The experimental space craft Skylark was supposed to sling shot around the moon to test stasis technology. At least, that is what the crew were told. Instead of enjoying their brief stardom, they wake from stasis to find themselves marooned on a hostile alien world. One of the crew dies on impact and another succumbs to the carnivorous insectoid creatures whose nest they had inadvertently crashed into.
Two crew members survive. Paul Prescot-Weller, an ex air force pilot and Katherine Johnston , a linguist, who trust their fate into the hands of the seemingly friendly natives they encounter. Although lacking in technology, the natives shelter and protected them. However all is not as it seems and they quickly discover that the world they have invaded is in fact a penal colony for a highly advance civilisation.
As the story unfolds, Paul and Katherine discover that their fates are intertwined in ways they did not imagine, both with each other and the natives.
They become separated when Paul falls foul of a local law and must defend his right to live and Katherine finds herself in the medical centre, isolated from the events by its human medic. Anna becomes Katherine’s friend and guide.
It transpires that they are not alone. The colony harbours a human population and in fact the alien race who inhabit the penal colony are not so far removed from the earth as our travellers first believed. Paul learns that the natives originated on Earth. Two rival political factions have very different views as to how to reclaim what is essentially their homeland. One strives for a diplomatic solution and the other for conquest.
Paul and Kathy continue to discover their role within their new home whilst also uncovering a plot to destroy the human race. They ally themselves with the colonists who are in support of a diplomatic solution but darker forces are at work in the colony and will stop at nothing to overthrow their plans.
Project Skylark is the first of a nine part series set in the same universe. The series covers the rise and fall of the earth, its occupation and eventual redemption. It also explores the relationship between two rival alien races, humanity and their differing views. It encourages the reader to question their own attitudes and values; the themes that what constitutes good and evil, life and death, love and hate are merely a point of view.
All 9 books are complete in revised form but requiring editing. Whilst there are only 7 basic plots in the world, Skylark and its sequels take place in a unique universe 10 years in the making. So it is with equal measures of delight and terror that I share it with others.