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Planesrunner: Book 1 of the Everness Series

(Everness #1)

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  1,031 ratings  ·  193 reviews
There is not just one you, there are many yous. We're part of a multiplicity of universes in parallel dimensions - and Tejendra Singh has found a way in.

But he's been kidnapped, and now it is as though Tejendra never existed. Yet there is one clue for his son, Everett, to follow: a mysterious app, the Infundibulum.

The app is a map, not just to the Ten Known Worlds, but t
Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Published December 20th 2012 by Jo Fletcher Books (first published December 6th 2011)
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3.68  · 
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 ·  1,031 ratings  ·  193 reviews

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Dan Schwent
Jul 09, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Everett Singh's father is kidnapped right in front of him. Turns out, Papa Singh was working on a project involving parallel universes and has left Everett the Infundibulum, the map of 10 to the 80th power parallel universes. Only other people are after it and Everett leaps through the Heisenberg Gate to another world, a world of airships where electricity was discovered much earlier. Can Everett evade the bad apples in the Plenitude long enough to bring back his father home?

I love wibbly wobbly
Oct 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of "Ship Breaker," "Leviathan"
Recommended to Tatiana by: Kirkus
Shelves: 2011, ya, sci-fi, 2, starred-2011
Planesrunner is a first class teen SF novel, but I worry about this book's ability to reach its potential readers, especially if the ARC is any indicator of how the novel will look in its final version. The cover is weird and the text inside is so small, it hurt my eyes. Great covers and packaging of Ship Breaker (Ship Breaker, #1) by Paolo Bacigalupi and Leviathan (Leviathan, #1) by Scott Westerfeld were able to seduce a fair number of female readers who otherwise wouldn't really give a chance to those essentially boy-oriented books. I wish the same was done for Planesrunner too. I want ...more
(Note: this review is now also up at Far Beyond Reality, my new science fiction and fantasy website!)

I’m a pretty big fan of Ian McDonald, so when I learned that a brand new novel by the author was on the way, I got suitably excited. Then, when I found out that the new novel would be the start of a series, and that this series would deal with alternate dimensions and multiverse-type ideas (very different from his last few books), I got really excited. And then, when I discovered that the series
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

Add Ian McDonald's Planesrunner to the list of the most interesting and well-written young adult novels I've read this year. With the third book coming out soon, I'd initially picked this up to get caught up with the series, but in doing so I also finally discovered why so many readers have been raving about Everness. Adventurous and fun but also fresh and clever, if you're looking for a YA offering that's a little differe
Mar 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1st-in-series
Endless alternate worlds to our own, and young Everett holds the key to them all in PLANESRUNNER. Sounds like a dream come true...though its probably a touch bit of a nightmare for him. For us? A marvelous treat of adventure, science and balderdash!

Fun to the Fun squared!
If you've been aching to find that amazing young adult read that mixes science fiction with high adventure this is definitely the book you need to pick up. I've read a fair share of sci-fi YA books and this one is singularly uni
Jason Pettus
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography []. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally.)

Regular readers know that I do not usually review Young Adult novels here; but I made an exception this month with the new Planesrunner, not just because it was specifically sent to me by the publishing company but because it's the YA debut of sci-fi veteran Ian McDonald, and I'm a big slavish fan of Ian M
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)

When 14 year old Everett Singh watches his father’s kidnapping in front of the Institute of Contemporary Arts, he doesn’t quite know what to do. He’s very sure of what he saw, but the police don’t seem to believe him and his own mother is not even quite sure what to believe. See, Everett’s dad is a theoretical physicist, and it’s possible that he’s discovered something that some people will do anything to get their hands on. When Everett receives a mysteri
Goran Skrobonja
Jul 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finally done with Planesrunner - but it has nothing to do with the quality of the book. Quite the opposite. However, I was so swamped with work that I simply could not have more than ten or fifteen minutes of joy-reading a day. Still, Ian's first installment of this YA steampunk saga is a pure joy and, in my humble opinion, should be included in school reading for junior high classes as a worthy sample of contemporary adventure fiction. Kudos to Ian - as usual, I would give my left arm to be abl ...more
Jul 20, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
I just couldn't. You'd think a concept like this would be super interesting, but this just didn't do it for me.
Chris King Elfland's 2nd Cousin
Dec 13, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Ian McDonald's adult fiction and fans of YA SF like Kat Falls Dark Life
NOTE: This review originally appeared at The King of Elfland's 2nd Cousin on December 13th, 2011. If you enjoy it, please come check us out!

