Authority is a 2014 novel by Jeff VanderMeer. It is the second in a series of three books called the Southern Reach Trilogy. In an interview, VanderMeer stated that, "if Annihilation is an expedition into Area X, then Authority is an expedition into the Southern Reach, the agency sending in the expeditions." It was released in May 2014.Authority revolves around the operatives of the Southern Reach agency. The agency is responsible for the investigation into the unexplained phenomena of Area X. The second book takes place in the human inhabited areas unlike the first book, Annihilation, which was set within Area X.