Ninety-Five Percent Human by Suzanna Williams
Genre: Young-Adult / Sci-Fi
August 31st 2013 by Beresford Publishing House
Teenager, Joe Kendrick, thinks he’s got problems. The farm he’s looked after since his father’s suicide is falling and his brother wants to sell it, his girlfriend has dumped him and his normally down-to-earth Nan starts muttering about seeing UFO’s. And all Joe wants is a ‘normal’ life.Then he saves suicidal stranger, Sarah, from drowning.
What Joe doesn’t know is that Sarah is a human/alien hybrid, sent to test the viability of life on Earth, and, as she’s survived hostile aliens are already planning their attack.
Ninety-five percent Human is the first in a two-book sci-fi adventure.
“So,” I say. “Your name’s Neeca, is it?”
I don’t mean it to sound like an accusation but Sarah takes a step backwards,
twisting her fingers in the hem of her cardigan. “I like Sarah better,” she whispers.
“I need the truth,” I say. “Jesus, I’ve just found out you’re being followed by a
freaking robot. At least I deserve to know why.”
Sarah gazes at the floor as I’m saying this, her fingers pulling at the cardigan.
“It’s because of what I am,” she says.
I have no idea what she means. “You’re the daughter of some controversial
politician or a runaway princess?” I suggest.
“Well, you lived on a military base. How about you defected and leaked top
secret plans to the opposite side?”
I gaze at the motionless computer thing standing in the farmyard. “Shit, you’re
not from the future are you?”
She shakes her head.
“All right, how about I stop guessing and you tell me?” I say. But she shrinks
further away and doesn’t say a word.
“OK.” I try a different tack. “Neeca doesn’t sound like an American name,” I
say. “Are you actually from America?”
Sarah takes a deep breath and her chin lifts a little higher. “When you said I
had an American accent, I let you think I came from America,” she says. “But I’ve
watched a lot of American films.” Tears well up in her eyes. “I watched Spanish films
“So, where’re you from?”
“Once you know, we won’t be friends anymore,” she says.
I move over to her and take her hand. “You can trust me,” I say as gently as I
can. “What’s so bad about telling me where you’re from?”
Sarah stares at my hand holding hers and sighs. “I suppose I’ll have to leave
anyway,” she says. She takes a deep breath. “I come from a place called Katchka
I was never any good at geography. “Russia?” I suggest.
She bites her lip. “It’s about halfway across the next galaxy.”
I must have heard her wrong but I struggle with what else she might have
said. “The next galaxy?” I repeat stupidly. “You’re telling me you’re from space; an ...
She glances at me sideways. “Not strictly,” she says. “I’m a hybrid.”
I feel like a dyslexic reading the
“Human and alien genetic material, mixed,” she whispers. “They sent me to
Earth as an experiment, a trial, to test if they’d got the mix right; test if I’d survive. But
I’m ninety-five per cent human,” she adds hopefully.
I’m looking at her, right into those serious grey eyes. And it all makes some
kind of insane sense. She doesn’t do odd things because she’s American, or
because she’s dyslexic. She’s not bad-mannered, or religious, or even an army brat.
She’ from another planet.
Character Interview: Jake from Ninety-five percent Human
Ninety-five percent Human is a new YA sci-fi about about sixteen year old Joe Kendrick, living on a struggling Welsh hill farm, who saves a girl, Sarah, from drowning only to discover she’s a human/alien hybrid from another planet sent to test the viability of life on Earth. But Sarah isn’t the only alien living on our planet. Today I’d like to introduce you to Jake.
Thanks for joining us, Jake. Now, according to author Suzanna Williams, you are ‘an evolving, rebel computer life-form with a head for survival, a poor taste in clothes and a love of bad jokes.’ What do you think of that description?
It is true I am a computer life-form made from Flexible Living Tissue. I can rearrange my molecules to take on the life form of the different planets I visit and it is also true the rebel force I work for programmed me so I am able to evolve.
(Frowns at me)
But I don’t know what you mean about my clothes. Indiana Jones was a big movie star in a hat like mine and these glasses made Harry Potter very famous.
Hurry up and let us in. (Laughs) Nothing wrong with my jokes either.
(Smiles) Clearly not. So, you were programmed by a rebel force. Can you tell us about them and what’s happening on the other planets?
Space is not a peaceful place: think the wars on this earth magnified ten-fold. I was built as a pilot serving the Unity, that’s the galaxy’s peacekeeping force but my plane was shot down over a warring planet ... and no-one sends a rescue party for a computer life form. The rebel group that found me thought I would be useful to them so they put me back together. Now I visit different planets to collect resources and learn about Earth culture.
Ah, Earth culture. How are you finding that?
Actually, I’m doing much better now Joe is my friend. He’s been giving me advice like ‘it’s not human to tell jokes to people who are about to be parted forever.’ (Frowns at me again) Do you think my glasses are wrong? I don’t want to look like a wizard.
No, they suit you. John Lennon wore those too. OK, some quick questions.
Earth. Lots of valuable resources I can sell on the intergalactic market.
I draw power from your sun through a quartz crystal core. I do not have to eat.
OK, favourite thing about Earth?
Television. Your programmes are so funny. (Chuckles) ‘Star Trek’! I mean, like you have the technology to travel through space! (Laughs more) and ‘Men in Black’. Other planets have ways of altering memories via the neural pathways but you’re light years away from that. (Doubles over laughing)
OK, favourite movie star?
Johnny Depp. Do you think I look like him?
I can see the resemblance. If they make Ninety-five percent Human into a film, Johnny Depp could play you.
I would like that.
When you’re on Earth, you pose as a geologist. Why did you choose that occupation?
One of the most valuable items I collect when I visit Earth is quartz which is the main source of power on a lot of planets. A geologist is the perfect cover. And geologist jokes are funny. (Grins) Why are geologists miserable?
Umm, I have no idea.
Because they’re always looking for faults. (Laughs until his hat falls off)
(Deciding Jake’s not going to stop laughing anytime soon.) So thank you to Jake. He’s the first alien robot I’ve interviewed. Who could have guessed we’d have so much fun.
About the Author:
Suzanna Williams is a perpetually eighteen year old YA author who lives in the wild, wet, Welsh borderlands surrounded by ruined medieval castles and Celtic mythology where she looks for UFO’s amongst the stars and imagines all the people she meets have dark secrets.
When she is not inventing radical problems for her unsuspecting heroes and plotting their escape, Suzanna is a serial collector of random badly paying jobs and has never found a use for her BSc in Psychology whatsoever.
As a child, Suzanna filled notebook after notebook with stories and her first taste of writing success was a poem published in the local newspaper aged just nine years old. She has written and directed several plays and pantomimes before publishing her debut novel, ShockWaves, in 2012.
Suzanna loves sci-fi action adventures, playing the piano, believes Romeo and Juliet should have talked more and considers sarcasm to be the highest form of wit.
She has a daughter who is a drummer, another daughter who is a driving instructor, a son who is a dancer and a 'nearly' grandson she's dying to meet.
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