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Survival (Species Imperative Series #1) [NOOK Book]


Herself a biologist, Julie E. Czerneda has earned a reputation in science fiction circles for her ability to create beautifully crafted, imaginative, yet believably realized alien races. In Survival, the first novel in her new series, Species Imperative, she draws upon this talent to build races, characters, and a universe which will draw readers into a magnificent tale of interstellar intrigue, as an Earth scientist is caught up in a terrifying interspecies conflict. Senior co-administrator of the Norcoast ...
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Survival (Species Imperative Series #1)

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Herself a biologist, Julie E. Czerneda has earned a reputation in science fiction circles for her ability to create beautifully crafted, imaginative, yet believably realized alien races. In Survival, the first novel in her new series, Species Imperative, she draws upon this talent to build races, characters, and a universe which will draw readers into a magnificent tale of interstellar intrigue, as an Earth scientist is caught up in a terrifying interspecies conflict. Senior co-administrator of the Norcoast Salmon Research Facility, Dr. Mackenzie Connor, Mac to her friends and colleagues, was a trained biologist, whose work had definitely become her life. And working at Norcoast Base, set in an ideal location just where the Tannu River sped down the west side of the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Coast was the perfect situation for Mac. She and fellow scientist Dr. Emily Mamani were just settling in to monitor this year's salmon runs when their research was interrupted by the unprecedented arrival of Brymn, the first member of the alien race known as the Ohryn to ever set foot on Earth.

Brymn was an archaeologist, and much of his research had focused on a region of space known as the Chasm, a part of the universe that was literally dead, all of its worlds empty of any life-forms, though traces existed of the civilizations that must once have flourished in the region. Brymn had sought out Mac because she was a biologist -- a discipline strictly forbidden among his own people -- and he felt that through her expertise she might be able to help him discover what had created the Chasm. But Mac had little interest in alien races and in studies that ranged beyond Earth, and as politely as she was capable of, she tried to make it clear that she was unwilling to abandon her own work.

However, the decision was soon taken out of her hands when a mysterious and devastating attack on the Base resulted in the abduction of Emily, and forced Mac to flee for her life with Brymn and the Earth special agents who were escorting him. Suddenly, it appeared that Earth itself might be under attack by the legendary race the Ohryn called the Ro, the beings they thought might be the destructive force behind the Chasm. Cut off from everything and everyone she knew, Mac found herself in grave danger and charged with the responsibility of learning everything she could that might possibly aid Earth in protecting the human race from extinction...

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Survival marks a milestone for Canadian science fiction writer Julie E. Czerneda: Not only is it the first book in her Species Imperative trilogy -- which examines the impact of alien species' innate biological drives in a universe where humankind coexists with dozens of sentient races -- it is her very first hardcover release!

Doctor Mackenzie "Mac" Connor is the co-administrator of the Norcoast Salmon Research Facility in British Columbia. The reclusive scientist loves her job studying local populations of salmon but when her work is unexpectedly interrupted by a visit from a seven-limbed, blue, alien archeologist; her world is turned upside down within a matter of hours. The alien, named Brymn, informs Mac that she is the only hope not only for the survival of humankind but also, potentially, for several other sentient races as well. According to Brymn, a race of destroyers that has mastered stealth technology known as the Ro has created the Chasm, a far-reaching swath through space where all life forms on life-capable planets have been eradicated. When Mac's best friend is kidnapped and her research facility attacked, she reluctantly joins forces with the blue alien to unravel the mystery of the Ro -- but what she finds is more terrifying than she could've ever imagined.

