The Solarbus Legacy

Solarbus Legacy IIPUBLISHED IN:  2015 (Second Edition)

THE AUTHOR:  Nicki Brandon

THE EDITOR: Lorna Kiddoo, Russ at CreateSpace

THE PUBLISHER: Self-published with CreateSpace–Paperback and Kindle.

SUMMARY:  Farms had become dry and barren outside the city without power that had been deserted after the economic and social collapse brought about by the depletion of the world’s oil reserves.  In the wake of the catastrophe, just a relatively few fortunate survivors possessed a Solarbus.  They lived in a Cluster on the outskirts of the city.  A cruel futuristic society had formed, leaving the rest of the survivors wretched, scavenging wanderers, feared, but ignored by Solarbus Society citizens, who called them Terfs.

Jeff Parke and his wife, Eva, and their eighteen-year-old daughter, Clarissa, are privileged Solarbus inhabitants.  Because Jeff knows he has no right to be in Solarbus Society, he is seeking a promotion at his job with Computers, hoping it will give him status and security. A friend becomes a deadly rival for the same position, as he tries to expose Jeff’s situation.  Jeff’s wife, Eva, is unhappy as a confined Solarbus wife who wants evidence that Jeff loves her, suspecting that he may have another distraction.  Clarissa faces with dread her duty to marry and become a Solarbus wife when all she wants is freedom.  The penalty for not adhering to the rules of the governing Corporation is banishment.

One day, as they are going about their daily routine, a Terf kidnaps Clarissa.  Lured to the Terf’s mountain camp, Jeff and Eva follow the Solarbus that is carrying their daughter away.  At the camp, they uncover a sinister plot for revenge and justice.  And they discover lifelong harbored secrets, including, most tragically, the deeds their parents had committed a generation ago, during the terrible days of the Scramble, that forged a profound effect on their lives.

Nicki Brandon II

THE BACK STORY:  I was driving over to the gas station during the oil embargo of the 1970’s when I thought about what people would do without gasoline and oil to run their cars.  We wouldn’t be able to get to work, or to the grocery store.  The grocery stores would run out of supplies because there would be no deliveries, and on and on.  Americans must have their mobility.  If the world’s oil supplies became depleted, the economy would collapse.  Our homes would be useful for shelter only.  The entire infrastructure would disintegrate.  I thought—how about solar-powered cars?  Or, better yet, solar-powered motor-homes.  Then we’d have a place to live and mobility.  Then I saw that this could be a story.  So I went home and began a story about a family with a son and a daughter on the road in the solar-powered motor-home when a man steps into the road, and they stop for him.  As the story developed and changed, I knew it was a novel, not a short story.

WHY THIS TITLE:   The title was just “Solarbus” until I was ready to publish, at which time I thought “The Solarbus Legacy” would be better.

WHY SOMEONE WOULD WANT TO READ IT: This is not an environmental screed, but a well-told story. It’s one thing to predict a vaguely dark future, another to people that future with real people.


“I’m usually not into futuristic stories but I found this book to be very enjoyable. It presents a slice of what life could look like in the near future; bleak but with hope. A good read and a great start for this author. Probably a personal preference, as no one knows how language will be in the future, but I felt an overall stiffness and formality in the wording. If the setting was in the present time, I might make a suggestion to look at how people actually talk with each other with a more casual tone. Overall, liked it!”—Amazon Customer

“Seemed like a hopeless future until it opened up to many diverse characters making the plot bloom into a very enjoyable read. I liked the way the author brought in sudden changes in attitudes. The various personalities, descriptions and events coming up all through the book made it hard to put down. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to any age from young adult to senior”.—Carol Luke.

“Wish this author would do a sequel, it was that great!”—Jessica Crocker

AUTHOR PROFILE:  I was born in San Francisco and spent most of my life on the San Francisco Peninsula.  I loved living so close to the ocean, the Bay, and the city.  I had thought about writing during college but due to laziness I didn’t start until a few years later.  During those years, I married and was widowed young.  I had two children, so I remarried.  I wrote poetry published by small poetry magazines.  I published short stories and articles.  An Amazon short read called “For Time and Eternity,” that had been originally published in a quarterly published by Ken and Genie Lester, is now published on Amazon Kindle.  When I began writing the “The Solarbus Legacy, I did not think I could write a novel and finish it.  I was too undisciplined—always starting projects and not completing them.  And then I thought I would challenge myself and write the novel just as an exercise in self-discipline.  I ended up caught up in the world I had created, the characters were real, the adventure of their lives more interesting than my own.  Several people have told me that they want to know what happens after the end of the book.  So, I’m writing the second Solarbus Legacy novel, with a third planned.

AUTHOR COMMENTS:  I once had a friend ask me: when was I happiest?  Without thinking I said, “When I’m writing.”

SAMPLE CHAPTER:  See “Look Inside” on Amazon detail page.

WHERE TO BUY IT:  Barnes & Noble (on-line); CreateSpace bookstore.

PRICE:  Paperback 16.95; Kindle  2.99


Published by


Recently retired after 35 years with the News & Advance newspaper in Lynchburg, VA, now re-inventing myself as a novelist/nonfiction writer and writing coach in Lake George, NY.

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