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Getting Back

by admin on March 3, 2011

Getting BackPublished February 2000

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The year is 2048. The world’s population has doubled. Wilderness exists only in bad movies. Every region on Earth has been explored, organized, and tamed. But in this brave new age of multi-national corporations, a homogenized global culture and stultifying jobs, one secret organization promises the most forbidden pleasure of all: a true outdoor adventure.

The price? A year’s salary.

The destination? The one continent that disease and destruction have put off-limits after bioengineering that went haywire.

The catch? On this expedition, once you go, you may never return.

In the belly of a shimmering twenty-first century pyramid, Daniel Dyson occupies Cubicle 17 and fantasizes about love and escape. By day he pursues petty ways to subvert his overly programmed life. By night he flirts with a shadowy group that dares him to rebel and reclaim his autonomy. Then he stumbles onto “Outback Adventure.”

This mysterious company doesn’t advertise and keeps its Internet site heavily encrypted. Yet Daniel, partly to inject some deeper meaning into his life, partly to find a woman who doesn’t want to be found, soon finds himself taking a perilous trek across the forbidden continent of Australia. There, the adventure firm has promised, he will find out what it means to be truly alive, to test his limits, and to understand real survival. What he and two dozen fellow adventurers don’t know is that all their high-tech gear and all their plans haven’t prepared them for what lies ahead. Because this journey will not only plunge them into stark desert and a gauntlet of natural dangers, it will force them to face the ferocity of fellow human beings — and test their own core beliefs about civilization, freedom, and the wild.

Getting Back is a novel of physical survival and a search for meaning in which both have become extinct – an eco-thriller that asks us whether getting back is the object of the game, or the punishment for losing…


“Dazzlingly cinematic, Getting Back is the thinking man’s Road Warrior, a journey into a wasteland depopulated of civilization but not of ideas . . . Speculative fiction at its best, a brainy amalgam of action, romance, and a probing of post-twentieth-century urban civilization that cuts disturbingly close to the bone. A hit.”
–Steven Pressfield, author of Gates of Fire

“If you’ve never understood why some people care so much about wildness, then this gripping novel will provide a few of the answers.”
–Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature

“Dietrich has married the traditions of 1984 and Deliverance to produce a futuristic wilderness thriller that is not only utterly gripping but thought-provoking.”
–Robert Clark, author of In the Deep Midwinter

“An engaging read with considerable depth and twists . . . The ingenuity and survivalist mentality of the characters will make you sneak peeks at this one during dinner.”
Christian Science Monitor

“The outdoor action never stops.”
Outdoor Magazine

“Part Lord of the Flies, part Travels in Arabia Deserta . . . leaves the reader cheering.”
Seattle Times

“The taut narrative and engaging prose rival the page-turners of early John Grisham.”
Skagit Valley Herald

“An exciting, thought-provoking, terrifying novel that is difficult to put down before the final page.”
Sullivan County Democrat

“A fast read with plenty of excitement and suspense, characters you care about, and an attitude that jumps up and bites the reader.”
Salem Statesman Journal

hardcover / $24.95 / Warner Books / 0446524573 / February 2000
paperback / $7.50 / Warner Books / 0446609749 / March 2001

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