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When an alien race known as the Surge arrives on Earth with deadly force, three high school kids in Philadelphia find themselves at the center of the fight for survival in a city tearing itself to pieces in panic. Hunted by creatures hell-bent on hauling them off to a fate they can only guess at, the teenagers must deal with their shock and grief at losing everyone they held dear as they struggle to stay one step ahead of both the invaders and the forces of a wealthy corporation which seems to know more about the assault than it should.
Kyle’s dad worked for the company. His last contact with his estranged, rebellious son was to send him a gift which could now prove the key to unlocking the Surge’s plans, as well as giving the kids the means to fight them. With his friend Stef, whose own tragic past gives them an unlikely edge against the aliens, and street-smart runaway Alex, they’re in a race where there’s no prize for coming second.
If the three sixteen-year-olds are going to learn the truth, about themselves as well as the aliens, find out why the Surge came, and maybe determine whether or not humanity has any hope of holding them off, they’ll have to trek a thousand miles across country from the ruins of Philadelphia to the Gulf Coast and Kyle’s dad’s final posting.
But that’s for the future; right now they can’t afford to look that far ahead.
First they have to get out of the city itself. First they have to survive day zero.