Category Archives: Science Fiction

Book Review: “Singularity”

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(See all of my Book Reviews) – “Singularity” eBook was published in 2019 and was written by Rick Lakin (http://www.ricklakin.com). Mr. Lakin has published two novels. This is the second of his “StarCruiser Brilliant” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘G’. The story is set in the not too distant future on Earth. The primary character is Jennifer Gallagher, actress, tech entrepreneur, and Brilliant crew member.

Gallagher is incredibly successful at everything she tries and is only 17. The Brilliant’s crew meets with the Blue Angels and does some incredible flying with them. They also debut some of the capabilities of Brilliant before the public. They must contend with a presidential candidate that is campaigning against robots. They must also go on a deep space mission to confront a bioterrorism attack.

I thought that the 7.5+ hours I spent reading this 386-page science fiction novel were interesting. This is a Young Adult novel and one that seems to be targeted at the very young end of that category. While second in the series, this novel reads pretty well on its own. I felt that the plot seemed to be targeted more at the grade school age reader. For me, the plot was far too simple. The chosen cover art is OK. I give this novel a 3.3 (rounded down to a 3) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Wednesday SciFi Flix: “KORTEX”

(See my other Science Fiction and Short Films posts) – I came across the short (16:03) movie “KORTEX” a while back. This is a science fiction film set in a post-apocalyptic world. The synopsis per IMDB:

In a post-Apocalyptic world, a man finds a robot.

While this isn’t the best short film, it is pretty good. It received a rating of 5.7/10 on IMDB.

Book Review: “The Anahita Chronicles Book I: Mercury”

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(See all of my Book Reviews) – “The Anahita Chronicles Book I: Mercury” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Samuel Blondahl (https://www.blondahl.ca). Mr. Blondahl has published three novels with this being the first of this “Anahita Chronicles” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains a few scenes of Violence. The story is set in the not too distant future.

A new engine that will enable humans to travel great distances in space is about to be tested. The test is sabotaged, and instead of going to Mars, the spacecraft Mercury ends up near a habitable planet deep in space. They struggle to repair their ship enough to make it back to Earth. Due to the damage suffered from the earlier sabotage and unexpected events, the crew finds themselves stranded on the planet’s surface.

They have been able to send the unmanned Mercury hurtling back towards Earth and asking for help. Now they must find a way to survive. Not only do they find that the planet is hospitable to humans, but they soon discover that they are not the only intelligent lifeforms on the planet.

I enjoyed the 8.5 hours I spent reading this 409-page science fiction novel. I liked this novel. There are several plot threads going on: survival on an alien planet, a conspiracy back on Earth, and first contact with an alien species. While the story in this novel does reach a conclusion, there are threads of the plot left to be explored and resolved in future books in the series. I give this novel a 4.3 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Wednesday SciFi Flix: “Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet”

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(See my other Science Fiction posts) – I came across the movie “Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet” a few days ago on YouTube. The movie came out in 1965. It was adapted from the Soviet science fiction movie Planeta Bur (Planet of Storms), scripted by Aleksandr Kazantsev from his novel. The synopsis per IMDB:

In 2020, after the colonization of the moon, the spaceships Vega, Sirius, and Capella are launched from Lunar Station 7. They are to explore Venus under the command of Professor Hartman, but an asteroid collides and explodes Capella. The leadership Vega stays orbiting and sends the astronauts Kern and Sherman with the robot John to the surface of Venus, but they have problems with communication with Dr. Marsha Evans in Vega. The Sirius lands in Venus and Commander Brendan Lockhart, Andre Ferneau and Hans Walter explore the planet and are attacked by prehistoric animals. They use a vehicle to seek Kern and Sherman while collecting samples from the planet. Meanwhile, John helps the two cosmonauts to survive in the hostile land.

I watched the movie today while I was doing some python programming. I’m glad I had something else to do as this is not a very good movie. The IMDB rating is only 3.6/10.

If you want to watch it yourself, it was still available on YouTube when I wrote this post. I will warn you though that you will wish you had the hour and 14 minutes back.

Teaser for Star Wars Episode IX Released

(See my other Star Wars and Trailers posts) –  The first ‘teaser’ for the upcoming “Star Wars IX – The Rise of Skywalker” has been released. The only synopsis thus far on IMDB:

The final chapter of the saga from a galaxy far, far away.

The film will be released this December. I’m looking forward to it.

Wednesday SciFi Flix: “Red Planet Mars”

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(Read all of my Science Fiction posts) – I came across the 1952 science fiction movie “Red Planet Mars” a few days ago on YouTube. The synopsis per IMDB:

An American scientist is able to contact and communicate with Mars with shattering political, economic, and spiritual repercussions.

The movie is set in that time after World War II when the US is in a cold war with the Soviets. In this film, the American scientist Chris Cronyn is using technology developed by the German Franz Calder. Calder has been labeled a war criminal but is secretly continuing his work aided by the Russians. Cronyn at first only gets his messages repeated back to him, but eventually is able to communicate with the civilization on Mars. As the answers received from Mars reach the press the answers create both political and economic upheavals. But then messages begin to arrive of a religious nature causing an impact worldwide.

Are the messages really coming from Mars or is everyone being duped by Calder?

At the time I am writing this, you can still view the movie on YouTube per the link above. I thought that this was an above average science fiction story for the time. Unfortunately, IMDB only gives the film a 4.9/10 rating.

Book Review: “Aether’s Call”

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(See all of my Book Reviews) – “Aether’s Call” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by John Farr. This is Mr. Farr’s first publication.

I received a copy of this novella through a promotion by the author. I categorize this book as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in the future with the primary character being Roy the cook on the new Earth spacecraft Starr.

Roy was conscripted onto the Starr. The only job he could perform was as the cook and even that he has trouble with. Everything he attempts ends in failure and Starr’s Captain is ready to dispose of Roy out an airlock. Back on Earth Roy’s ex-wife, Cynthia is conspiring with a scientist. Together with the science officer on the Starr, they are plotting to take down their government.

I spent 2+ hours reading this 158-page novella. It has all of the misconceptions of space travel one might associate with science fiction written in the ’40s or ’50s. The plot was confusing and I don’t think much of the major characters. It does have nice cover art, but the art has little to do with the story. I give this novel a 2 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Wednesday SciFi Flix: “Renegade Kenobi”

Short Films – The short (4:48) Star Wars fan film “Renegade Kenobi” was uploaded to YouTube in June of 2016 by Michael Ryan Hahn (the films writer and director). The synopsis:

Ben Kenobi’s mother encounters a notorious Sith Lord who wants to change the fate of the galaxy.

I have watched several Star Wars fan films over the past few months. I have to say that I think that this is one of the better ones.

Book Review: “Day 115 on an Alien World”

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Book Reviews – “Day 115 on an Alien World” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Jeannette Bedard (http://jeannettebedard.com). This is Ms. Bedard’s first novel and the first in her “Settler Chronicles” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in the future. The primary character is Margo Murphy.

Murphy has served in the military but was dishonorably discharged. She has signed on to a colony ship for a new start on a new world. But then ‘accidents’ start to happen. Their ship crashes on the target planet and colonists begin to die. Murphy does not know who to trust, but she feels strongly that there is a saboteur amongst the colonist. Can she survive long enough to determine who is behind the deaths?

I thoroughly enjoyed the 8+ hours I spent reading this 362-page science fiction mystery novel. I liked the characters created for this novel, and I liked the plot. I look forward to reading the next installment in this series. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).