Ignatius Xavier Ryan was a Jesuit priest dying of cancer. He had made peace with death, but his mother had not. She had him kidnapped and put into cryosleep by a scientist whose research she was funding. Seventy-five years later he awoke (IX Departure) into a world in chaos, clinging to existence in a dying biosphere, with a Church guided by a newly resurgent conservative vision.
When he unexpectedly returned from the dead, a rumor started that Ignatius Ryan was still dead and he was a demon masquerading as a priest resurrected by science, not faith. To quell the controversy among the faithful, Ignatius was sent into the future in cryosleep, aboard a spaceship on a deep cometary orbit.
While Ignatius was gone, a deliberate act of genocide (IX Creation) virtually erased human civilization. A tiny remnant, led by the gene-modified Young, restored Earth’s environment to a Holocene paradise. When Ignatius returns, he finds an environmental paradise on an Earth surrounded by a constellation of silently orbiting military satellites.
Grace, the AI who oversaw Ignatius through centuries of flight, returns him to the surface in the Ozark forest. There he meets the survivors of the genocide from the hidden environmental restoration center of S’Loo. To survive, Ignatius must learn who he can trust in a world he doesn’t understand.