Author Archives: Alex R. Howe

About Alex R. Howe

I'm a full-time astrophysicist and a part-time science fiction writer.

What Is a Sport?

The Tokyo Olympics begin tomorrow, and while the Games this year have become a messy political boondoggle thanks to COVID (among other things), the likes of which is beyond the scope of this blog, I thought it was time to … Continue reading

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Writer’s History #4 – Daniel Bensen Interview

Daniel Bensen is an author of science fiction, alternate history, and stories of speculative evolution. In this interview, we discuss his new book, Interchange, sequel to his debut novel, Junction, and other writings. Dan’s website. Dan’s book recommendations: The Vorkosigan … Continue reading

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Book Review: Interchange by Daniel M. Bensen

Last year, I reviewed the book Junction by Daniel M. Bensen, a sci-fi work centered around speculative evolution, that is, imagining how life might evolve on an alternate Earth or other worlds. Junction is a world filled with wormholes connecting … Continue reading

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#30 – Arthur Clarke’s Comeback

After the New Wave era drew to a close, the older authors of the Golden Age continued to produce new works, but Arthur C. Clarke made the strongest comeback, with some of his most famous books coming from his later … Continue reading

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#29 – Larry Niven and the Return of Hard Sci-Fi

By 1970, the New Wave in science fiction had made peace with a surge of new hard sci-fi works and writers. At the forefront of this trend was Larry Niven, who took a unique path in hard sci-fi by proposing … Continue reading

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Ringworld Theory: Did Teela Brown Have Bad Luck?

In Larry Niven’s Ringworld, the alien Puppeteers have secretly been selectively breeding humans for being lucky, which they believe (correctly) is actually a psychic probability manipulation ability. (This seems a little weird because natural selection already involves a lot of … Continue reading

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The Science of Project Hail Mary

Andy Weir’s latest book, Project Hail Mary, is a very good hard science fiction tale about a journey to another solar system in search of a way to save Earth from disaster. Mr. Weir always does mostly pretty good science … Continue reading

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Essay: Who Was Really the Richest Person in History?

Every so often, some business magazine or other notable publication will publish a list of the richest historical figures of all time. Topping the list is usually John D. Rockefeller, the founder of Standard Oil and the first person ever to earn a billion United States dollars. … Continue reading

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Writer’s History #3 – Dr. Benjamin Stevens Interview

Dr. Benjamin Stevens is a professor of classical studies who researches the relationship between the ancient/classical tradition and science fiction and fantasy. In this wide-ranging interview, we discuss what makes sci-fi distinctive, classicism and modernity, ancient aliens, and more. Dr. … Continue reading

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Book Review: Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Andy Weir, of The Martian and Artemis fame recently put out his third novel, Project Hail Mary. In his most expansive work yet, Weir takes us out of the Solar system entirely to meet Ryland Grace, an astronaut who wakes … Continue reading

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