Showing posts from December, 2016

Intriguing Radio Bursts from Deep Space

Source Article: Science News

Eighteen fast radio bursts since 2007, each lasting a few milliseconds, have been recorded from the Christopher Crockett, is the repeating nature of these transmissions - which indicates these transmissions are not isolated to a one-time event.
same place. Where are they coming from? The source of these strange transmissions is over 3 billion - yes that Billion with a capital B - LIGHT YEARS away, in the constellation Auriga. The interesting thing about these, according to

Some of these intercepted transmissions were even picked up right here in West Virginia, at the Green Bank Observatory. It is suspected that these bursts of radio waves may be from neutron stars, but it is purely suspicion at this point. Green Bank Observatory made news in 2016 when it went 'rogue' after the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Green Bank's parent organization, cut funding in efforts to tighten its fiscal belt. This was quite a shock to Green Bank Observato…

Review: Red Mars

Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Red Mars is a long, albeit good hard SciFi read that takes the reader deep into the ruddy landscape of Mars via a massive cast of characters. I must admit that I found the central love triangle a tiresome repetition of soap opera-like dialogue, but the level of realism combined with the scope of the work is truly admirable.

The author of Red Mars, Kim Stanley Robinson, clearly did the necessary homework to displace the reader from our natural environment and deposit us deep into the vast desert-like terrain of Mars. The multicultural facets explored along the way, and their inclusion into the martian mindset, make this a work of SciFi artistry.

While a bit drawn out, the perseverant reader will walk away from Red Mars with his head held high, a mouthful of Martian dust, and a deeper understanding of what it is to tackle a completely alien world and redefine it in only a way humans might.

A very good read for the dedi…

Mess-Cranking in the North Atlantic

Gaeta, Italy is a quaint little Italian town just south of Rome and I knew it as home for a little while. The USS Belknap, flagship of the US Sixth Fleet, called Gaeta her home port. I remember watching the pier, and the rocks I had sat upon so many times, drift away for the last time as we left Gaeta for the last time in November of 1994. Those rocks had become my solace. I would sit on those rocks, high above the rolling tide of the ocean’s waves, and listen to my Sony Discman while scratching out plots for short stories, writing poetry, or just daydreaming about anything and everything. We were heading back to the United States, and Belknap was heading for the mothball fleet. We passed the Rock of Gibraltar which, after all I had heard about it, was a bit of a disappointment. I remember being excited about going out on the Atlantic for the first time; my first ‘crossing of the Pond,’ as sailors like to say. Let me just say this here, ‘Crossing the Pond’ in November­—especially the…

Review: Armada

Armada by Ernest Cline
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Armada! A fun and exciting adventure worthy of Alex Rogan and his Gunstar in The Last Starfighter!

Armada is a geek's paradise, full of 80's and 90's pop culture references, action, adventure and heroism that makes the reader want to find a way to get X-Wing Vs Tie Fighter, or some similar game, out of mothballs and fire up some star-fighting par excellence. A wild and reckless ride into the virtual reality of video games, Armada escorts the geeky reader into a world where anything is possible.

Highly Recommended!

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Review: The Screwtape Letters

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

While The Screwtape Letters is definitely outside my reading norm, as I am not given to reading Christian Apologetic novels, it was necessary for the research in my current writing project.

Ostensibly, The Screwtape Letters appear contrived to move one toward the ideas and principles of Christianity by highlighting the mechanistic plotting and manipulative nature of the demon Screwtape and his nephew Wormwood. The real gem of this novel lies in the way C.S. Lewis examines the human condition from the outsider perspective of Uncle Screwtape. In my opinion, there is some real sociological gold within the pages of The Screwtape Letters.

Royce Sears

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Review: The Plot to Save Socrates

The Plot to Save Socrates by Paul Levinson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A Time Twisting Tale of Epic Proportions

The Plot to Save Socrates is a head spinning time travel mystery that leads the reader deep into an action packed rabbit hole of cascading paradoxical events via a cast of characters assembled from across the ages. An intellectually stimulating read of epic proportions, The Plot to Save Socrates draws the reader in and keeps the pages turning all the way through. Highly Recommended!!

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Thoughts on the Movie Arrival - Multiculturalism and Humanity's Future

I'm a sucker for a good Science Fiction movie, and I always have been. Arrival was not just good Science Fiction, but great Science Fiction. Language shapes who we are and how we think. It not only defines our culture, but it defines our species. What we communicate, and how we communicate it, defines who and what we are to those around us.

In Arrival, we see the use of the word 'weapon' change the entire nature of the conversation almost instantaneously. We see the world diving into chaos because of the arrival of these alien craft. We see a church setting itself ablaze, mass hysteria, looting, rioting, and wide-spread panic worldwide. Would we react this way to an actual event? Probably, and I imagine it would be even worse than what we see in the movie.


As Arrival points out, we're a divided species. We're divided along race, gender, nationality, religion, and a multitude of other divisions. We've seen these issues arise time and time again, and just wh…

Happy Writing Holiday Season!

The Holidays are approaching fast, this is the thought I woke up with this morning as I tried to go back to sleep, despite the eighty-pound dog taking up most of my leg room. What does a thought like that really mean to someone like me?

I'm former Navy, and I think I remember one or two Holiday seasons where I wasn't on duty. I am now a Registered Nurse, and my thirteen-year-old son lives 400 miles away, with his Mother. The Holidays do not carry the same meaning for him anymore, not at this age. I volunteer to work during the Holidays so my co-workers, young mothers with young children, can spend the Holidays with their children. I think that's only fair. Their children are only young once. They should get to spend the Holidays with their children, and I'll gladly work over the Holidays for them so their kids get to have Mommy at home. I mean, what kid wants to spend Christmas Day waiting for Mom to get home from work so they can open their presents?

And lastly, I am …

Review: The Enemy of an Enemy

The Enemy of an Enemy by Vincent Trigili
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I just couldn't do it. I couldn't finish this book...

It started out interesting enough, and the premise seemed strong at first. The dialogue was stiff and formal, the main character grew more annoying as I continued reading, and then a glaring plot hole just pushed me over the edge.

The main character is a Mary Sue...he's proficient at everything, weaknesses? flaws? Anything to make the character relatable? Nope. I found the main character to be a combination of Luke Skywalker, Captain Kirk, and Harry Potter.

Rather than go on, I'm just going to leave it there and let you decide. Based on some of the other reviews, some folks have enjoyed it. The Enemy of an Enemy was, sadly, just not my cup of tea.
Marking it as Read to get it off Reading List.

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