During a live television broadcast on the night of a lunar eclipse, renowned astrophysicist Andrew Leland is suddenly lifted into the sky by a giant spacecraft and taken away for all to see. Six years later, he turns up wandering in the Sonoran Desert, thin, bearded, a ghost of his former self. Upon his return he denies ever having been abducted, refuses to cooperate with the government or media, and disappears from the public eye, supposedly becoming a hermit somewhere in the woodlands of the Midwest.
Meanwhile, much like J. D. Salinger, Leland inspires legions of cultish devotees, including a young physics graduate student named Shawn Ferris who is obsessed with finding out what really happened to him. When Shawn finally tracks Leland down, he discovers that he has not been hiding in the woods - he's been on the run for years, continuously hunted by a secret organization that has pursued him across multiple continents and is determined to force him into revealing what he knows.
Shawn soon joins Leland on the run. Though Leland is at first reluctant to reveal anything about his experiences in space, Shawn will soon learn the truth about his abduction and the real reason for his return and will find himself caught up in a global conspiracy that puts more than just one planet in danger.
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