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  • The Tomorrow Code
  • Written by Brian Falkner
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  • The Tomorrow Code
  • Written by Brian Falkner
  • Format: eBook | ISBN: 9780375892332
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Written by Brian FalknerAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Brian Falkner


List Price: $9.99


On Sale: October 28, 2008
Pages: 368 | ISBN: 978-0-375-89233-2
Published by : Random House Books for Young Readers RH Childrens Books
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“The end of the world started quietly enough for Tane Williams and Rebecca Richards. . . .”

Tane and Rebecca aren’t sure what to make of it—a sequence of 1s and 0s, the message looks like nothing more than a random collection of alternating digits. Working to decode it, however, they discover that the message contains lottery numbers . . . lottery numbers that win the next random draw! More messages follow, and slowly it becomes clear—the messages are being sent from Tane and Rebecca’s future. Something there has gone horribly wrong, and it’s up to them to prevent it from happening. The very survival of the human race may be at stake!

“[A] terrifying SF page-turner!”—Booklist

“A tautly constructed plot. Fast-paced and all-too-realistic. This technothriller offers gearhead ecowarriors everything, including a hugely satisfying ending.”—Kirkus Reviews

A Top 10 Kid’s Indie Next Winter Pick
A Junior Library Guild Selection


The end of the world started quietly enough for Tane Williams and Rebecca Richards, lying on their backs on a wooden platform on Lake Sunnyvale. Which wasn’t really a lake at all.

Sunnyvale School was set in a small valley. A nice little suburban valley. A hundred years ago, it had been a nice little swamp where Pukeko and Black Stilts had competed for the best nesting positions, and croakless native frogs had snared insects with their flicking tongues. But now it was a nice little suburban valley, surrounded by nice little homes belonging to nice little homeowners who painted their fences and paid their taxes and never gave any thought to the fact that when it rained, all the water that ran through their properties also ran through the properties below, and the properties below those, and so on until it reached the lowest point of the valley floor. Which happened to be Sunnyvale School.

As a consequence, Sunnyvale School had to have very good drainage. When it rained hard, as it often did in Auckland in the spring, an awful lot of that rain made its way down from the hillsides and ended up on the playing fields and courts of the small but cheerful school.

And sometimes the water, sauntering its way down the slopes with a mind and a mischievous personality of its own, would playfully pick up odds and ends along the way with a view to blocking those very good drains that the council had put in many years ago after the first and second (and possibly the third) time the school had flooded.

Sometimes it worked, and sometimes it didn’t. It depended on what the water happened to find in its path. Little sticks and paper food wrappings washed right through the big metal grills of the drains. Small branches, stones, and other large objects generally just ended up at the bottom of the homeowners’ nice little properties.

But light twigs and pieces of plastic sailed merrily down the surface of the water and blocked the drains beautifully.

That was what had happened this particular time, and the sports fields of Sunnyvale School were covered in at least four inches of water, high enough to lap at the doorsteps of the cheerful little classrooms across the way, but fortunately not quite high enough to get inside.

Tane and Rebecca lay on their backs on the small wooden viewing platform in the center of the two main playing fields and looked up at the stars, for the rain had stopped many hours ago, and the night was clear and beautiful.

Neither of them were pupils of Sunnyvale School; in fact, both of them were far too old to attend the school, and for another fact, both of them were in their second year at West Auckland High School.

However, when they were younger, they had both gone to Sunnyvale School, which was why they knew that when it rained really hard during the day and stopped at night, it became a magical, wonderful place to be.

The stars above shone down with a piercing intensity that penetrated the haze of lights from the suburban homes around the valley. The moon, too, was lurking about, turning the weathered wood of the small platform to silver. All around them, the lights from the sky above reflected in the inky blackness that was Lake Sunnyvale. The lake that sometimes appeared on the playing fields after a particularly heavy rainstorm.

There were stars above and stars below, rippling slowly in the light breeze, and it was like being out in the center of the universe, floating through space on your back.

