm a little robin. You might have met me outside your house or in a local park. Don't worry if you haven't, you'll meet me inside this book. I'm helping Jonathan find a way home. It's one thing to go where only the dead have been, quite another to find a way back.

Sound Hunter

A Solar System Hosting Human Life, Light Years from Earth


Jonathan Powers blasted out of Elephant’s Trunk. ‘I nailed it, Filia! Recording’s in the bag.’ He had captured the sound of his solar system’s most spectacular wormhole.

Filia Wrens punched the air from the safety of an orbiting shuttle. ‘Yessss!’ she cried, flooding his helmet visor with shooting stars.

Jonathan twisted his single-seat levitator in doughnut circles and scribble-sloppy lines, carving his JP initials into the golden dust rings of a nearby planet. ‘I am, and always will be, a sound hunter,’ he roared. There was no argument from the quiet, pondering cosmos.

‘Jonathan, hurry, the worm will breathe you back in,’ yelled Filia. Elephant’s Trunk was a tidal wormhole. Tidals sucked you in and spat you out. The sound hunters joked that they were allergic to space-borne particles. They sneezed.

Elephant’s Trunk was plagued by the sun-kissed dust of the Tilmenian corona, an arc of seven splendid planets, each with its own dazzling rings. The Trunk was the tentacle end of a vast dark hollow that lay gasping at the centre of the crown.

Jonathan had positioned himself near the tip of the Trunk before the Elephant had inhaled. He’d been sucked inside and catapulted out with the amber-hail exactly as planned, but not everyone emerged in one piece.

Jonathan accelerated and docked his levitator in the shuttle bay. He removed his dust-encrusted space suit and sprinted to the observation deck where Filia was waiting.

Jonathan grinned from ear to ear as he ran, knowing he was moments away from being showered with praise like a big shot who’s brought home the galactic bacon.

‘Yuk, you stink of Elephant odour,’ blurted Filia, pinching her nostrils after embracing him. Jonathan raised his sweaty hands in mock surrender. ‘That’s worse, you lunatic,’ laughed Filia, waving conditioned shuttle-air into his face.

‘More please!’ he howled with delight as the public space bus began its return journey to their home planet, Centurian, the only habitable planet in their solar system and as far as the people of Centurian were aware the only planet capable of hosting human life, anywhere.

Jonathan and Filia had just turned sixteen and been allowed to spend weekend nights at the nexus of sound hunting, Rockmore Space Junction.

Rockmore was the busiest space hub on Centurian. It was situated at the heart of the planet’s capital city, Geocentrian, and it served a constant stream of mining freighters travelling to and from thousands of desolate moons as well as public shuttles visiting places of natural fascination such as Elephant’s Trunk.

Filia had recently joined Jonathan’s school, Tempo Chorium. They’d met briefly a long while ago in nursery classes, then spotted each other several years later going in and out of a local piano teacher’s house, but hadn’t crossed paths since.

The connection had helped break the ice and Filia had quickly come to share Jonathan’s passion for space rock, a genre of magic-music in which sounds were recorded in the wild using spells of capture, then brought back and distributed in music halls for bands to sample and develop with spells of shaping.

Magic-music aficionados would cram the platforms of Rockmore Space Junction whenever the sound hunters arrived, itching to get their hands on the latest recordings.

Filia and Jonathan had become part of the scene, carefully inspecting shuttle origins and flight paths to predict which new samples would best suit their taste or pique their interest.

The Tilmenian run, in and out of Elephant’s Trunk, was the sound hunter’s rite of passage. It was an unwritten rule that until you conquered the tidal ride, you could not be called a sound hunter. This baptism in dust embodied the basics of sound hunting: timing, the opportunity to capture incredible sound and a moment or two of danger.

Filia had thought Jonathan was mad to attempt the Tilmenian run with so little experience of sound capture and next to no training in bust-outs, the label given to these pressurised tidal rides. But Jonathan had insisted, confident as ever in his flying skills.

The boy racer had succeeded and was almost ready to assume the sound hunter accolade he coveted so dearly. There was one more box to tick: the recording had to be stellar. An original blend of magnificence.

Jonathan and Filia leapt off the shuttle as it pulled into Rockmore, locked the levitator they’d hired back into its slot and opened the sound container. The recording was perfect.

The foghorn of Elephant’s Trunk blew once at the start and then at the end like a ship that owns the ocean. In between was the sneeze, the crash-landing sound of a seashore wave as it smashes the sand and rushes to a gentle conclusion.

Jonathan and Filia stared at each other in triumph as they replayed the recording again and again. ‘Oh my gosh, that’s going in our next track,’ cried Filia, grabbing and shaking Jonathan’s arm with joy.

They took the uptown dronibus home. Jonathan walked Filia to her door. ‘Hey, thanks for watching me,’ he said.

‘Oh, not at all, you really did nail it,’ smiled Filia. ‘See you Monday morning, seven-thirty dronibus; none of your usual time-lapsing, Mr Sound Hunter.’

‘I’ll be right on time,’ grinned Jonathan, turning to walk away. Filia reached out but he was already halfway down the path. He looked back as he opened the gate and paused, noticing she was about to say something.

‘I, er,’ hesitated Filia, ‘I just wanted to say, thanks for being such a good friend since I joined school, and make sure you wash that filth off.’

‘I will,’ beamed Jonathan, saluting her before bounding up the road.

About the author

Silver Planet is dedicated to those who've lost loved ones before their time and wonder if they might still be alive, somewhere, in a hopeful world of life after death. It is the first book in a series. The second book, Immortal Star, is written and will be published in due course. view profile

Published on September 30, 2020

Published by Austin Macauley

100000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Reviewed by

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