Category Archives: Science Fiction

Short Story & Review: “The Midshipman”

Book Reviews – The short story, “The Midshipman” (you can read it at the link to the left), was published on the Baen Books website and was written by David Drake (http://david-drake.com). Mr. Drake has published twelve novels in his Republic of Cinnabar Navy (RCN) series. This short story is set in the Universe created for that series.

I categorize this short story as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in the future. The main character is Able Spacer Ellie Woetjans of the RCN Battleship Renown. It gives a brief tale of her experiences with new Midshipman Mckinnon.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 25 minutes I spent reading this science fiction story. I have read several of Mr. Drake’s novels and have enjoyed them. I give this short story a 5 out of 5.

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Star Wars Scenes Recreated with Toys

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Star Wars – My son sent me a link to the article “It’s no Jedi mind trick, these iconic Star Wars scenes are all toys” today. I think that this photographer has put together some amazing photos considering he is only using Star Wars toys and a little Photoshop magic to create his photos. If you are a Star Wars fan you will likely enjoy them.

I included one of the photos from the article above, but if you follow the link to the article there are 39 more photos you can view.

 

Listen to Orson Welles’ “War of the Worlds”

I always liked H. G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds“. I read the novel many years ago. I had never heard this famous radio play version in its entirety. The original broadcast was made on Halloween eve in 1938. Many who listened to the dramatization believed that Earth truly was being invaded and caused some panic amongst the listeners.

If you like Science Fiction, especially vintage science fiction, you will enjoy listening to this recording.

Book Review: “Crash”

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Book Reviews – “Crash” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by N. S. Shajay (https://www.nsshajay.com). Shajay (a pen name) has published three novels. This is the first book of the “Status Unknown Trilogy”.

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 and Mature Language. The story is set in the far future. The primary character is Captain Patrick Knox.

A long war is over and humanity is beginning to spread out into the universe again. Knox is taking a ship full of colonists to a new world. He was acclaimed as a Hero during the war, now he just wants to take his passengers to their new home and settle down there himself. They have to make one small detour along the way to deliver a load of convicts to a prison world, but that is supposed to be quick and easy.

A bomb set by a terrorist from a group against further human expansion takes the spaceship off course. It crashes on an uncharted, but a human compatible world. Now Knox must take charge and lead those who lived through the crash in survival. They find that not only are there significant threats indigenous to their new home but the convicts, many of which are convicted murderers, offer there own threat.

Complicating matters is the fact that the only Doctor to have survived the crash is a convicted serial killer. She is brilliant and beautiful, but no one knows how far she can be trusted.

I thoroughly enjoyed the nearly 8 hours I spent reading this 272-page science fiction thriller. I like the plot and the mix of characters in this story. It is a mixture of survival and action. The cover art is OK, but I think there are other images that would have been better. I look forward to reading more stories in this universe. I give this novel a 4.4 (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).

Book Review: “Sheppard’s Quest”

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Book Reviews – “Sheppard’s Quest” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Gary Caplan. Mr. Caplan has published seven novels. This is the third in his “The Alliance of Worlds ” 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 far future. The primary character is Alliance fleet officer Robert Sheppard.

When new allies, the Talcon, ask for assistance, Sheppard attempts to help them out. He and his ship are on the way to confront the Varlons. While in route he has the time to follow up on the Talcon request and investigate why animals are mysteriously disappearing from their Starcity ship. Before long, Sheppard and his task force join their allies in a confrontation with the Varlons.

I thought the 5.5 hours I spent reading this 239-page science fiction novel were interesting. This is supposed to primarily be a space opera tale of military confrontation in space. There was some of that, but this certainly wasn’t “The Lost Fleet”. For me, the story kept going in too many directions: the mystery of the lost animals, the confrontation with the Varlons, and the mysticism of the Star Knights. This book does read pretty well as a stand-alone novel even though it is the third book in a series. In summary, this novel was close, but not quite there yet. The cover art is OK, but I think a better image could have been chosen. I give this novel a 3.4 (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).

Book Review: “Restless Lightning”

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Book Reviews – “Restless Lightning” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Richard Baker (https://richardbakerauthor.com/). Mr. Baker has published more than ten novels. This is the second novel in his “Breakers of Empire” 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 and Mature Situations. The story is set in the far future. The primary character is Lieutenant Sikander North of the Commonwealth Navy.

A little time has passed since North’s first adventures in “Valiant Dust“. Now he has been sent to the alien Tzoru Empire. He takes the opportunity while planetside to rekindle the flame with Dr. Duston. While on the surface he is inadvertently drawn into a rebellion that no one saw coming. In the resulting conflict, he finds himself in danger time and again. He also finds himself working with and dependent on Dremish forces that only a short time ago he was battling with.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 11.5 hours I spent reading this 432-page science fiction tale. This novel is a mix of political intrigue, space vessel combat, and heavily armed combat on the surface. I generally like the character of North, but he is not your perfect hero. I like this series. It reminds me of the “Honor Harrington” novels. I think the cover art is OK. 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).

Book Review: “Lost Solace”

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Book Reviews – “Lost Solace” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Karl Drinkwater (https://www.karldrinkwater.uk). Mr. Drinkwater has published 4 novels. A sequel to this novel is due out this year.

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 far future. The young woman, Opal, has stolen a spacecraft with advanced AI capabilities. She is searching for a Lost Ship – one that has disappeared in Nullspace and suddenly returned.

She finds what she thinks is a Lost Ship and gears herself up to explore it. She doesn’t have much time. The ship is being drawn into the gravity well of a neutron star. She finds something there that she wasn’t expecting and which puts her very existence at risk. Her exploration of the ship is further threatened by the arrival of a military force. She and her ship AI, Clarissa, must find a way to survive.

I thought that the 5.5 hours I spent reading this 274-page science fiction novel were interesting. Because of the eerie setting for the novel, this is almost as much of a horror novel as it is science fiction. While I like the AI Clarissa, I am not as big a fan of Opal herself. The plot was interesting, but not outstanding. The cover art was OK. I give this novel a 3.4 (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).

Science Fiction Art: Command Deck, by Krystian Biskup

I like Science Fiction and enjoy the occasional piece of art in that genre. I saw this today and thought I would pass it on.

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Command Deck, by Krystian Biskup. Click here for more of the artist’s work!

Click the picture for full-size. I find lots inspiration in artwork, and I share the best pieces I find here so that others may enjoy and perhaps be inspired by them as well.

Some of these pieces have inspired my writing, or beautifully frame some concept or another that I may want or have already written about. I present them here without commentary so they may inspire you without the burden of my perspective, but if you are curious as to my thoughts on any piece or whish to share your own comments are always welcome.

If you’re interested in more Science Fiction Artwork shared previously on my blog, the provided link will take you to an index of them.

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Short Science Fiction Film “Ostiary”

Short Films – I came across the short (9:16) animated science fiction film “Ostiary” recently. This film was posted to YouTube in September of 2018 by Ghaffar Studios. The synopsis:

Stranded and running low on food, a space traveler decides to venture out into a planet’s mysterious environment in search of nutrition. However, he soon finds himself in a situation that’s far more dire.

This is an interesting film, but not great. I checked IMDB, but it has no rating for this film yet.