Tane and Rebecca thought it was the coolest place to be. On Lake Sunnyvale. After the rain.

Tane tossed a pebble into the air, and there was a satisfying plop a few seconds later as it landed. They both raised their heads to see the widening circles of ripples, shaking the foundations of the stars around them. Then, as if controlled by the same puppeteer, they put their heads back down together.

Tane’s feet were pointing one way, and Rebecca’s were pointing the other, so the tops of their heads were just about touching. If they had been boyfriend and girlfriend, they might have lain down side by side, but they weren’t, so they didn’t.

From an open window in a house somewhere on the surrounding slopes, an old Joni Mitchell folk song reached out plaintively across the water to them.

Rebecca said again, “Time travel is impossible.” She said it more firmly this time, as if that were simply the end of the discussion, and the judge’s decision was final, and no correspondence would be entered into.

Now, ordinarily Tane would have given up at that point, because Rebecca was almost certainly right. After all, it was Rebecca, and not Tane, who had aced her Level One Physics exams the previous year, the top student in the entire country, at the age of just thirteen! Which had been no real surprise to Tane, who had been in the same classes as his friend as she had confounded science teacher after science teacher and math teacher after math teacher, by somehow, instinctively, knowing as much about the subject they were teaching as they did.

Some teachers enjoyed having Rebecca in their class because she was very, very clever, if a little rebellious and uncontrollable at times. But other teachers found it stressful to have a girl among their students who took great delight in correcting them whenever they made mistakes.

So if Rebecca said that time travel was impossible, then time travel was impossible. But there was something about the stars that night. Something about their slow drift through the heavens above and below them, something about the beautifully random and randomly beautiful patterns they made.

Or then again, it might just have been that Tane liked to argue, and he especially liked to argue with Rebecca.

From the Hardcover edition.
Brian Falkner

About Brian Falkner

Brian Falkner - The Tomorrow Code

Photo © Laura Falkner

In 2006, Brian was scuba diving off a small island near the coast of Phuket when his dive buddy frantically pointed at a small underwater rock formation that Brian was just passing. Brian turned to see a huge moray eel with a head the size of a football staring at him.
Brian started to back away slowly, but instead of attacking, the eel turned and wound its way into a crevice. That incident is not yet in one of Brian’s books, but one day it might well be. A lot of Brian’s real-life adventures end up in his books—in fictional disguise of course! Whether it is an attack by a vicious swarm of wasps, being bullied at school, or skimming the surface of the ocean in a tiny seaplane, Brian loves to use real incidents as the basis for the stories in his books.
A recent face-to-face encounter with a deadly king cobra and a ride on an elephant with a mind of its own are all lodged away somewhere waiting for the right moment to emerge in a story.
Even at school Brian knew that he wanted to be a writer. It took him 30 years to realize that dream with his first junior novel published in 2003.
He studied computers at university and then trained as a journalist. He worked as a reporter and an advertising copywriter, a radio announcer and an Internet developer before finally realising his lifelong dream of being an author.
Brian lives on the North Shore of New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland, with his wife and two children. They have two dogs. His hobbies are scuba diving, cycling, travel, amateur theater, photography, and rugby (both union and league).
Here are some more things you might not know about Brian Falkner:
-         He was once a carry-over champion on Wheel of Fortune.
-         He really sucks at poetry, so when he needed a poem for his book Super Freak, he “borrowed” one from his daughter, Laura (then 12 years old).
-         He is an award-winning Web site developer.
-         The Story Wizard on www.brianfalkner.co.nz is actually Brian in disguise.
-         Both his hands just have a single line across the palm (sometimes known as the Simian Crease), a rare quirk that he shares with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.
-         On stage he has played the wizard in The Wizard of Oz, the Fiddler in Fiddler on the Roof, and Santa Claus in The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe.
-         His favourite movie is The Matrix.
-         His favourite television show ever was a 1970s British series called The Professionals.

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