Saturday, December 18, 2010

Looking for Sci Fi by Women Authors?

This cat sculpture
by Sue Lannen
reflects the several
sci fi cats
featured in the list.

This book list of YA science fiction features women authors. The types of sci fi ranges from military to romance to coming-of-age to epic to mixed types. Although suitable for YA, many are stories good enough for adults to enjoy, too.

Enjoy a good read. Then give the book to a teenager.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Courtesan Prince by Lynda Williams
A Book Review by Valerie Coskrey

I recently discovered a new science fiction universe to explore. The deftly built Okal Rel Universe is visited through the books of the Okal Rel Saga by Lynda Williams and her proteges. The central character of the saga is introduced in The Courtesan Prince as Von who is, well, a popular gigolo of the royal ladies of the court. He is also a young man who was stolen at birth and is just discovering his specialized genotypic heritage. He is, unbeknownst to anyone, a Sevolite, genetically engineered and of royal descent.

In a society with legal prostitution, courtesans are used openly by society's elite. This is the story of how one such man becomes a popular lover, a valued friend, a protector of children, and a spaceship pilot. It is the story of a society in chaos and of its promise of better days with a new leader. It is a story of how contact between planetary societies is reestablished after centuries of mutual avoidance following a destructive war. And, finally, it is the story of the relationships that are possible when society sets artificial taboos on who is allowed to love and what types of sex are permissible.

It is not a story rife with explicit descriptions of sexual acts, but there are numerous sexual encounters and the development of a few romantic-love relationships. There is an underlying theme of the consequences of abuse and the victim's emotional growth needed to cope with an abusive past and present. The book has numerous characters allowing for a variety of stories to be told and relationships to be examined, from both homosexual and heterosexual perspectives; from the ugliness of abuse to the passivity of prostitution, to the passion of infatuation, to the caring of friendship and the love of mates.

Lynda Williams builds a cohesive universe populated with real people in real, slightly dysfunctional societies, with believable interactions and adventures. It is an action-packed adventure with sword fights, politics, murder, spaceship battles, justice and betrayals.

I enjoyed it and plan to read the others in the series. The Okal Rel series spans about 15 books to date, including some written by proteges of Lynda Williams. They can be purchased through; but to get the list of all books available, visit the Okal Rel Universe website.


Much of this text is also in my blog Dirt Poor Books. Note: I updated the Amazon links and added labels to this post in July of 2014. Lynda Williams had written several books since then, and has greatly advanced the saga.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

My Article on Robert J. Sawyer and his Books Wake and Far-Seer

I have posted an article on Robert J. Sawyer, science fiction author, on the RFF Reflections blog. I invite you to read it. He writes exciting tales of aliens and of computer networks.

Of his books displayed on his website, these are the ones I want to read first.

. .. Then I would want to read Calculating God followed by Illegal Alien. Then I would want to finish the trilogies and maybe start on the Hominids series.

I suspect that the ones listed above will be suitable for teens. Far-Seer has been reviewed as a YA novel.  Wake's main character is 15.

Check them out and tell me what you think.

My Book Review for Krysia Anderson's Misfit Leaves Home

Today I posted a book review for Misfit Leaves Home, a sci fi novella in Lynda William's Okal Rel Universe and written by teenager Krysia Anderson. The book review for this charming YA and middle school novella can be found in the Reading for the Future Reflections blog. Check it out.

The book is hard to find and must often be specially ordered even at the larger bookstores Barnes & Noble and Borders. But you can get it here!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Noah's Ark and Climate Change

© W. Sterling
Centuries ago, the Bible reports, Noah was told by God to get ready for a severe climate change. He was instructed to use technology to save himself, his family, and a boatload of animals from the ravages of an impending flood resulting from an extended period of excessive rain. Yes, he was told to prevent the disaster of drowning by building a huge boat. This is technology in action. Technology that can save man from a natural disaster.

Today we can use technology to save ourselves from the ravages that will result from climate change. Let us plan and implement solutions soon.

Other titles to help us understand:

Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity

Climate Change: Picturing the Science