"Earth" is an epic novel by one of the greatest SF authors of our time. Author of "The Postman" and the Uplift Series, David Brin is nothing but magnificent. Reading this book reminds me of such masterpieces like "Dune" or "The Lord of the Rings." Although it is not as good as those other books, "Earth" does offer something new.
The book takes place in 2038. The Earth has been devastated by global warming. The USSR never fell. Canada, China, Russia, and Switzerland are the superpowers. South Africa never abolished apartheid. The United States is falling apart because of side-effects to global warming. Immigrants who are not accepted into open countries go to the Sea State (A State made up of floating cities and boats. Sort of like Water World.) for acceptance.
The book opens up introducing us to Alex Lustig, George Hutton, and Stan Goldman. They were doing secret research to harness a black hole as an energy source, but they failed and the black hole sunk into the center of the Earth endangering the whole planet.
We then meet Jen Wolling. She a biologist working on the Ark Project in South Africa. The Arks are enclosed environments that are created to keep the remaining endangered species from becoming extinct. We also meet Nelson Grayson, a black Canadian who immigrates to South Africa to see where his ancestors came from. Jen discovers that he is bright and she takes him under her wing and becomes his teacher.
There are several other characters like the three Indiana teens, the astronaut Teresa Tikhana from Texas, Logan Eng, his ex-wife Daisy, and their daughter Claire. There are so many characters in this book that it would bore you to tell you all about them, you'll just have to read the book.
The people in New Zealand try to figure and way to get rid of the black hole, but they find out even a bigger secret and the whole world must unite to fight off this new threat.
This book is so vast in scale that there are few books, as I said in the introduction, that can compare to this novel on that factor. The only flaw in the book is the ending. It's OK. If you've read it you know what I mean. It just does not live up to the rest of the book. Because of that I give this book a 4.5. You should put this at the top of your reading list.