In Yesterday’s Kin members of the scientific community try to stop an airborne virus from harming earth’s population. A ship full of aliens from World have warned Earth ten months before Earth will make contact with a virus-filled cloud.

Notably, Kress wrote Yesterday’s Kin in 2014 well before the current Covid crisis. While the panic and the desperate quest for a vaccine are eerily familiar, this story focuses upon genetics and family connections.

This story revolves around Marianne Jenner and her three children, Ryan, Elizabeth, and Noah. Noah, the youngest, has always felt like an outcast–the black sheep of the Jenner family. These feelings of alienation grow worst after he learns that his family has been hiding a secret from him.

In Kress’ story, the country is divided by politics which make the crisis worst. Few trust the aliens and the joint scientific venture taking place in the Embassy. A terrorism situation creates additional heartbreak and tragedy.

Kress skillfully interweaves scientific facts about DNA and the genetic bottleneck, that occurred 70,000 years ago, with fiction.

by Chantal W.