Chris Hadfield is a man’s man. Test pilot, astronaut, commander of the International Space Station, guitarist, and most importantly endowed with the perfect Canadian Pilot mustache. This book is part memoir, part advice text, part space exploration tome. I have long admired Colonel Hadfield. His videos from the International Space Station were inspirational and he is […]
The year is 2035, and the first manned mission to Mars is getting underway. During the long transit, disaster strikes and our heroes must find a way to survive. While the story itself is engaging in an adventure novel kind of way, the prose is not. Much of the dialogue feels written to explain things […]
A research team based based in Switzerland has discovered a way to disconnect the mind from the body and project it to other places and times, even into the future. They call it an “ascent”, and it allows access to secret information hidden away in vaults, as well as knowledge of future events. Clandestine elements of the US […]
The fourth and last book in Black Tide Rising sees the beginning of major zombie clearance on the US mainland, with the retaking of some large coastal bases, and planning for the re-establishment of proper civilization beyond survival. Given the clearance of the bases, more and more surviving higher officers start to appear, some of whom are […]
Alex Lomax is a private investigator in New Klondike, a frontier town on Mars. The place is a bit of a dump, existing only due to the rush on ancient Martian fossils, and Lomax is its stereotypical gumshoe. One day, a beautiful woman walks into his office. She is a “transfer”, a human who has transferred […]
A collection of short memoir essays from Wil Wheaton, who played Wesley Crusher on Star Trek – The Next Generation. I enjoyed the longer piece about learning to love his past in Star Trek because of, and despite, the fans. However the rest, while endearing glimpses into a lovely family life, were sweet but unfortunately unexceptional. […]
A college professor and Hemingway enthusiast becomes embroiled in a scheme to forge Hemingway’s lost early manuscripts. So far, a fairly ordinary story. But then things turn unexpectedly into a journey across parallel universes. Solid work from Mr. Haldeman, but nothing of particular note. The first two thirds are rather enjoyable, but the ending left […]
Elderly Robert Gu wakes as if from a long, dreamy haze, cured of his Alzheimers. He was a renowned poet and academic, but now must learn to explore a new world. It is the current connected world run wild. Almost everyone “wears”, meaning wears smart clothes and contact lenses. Through these means and ever present […]
This novella is set several decades before Ishmael’s adventures in Trader’s Tales from the Golden Age of the Solar Clipper. Captain Gunderson and his crew run into a small rock way out in the Deep Dark, leaving the jump engine disabled. They are off the shipping lanes and slowly running out of consumables. This was […]
After a decade on the William Tinker, where he has progressed from third mate to first mate, Ishmael finally sits for Captain and shortly thereafter receives command of the Agamemnon, a small cargo ship with only eight crew. The Aganemnon has a bad reputation. It is crewed by troublemakers and misfits, and profits have been abysmal. Unlike […]
After an accident involving a coronal mass ejection cripples the ship and threatens the lives of the entire crew, Ishmael is set to work investigating why the safety systems failed. He is now fully rated, meaning a higher share of profits, but the officers pressure him into thinking about the officer’s academy. After the somewhat disappointing Half […]
Teenager Ishmael Wang’s mother dies suddenly and as a result he has ninety days before he is booted off the company-owned planet where he lives. One of the few options he has is to join the merchant navy. This book purposefully eschews space opera staples like aliens, ship-to-ship battles and other disasters for a less […]
It is one thousand years since the founding of the Mongol Empire, and it now spans both the Earth and a vast galactic empire. A secret agent is sent to a remote sector to investigate problems with the interstellar transit system used by humanity; a system left behind by an ancient race. The setting is […]
This novella is a snapshot in the life of David Draper, teenage nephew of Gunny Draper from Caliban’s War. The story is all right, but nothing special. Mostly interesting as color if you’re reading The Expanse books.
This “companion novella” to the Kris Longknife saga is set at the same time as Furious and follows the efforts of Special Agent Foile to assist Kris Longknife in her efforts to stop her grandfather’s trade flotilla. Note: Shepherd has previously written about our heroine’s great-grandfather Raymond under his real name, Mike Moscoe. Fine reading assuming have read […]
This “companion novella” takes place between Kris Longknife – Daring and the upcoming Kris Longknife – Furious. It is not a fantastic piece but serves as a good way to bring readers up to date. The story focuses on General “Trouble” Tordon, one of Kris’s great-grandfathers, and his involvement in the events on her homecoming […]
Book three seamlessly segues from the end of Center of Gravity. Admiral Koenig leads the battlegroup further into Sh’daar territory, towards the enigmatic center of the Sh’daar civilization. Meanwhile Lieutenant Grey’s personal odyssey continues. I was disappointed with the last book in the trilogy. The action is still good, but it is upstaged by the […]
The sequel to Princess of Wands sees “Soccermom-osaurus” Mrs. Barbara Everette as an experienced FLUF agent, defending America from evil supernatural and mystic creatures. As in the first book, this one also takes the form of three interlinked stories, the middle one of which is set (sort of) at Dragon*con. Ringo always delivers thrills and […]
Rather simplistic novel depicting a mission to Mars. Goes hand in hand with The Case for Mars. A fun light read if you are into the space program.
Subtitled “The Plan to Settle the Red Planet and Why We Must”, this is non-fiction detailing how and why man should colonize Mars. Zubrin is a rocket scientist and the founder of the Mars Society, and thus knows what he is talking about.
So what happened after The Return of the Jedi? This series answers the question. If you are a Star Wars fan, you will want to pick this up. The writing won’t win any literary awards, much in the same way that the movies were not nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, but who cares? […]
Demon jumps ahead another 20 years after Wizard. Robin has returned to her home in the coven habitat. Chris has remained on Gaea, and is slowly turning into a creature more and more like a Titanide (a centaur race native to Gaea). Cirocco is still around, but no longer does Wizard work. Gaby is dead, […]
John Rolfe, a WWII veteran, inadvertently opens a portal to an alternate timeline in his Oakland, California, basement. He and his old war buddies proceed to conquer this version of the Earth. In the other timeline, Alexander the Great lived to a ripe old age and the white man never arrived in America. The most […]
I am not a big fantasy fan, but this does not read terribly much like fantasy. There is a definite scarcity of bearded wizards and annoying halflings. It’s more like a pirate/explorer story, and quite entertaining.
Book three in the Coyote series, this novel takes us once more to the colony planet Coyote. But there’s a new twist. Earth has developed a technology for instantaneous travel between stars, meaning close contact with Earth is possible once more. Coyote seems like paradise to inhabitants of Earth wracked with overcrowding and catastrophic climate […]