I know the details of the book well enough, but I can't remember the title or series title for the life of me. It is recent (Post 2008 or so). YA sci-fi. Set in the UK at modern times.

Book one, kid skulks around London, hiding. Aliens have completely taken over the world by broadcasting a signal that "reprogrammed" the humans to do slave labor. Two creatures took care of the humans, the hunters (floating maintenance drones with a poisonous stinger) and giant assault humanoids (that turn out to be automated exoskeletons).

Main character was given injection of nanites by secretly adoptive father (who is an alien) that enables the kid to resist the signal. He gets stung, and is found by a group of militant kids who take him to their base to see if they can help/if he will survive. He does, they train, and find the aliens have drilled a hole into the earth's core.

They take the fight to the mothership with a can of fabricated nanites originally taken from the main character (who has them floating in his body). Alien mastermind turns out to be a intelligent swarm of nanites. The main character shoves the nanites into the swarm, losing his hand in the process, and turning the nanite AI into a friendly golden figure. The figure refers to him as Illuminant.

Book two, Essentially this, boy finds his father, finds the father is an illuminant (alien) scientist, and a military dude from another shielded base is a warrior-caste Illuminant.

The Illuminants are revealed to be composed of nanites after 'transcending' their physical form. While an enemy mothership moves from another country to attack the friendly mothership, they find some humans have been super-mutated into crazy monsters, and one semi-mutated girl, Maggie(?) is the only friendly one. The warrior-caste illuminant kills the dad, takes over the friendly mothership, and plans to infect all humans with his bio-weapon (which created the super-powerful mutants) in an attempt to destroy the enemy motherships. The history of the Illuminant was revealed, and why the motherships are trying to drill to the earth's core.

The kid is turned into an illuminant and can turn into a swarm of nanites. At the end, the warrior-illuminant is defeated along with the enemy mothership (which is turned into a golden, friendly ship) and a giant father-of-all-behemoth ships comes into the solar system (and it is revealed that it is a corrupted illuminant sent to travel the stars).

1 Answer 1


This is the Earthfall Trilogy by Mark Walden, first book released in 2010.

Earthfall (Earthfall #1)

Sam awakens to see strange vessels gathered in the skies around London. As he stares up, people stream past, walking silently toward the enormous ships, which emit a persistent noise. Only Sam seems immune to the signal. Six months later, he is absolutely alone.

Or so he thinks. Because after he emerges from his underground bunker and is wounded by a flying drone, a hail of machine-gun fire ultimately reveals two very important truths: One, Sam is not, in fact, alone. And two, the drone injury should have killed him—but it didn’t.

Retribution (Earthfall #2)

It’s been several months since the events of Earthfall, yet Sam’s attempts to rouse the enslaved people of London from their trance-like state have frustratingly failed. Worse still, the enormous Voidborn drilling device which Sam and his friends disabled in London was one of hundreds scattered across the planet, all nearing the final stages of construction.

Joining up with another resistance group, they plot to disable a drilling machine in Tokyo and in the process implant viral commands that will cause a catastrophic failure of the entire network. Just as that mission appears to have been successful, Sam and the others are double-crossed by the resistance leader.

Earthfall: Retribution will take the series on to a global stage, as the true scale of the conflict being played out on Earth is revealed...

The transformed beings are Illuminate as seen in the summary of the third book.

Redemption (Earthfall #3)

The battle for Earth continues. In order to defeat the Voidborn, the alien race that invaded Earth, Sam must come to terms with the Illuminate powers he has inherited and return to London. The only hope he has for defeating the aliens is to enlist the help of not only his friends, but also what he fears most.

Sam and his friends must find a way to awaken the sleeping Illuminate far beneath the surface of the Earth, but what they don't realise is a dark and terrible secret is also about to be uncovered. A secret that may spell doom for all of humanity.

One thing is certain, whatever happens, life will never be the same for Sam ever again. And he will be forced to confront the reality that he may have to pay the ultimate price or finally watch the Earth fall.

Found by searching for book series aliens nanites london (not my first search string, but the one that worked).

  • 2
    Found by searching for book series aliens nanites london (not my first search string, but the one that worked).
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Aug 16, 2017 at 19:59

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