I can barely remember the details but here it goes. Aliens were about to destroy earth and kill all humans so a group set out to escape to another planet so human kind could survive. They land on another planet and are left without technology and fight animals that come at night with sticks. They move into a large cave and over many many generations they pass down knowledge and stories to the children and eventually build a ship and go to the alien planet to kill them. The humans were set on revenge. One other detail I remember was there were these small animals that at first the humans did not get along with and over many generations they eventually found the animals to be telepathic and were friendly. This has been eating at me for days, what is this book?

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    – amflare
    Mar 2, 2018 at 21:25

1 Answer 1


That's almost certainly Tom Godwin's novel, The Survivors:

Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Survivors_(Godwin_novel):

A ship heading from Earth to Athena, a planet 500 light years away, is suddenly attacked by the Gerns, an alien empire in its expansion phase. People aboard are divided by the invaders into Acceptables and Rejects. The Acceptables would become slave labor for the Gerns on Athena, and the Rejects are forced ashore on the nearest 'Earth-like' planet, called Ragnarok. The Gerns say they will return for the Rejects, but the Rejects quickly realise that that isn't going to happen.

Ragnarok has a gravity 1.5 times that of Earth, and is populated by deadly, aggressive creatures and it contains little in the way of usable metal ores. This, combined with a terrible deadly fever that kills in hours, more than decimates the population.

The novels follows the stranded humans through several generations as they try to survive there, and their unswerving goal to repay the Gerns for their cruelty.

There were two kinds of animal on Ragnarok, a small marmot-like creature which had some sort of telepathy and which they used for communication, and a large, dangerous, semi-intelligent wolf-like creature which they domesticate/ally with and use against the Gerns.

This one's an old favorite of mine.

  • Yes! Thank you!
    – Nick P
    Mar 2, 2018 at 21:30
  • 1
    @NickP if this is the answer you were looking you should accept it
    – Ram
    Mar 2, 2018 at 21:39

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