As I've mentioned before, I am a huge fan of Ian McDonald's adult science fiction. His complex, multi-layered plots and penchant for near-future science fiction set in non-western cultures (Africa, India, Brazil, Turkey, etc.) have always struck me as interesting, engaging, ambitious, and structurally complex. So when I heard that Pyr was going to be relea
Today’s post is on Planesrunner by Ian McDonald. It is 268 pages long including a dictionary at the end. It is published by PYR. The cover has two of the main characters one running towards the reader from an iPad and other has her hands thrown out with cards coming from them. The intended reader is young adult but I do not think that YA’s have the attention span for this novel. There is no language, no sex, and all the action is pretty tame. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the dust jacket- There i
Planesrunner is action packed from cover to cover. Fast action coupled with McDonald’s stunning world building, character development, as well as flowing writing will appeal to a younger audience and will make Planesrunner an instant hit with youth and adults alike. While the ideas might sound weighty, McDonald handles them with incredible finesse and manages to not only make these ideas interesting and accessible, but will strike wonder in almost anyone.

That’s probably what is the most amazing
Well..... The book was great. It was well plotted, held my attention, had more interesting side characters then I'd read about in a LONG time, and just made me want to know more. But (and this is a really big but) the author chose to write a good chunk of the dialogue in something he calls Pilari, which is actually an underground language in Europe. Put on top of the fact that the writer is British and the words aren't 'translated' and this book was almost illegible. That got more then a little ...more
Tudor Ciocarlie
Aug 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-my-best-of
Good YA novel, especially in its last third. But I don't think I will read the next one. Maybe if I was younger...
Nov 05, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series, ya
You'll have to forgive me, but I don't think I've ever gone from Adult to YA with an author before and its a fascinating transition. I’m not sure how many people who enjoy YA would also like Ian McDonald’s adult books. There's an added value though in being aware of his earlier stuff when reading Planesrunner. I kept noticing things like how the nanoblade was reminiscent of the Q-blades of Brasyl, the street brawl that smelled faintly like a scene in River of Gods. Then there’s the overall geeki ...more
Dec 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know him for his Science Fiction like THE DERVISH HOUSE and others, but now Ian McDonald invades YA territory with PLANESRUNNER and a world where the Earth exists in almost limitless parallel universes.

Our PoV character is teenage Everett Singh, soccer goalie, science smarty-pants, and son of the brilliant Tejendra Singh, who created the infundibulum--a sort of map to the parallel universes, or "planes". Before now only the ten Earths that have been able to create gateways can visit each oth
Clay Kallam
Jul 15, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-fantasy
Ian McDonald’s “Planesrunner” (Pyr, $16.95, 268 pages) is more traditional, and more young adult than “The Emperor’s Knife” (which actually has some erotic moments), but it too comes to a conclusion at the end of the first book of the Everness series.

But McDonald has plenty of options, as the premise is that there are essentially an infinite number of earths, even though only 10 have been explored, and our adolescent heroes are going to be fighting off the powerful villains wherever they might g
Ade Couper
Jan 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was fun....!

Everett Singh is the son of a theoretical physicist: he sees his dad get kidnapped, then receives a mysterious download for his tablet. What is the infundibulum? Who is Charlotte Villiers? & What lies through the Heisenberg Gate.....?

Ian Mcdonald has written an excellent book to start this series: it has airships (always good!), some brilliant characters, who are believable & 3-dimensional, & a good, easy-to-follow, plot. There's also a feeling of the author really e
OMG, you must read this book!! Did I sound like a teen then? Even though this is YA, this is a mature SF book with a fantastic premise, and oh boy, what a ride. My only niggle (and it is a little one) is that at 14 I found the protagonist's knowledge of quantum mathematics to be a little out there for someone who is still in his normal grade at high school. Why wasn't he at uni if he was such a genius? Anyway, just something to pick at in an otherwise perfect book.
May 08, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
How far would you go to get back someone you love? To a universe outside your own? A parallel existence on a parallel Earth where everything is slightly familiar yet completely unknown? Whom would you trust? Where could you find a safe place?