Plain and simple: This is Czerneda's best work to date. Paul Goat Allen

Publishers Weekly
Must one species' evolution ensure another's extinction? Canadian author Czerneda (To Trade the Stars) attempts to answer that loaded question by focusing on the unique but dangerous relationship that biologist Mackenzie "Mac" Connor forges with Brymn, a Dhryn archeologist and the first of his race to visit Earth, in this imaginative, if somewhat slow-moving not-so-distant-future novel set in the Pacific Northwest and the far reaches of space. The story comes alive whenever the workaholic, emotionally withdrawn Mac interacts with the seven-armed Brymn, "a giant bearlike being," who at one point applies makeup to go diving with salmon. Trouble arrives in the form of the alien Ro, who kidnap Dr. Emily Mamani Sarmiento, a colleague of Mac's at Norcoast Salmon Research Facility. Blamed for creating the Chasm, a zone of space littered with worlds that have been sucked dry of all life forms, the Ro also want Brymn and Mac. The Interspecies Union's representative, Nikolai "Nik" Trojanowski, whose mysterious attraction to the straight-laced Mac adds romantic heat to the proceedings, helps the two escape to Haven, the Dhryn homeworld. Unfortunately, Brymn and Mac soon find no place is safe from one species' imperative to survive at any cost. A planned sequel may try to answer the next vital question can friendship evolve to forgive the ultimate betrayal? (May 1) Forecast: The old-fashioned jacket art, with its appealing images of Mac and Brymn, will signal that this book, with its minimal sex and violence, is suitable for young teens and high schoolers. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Czerneda's hardcover debut begins a new science fiction saga. Mackenzie Connor, better known as Mac, is a biologist passionately dedicated to the study of salmon at a research station off the Pacific Northwest coast. She and colleague Emily Mamani are camped on the bank of the Tannu River, awaiting the first salmon run of the year. The last thing that Mac expected was an alien and his diplomatic escort to appear in the middle of camp. The alien is Brymn, the first Dhryn to visit the planet, and he needs the assistance of a biologist, a discipline forbidden to all Dhryn. He wants help with his archeological study of the Chasm, a region of space left lifeless by unknown forces. Mac is not interested until another alien race, the Ro, attack the base and kidnap Emily. She and Brymn escape to the Dhryn planet of Haven, but the Ro are not finished with them yet. This novel bears the hallmarks of Czerneda's earlier books: strong, complex, and appealing characters and a thoughtful, intricate plot. The pace is somewhat slow while the plot on Earth unfolds, but the character development is fascinating, particularly the relationship between Mac and Brymn. Czerneda creates an original and terrific alien species, and Brymn-large, blue, and given to wearing sequined eyeliner-is no exception. The pace picks up once off-planet, and the plot is packed with vivid images and events. Czerneda is a masterful storyteller and one of the best of the recent voices in science fiction. Her books deserve a place in just about any young adult collection. VOYA CODES: 4Q 4P J S A/YA (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, definedas grades 10 to 12; Adult-marketed book recommended for Young Adults). 2004, DAW, 401p., Ages 12 to Adult.
—Donna Scanlon
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101010877
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 5/3/2005
  • Series: Species Imperative , #1
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 183,027
  • File size: 839 KB

Meet the Author

Julie E. Czerneda is a biologist and writer whose science fiction has received international acclaim, awards, and best-selling status. She is the author of the popular "Species Imperative" trilogy, the "Web Shifters" series, the "Trade Pact Universe" trilogy and her new "Stratification" novels. She was a finalist for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. Her stand-alone novel, In the Company of Others, won Canada's Prix Aurora Award and was a finalist for the Philip K. Dick Award for Distinguished SF. Julie lives with her husband and two children in the lake country of central Ontario, under skies so clear they could take seeing the Milky Way for granted, but never do. You can find her at
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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2004

    Poor Mac

    All Mackenzie Connor wants is to be left alone to research her salmon without any more interruptions from stubborn beaurocrats or overzealous grad students. So when an alien archeologist arrives and asks her to help him save life as we know it, Mac is understandably put-out. Julie Czerneda has outdone herself. SURVIVAL has all the Czerneda staples -- her biologist background permeates everything from the hectic environment of the Norcoast Salmon Research Facility to the incredible depth and detail of the alien biology. It's got the same sort of endearing characters that made her other books so enjoyable. But oh, it has so much more. If TRADE PACT and WEB SHIFTERS are the literary equivalent of a tasty chocolate snack, SURVIVAL is a triple chocolate fudge layer cake. With frosting. And sprinkles. It's deeper, heavier, richer than anything she's done before. And when you finish, it hits you like a punch in the gut.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2012

    3.3 stars

    The writing was vivid and excellent, but it was just way too slow for my tastes, not a lot of dialogue, and big gaps between action. I'm not really used to the science fiction genre--except for the Sirintha Jax series (which I love)--so maybe this is the status quo for most futuristic novels. Regardless, this author and I didn't create the chemistry needed to go onto book number two...however, I can see why people like it.

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  • Posted July 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Czerneda Never Disappoints!

    I have read most of this author's science-fiction works, and every last one has been filled with engaging characters, complex and interesting plot-lines, and delightful aliens! If you like sci-fi, you wont be disappointed!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2004

    One of the funniest books i've ever read.

    Survival is what we need more of, a down to earth yet far off science fiction that doesn't make you feel stupid. There are barely any technical terms, and those that are present are explained. And we can't forget the humor of being stuck in an alien transport ship without a working shower, food, and only 3 bottles of water. Then being forced to drink alien wastes... a great read

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 3, 2009

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    Posted August 16, 2011

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    Posted May 2, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2010

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