Video Essayist Lindsay Ellis Announces Her Debut Novel, Axiom’s End

Lindsay Ellis is making her fiction debut! The Hugo-nominated critic, documentary film-maker, and YouTuber took to Twitter on Wednesday to announce the details of her first novel, an “alternate history first-contact adventure” called Axiom’s End.

Here’s the synopsis:

By the fall of 2007, the scandal over whether the U.S. government has been hiding living aliens has reached a fever pitch, and it is all Cora Sabino can do to avoid the whole mess. The force driving this controversy is Cora’s whistleblower father, and even though she hasn’t spoken to him in years, his celebrity has caught the attention of a furious government. But she neither knows nor cares whether her father’s leaks are a hoax, and wants nothing to do with him—until one of the aliens finds her.

To this creature, codenamed “Ampersand,” Cora, like all humans, is an object and nothing more. Desperate to locate his imprisoned fellows, Ampersand, unique in his ability to understand human language, abducts people with ties to the leaks, pumps them for information, and disposes of them—and Cora is next.

Ellis is best known for the long-form video essays on her YouTube channel, in which she discusses film theory and media tropes in everything from Game of Thrones to The Lord of the Rings. In 2019, her three-part documentary The Hobbit Duology, written and edited with Angelina Meehan, received a Hugo nomination for Best Related Work. She currently hosts PBS’ book-centric series It’s Lit!, and you can read some of her essays right here on


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