Read the full review here:
Rajan Khanna
Mar 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book hit me in two of my weak spots - alternate realities and airships. Also, the protagonist, Everett Singh, is English and of Indian, specifically Punjabi descent. It's like the book was written for me. I've loved McDonald's other work and this doesn't disappoint. Looking forward to the next one.
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
An absolutely amazing novel, the first in Ian McDonald's Everness series. McDonald writes gloriously poetic prose that dances across the page, wrapped around a taut, fast-paced, adventurous plot involving quantum physics, a vast multiverse of parallel Earths, sinister conspiracies, and electropunk airship rogues. So very good. Just so very very very good.
Dec 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mg
One of the best children's books about parallel universes I've read, and I've read most of them. The little nods to Star Trek and Doctor Who also appealed to me :)
Jack Deighton
May 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reviewed for Interzone 246, May-Jun 2013.
Tottenham Hotspur supporter, school team goalkeeper and fine Indian cook, Everett Singh witnesses the kidnap of his physicist father, Tejendra, just before they were due to meet on an access visit. He provides the police with mobile phone photos of the kidnap. When his dad’s boss, McCabe, turns up asking if Tejendra had left Everett anything, Everett knows something more profound is afoot. Moreover, when his pictures are returned they have been altered. A
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a junior high school student in Colorado, doing a writing assignment for my Sci-fi LA class. For my book choice, I chose “Planesrunner” by Ian Mcdonald, published 2011. The story is about a very intelligent teenager, Everett, who sees his father get kidnapped. Through the struggle to find clues of the kidnappers, he obtains an ominous email on his portable computer (called Dr. Quantum) that contained an app that is a map to the known multiverse, showing “ten to the eighty”(pg. 47) universes ...more
Aug 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2013
originally posted at:

Planesrunner is the first book in the Everness series written by Ian McDonald. Ian McDonald previous works have been widely nominated for various awards like the Philip K. Dick Award, BSFA Award, Locus Award and the Hugo’s among others. The Queen of Day was awarded with the Philip K. Dick Award for best collection. His earlier books were all aimed at the adult audience, with the Everness series Ian McDonald takes his
3.5 stars. A well developed multiverse, but too many lengths.

Many good things were present in the book. Sadly, they were sandwitched between large bits of a slow paced stuff. The first part was here to present with length the hero and what was happening, it was pleasant to read, but at some point it seemed to drag. Then, around page 100, the good stuff started to happen. It was a good mix of Sliders and Stargate (the tv shows), with a multiverse and new Earths to visit. I enjoyed a lot to disco
Debs Taylor
Jul 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this up at the library because it looked a little different and an interesting idea. It did not disappoint. The main premise is the idea of parallel universes, but that doesn't really kick in till the second half of the book. I thought McDonald introduced quantum physics in a fairly simple way, at least it never affected my involvement in the story. Overtones of steampunk technology and a mix of historical and contemporary give the alternative worlds interest.
Nicholas Whyte

A decent YA novel from Ian McDonald, whose protagonist finds himself on a quest for his lost father, slipping between universes to a steampunk parallel reality, though London remains London whichever universe it is in. It was interesting to read this at the same time as Nina Allan's The Rift, which deals with similar themes in a very different way.
Sherry Mackay
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a splendid book Easy to read fun interesting different. Loved the characters loved the story loved the new world. I got a bit lost in the last bit of it with all the talk of airships etc. I turned off for a while but the ending was fabulous and I can’t wait to read the next book.
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Ian Neil McDonald was born in 1960 in Manchester, England, to an Irish mother and a Scottish father. He moved with his family to Northern Ireland in 1965. He used to live in a house built in the back garden of C. S. Lewis’s childhood home but has since moved to central Belfast, where he now lives, exploring interests like cats, contemplative religion, bonsai, bicycles, and comic-book collecting. H ...more

Other books in the series

Everness (3 books)
  • Be My Enemy (Everness, #2)
  • Empress of the Sun (Everness, #3)
“The geek of the Earth are a tribe and they are mighty.” 4 likes
“Family is what works.” 2 likes
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