This very ambitious and largely successful debut novel is a thick (532-page) and generally very well-paced blend of alternate history and hard-science-based space adventure. In this book’s universe, humanity had early space shuttles as early as World War I (!), astronomers discovered an Earth-like planet in one of the nearer star systems years later and […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Do You Dream of Terra-Two?"
The latest from one of SF’s brightest and most imaginative newer writers, ESCAPING EXODUS is Nicky Drayden’s 3rd novel . This time out, Drayden takes the familiar trope of colonists who escaped a doomed Earth in generational sub-light ships in search of new habitable worlds and turns it all upside down in her own brilliantly […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Escaping Exodus"
This one is the 6th or 7th of the author’s series of submarine-warfare-focused novels that revolve around ultra-skilled and heroic US Navy officer Jerry Mitchell. This one is set in the very near-future (2021) and, like many military thrillers, imagines a future ‘improvement’ on existing technology to create a more dangerous weapon that Mitchell and […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Arctic Gambit"
Today I Am Carey by Martin L. Shoemaker (SF Novel, March 2019). The idea of the android/robot/Artificial Intelligence that is given or develops human emotions has been a recurrent trope since the genre’s pulp era, if not earlier. “I, Robot” (the short story from the 1930’s, not the title of the later Asimov collection) comes immediately […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Today I Am Carey"
Green Valley by Louis Greenberg (SF novel, June 2019). Greenberg’s novel is about a near-future where most of the world’s people have rejected the whole idea of the high-tech, always-connected and always-monitored Information Age. The book opens about a decade after this overwhelming popular uprising against the surveillance state, up to and including a ban on […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Green Valley"
Mission to Methone by Les Johnson (SF novel, February 2018). A lot of near-future space-centered fiction is focused on the prospect of asteroid mining–or at least, as in this case, that theme is used a springboard into the plot. In 2065, Chris Holt is a (so-far) Earthbound scientist using robotic probes to survey various space rocks […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Mission to Methone"
Permafrost by Alastair Reynolds (SF Novel, March 2019). I’m likely to catch flak from purists by tagging a time travel novel as “hard SF.” But in this case the author has gone all-out to present a fairly rigorous theoretical basis for how it’s achieved. No physical bodies are dispatched to what used to be part of […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Permafrost"
Delta-V by Daniel Suarez (Hard SF Novel, 2019). Delta-V is a fine example of high-tech and relentlessly ‘hard science’ near-future adventure. Suarez portrays a variety of environments on earth and in space with consistently sure-handed and detailed writing. He does not skimp on human interactions or get so lost in the plot that characterization is neglected. He opens […]Read more "BOOK REVIEW: Delta-V"