Author Archives: Alex R. Howe

About Alex R. Howe

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

Bonus Episode: More Alternate History

I missed a few important books in the previous episode on alternate history. Here is an overview of those works. Recommendation: “If Lee Had Not Won the Battle of Gettysburg” by Winston Churchill (yes, really). Other works discussed:The Grasshopper Lies … Continue reading

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#45 – Young Adult Dystopias

Dystopian fiction has been the core of young adult sci-fi for the past 15 years. In this episode, we explore how they got their start and what makes them so popular. Book recommendation: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins My analysis … Continue reading

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New Video: How to Terraform Venus

I recently wrote a peer-reviewed paper about a speculative way to terraform Venus. I got the idea last summer after Kurzgesagt made a video on the topic. I was originally just going to make a video of my own, but … Continue reading

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US Presidents: Corrected Link

I don’t normally make a separate post for corrections. In fact, I think this may be the first time. But I felt the need to do it here because I whiffed this one pretty badly. In my post on the … Continue reading

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#44 – The Children’s Sci-Fi Renaissance

Children’s science fiction was pretty sparse historically, but it began to take off in the 1990s. In this episode, we explore how sci-fi for kids has changed and expanded over the most recent generation. Book recommendations:Middle grade (ages 8-12): Zita the … Continue reading

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Children’s Sci-Fi: Marketing vs. Reality

Note: this is the third and final companion post to my upcoming podcast episode about children’s sci-fi. I should also note that these results are based specifically on Amazon listings, and I don’t know if they are truly reflective of … Continue reading

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Reading Levels and the Surprisingly Recent Stratification of Children’s Books

Note: this is the second of two three companion posts to Episode 44 of my podcast, Children’s Science Fiction. (I told you, this episode took a lot of research.) For the first post, click here. Today, children’s books—especially fiction books—are … Continue reading

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Episode 44 Delayed

Hi all. Unfortunately, I need to delay this week’s episode. Production was already running slow because it’s a long episode with a lot of supplemental material, as evidenced by the bonus blog posts. And, frankly, I’ve been a bit distracted … Continue reading

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Where Did School Book Fairs Come From?

Note: in preparing the next episode of my podcast, I had a surprising amount of supplemental material that was kind of off-topic and that I didn’t have time to talk about, so I decided to save it for the blog. … Continue reading

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#43 – Solar System Exploration

Hard sci-fi stories about the exploration of our solar system became more popular beginning in the 1990s. In this episode, we explore how these ideas rose to prominence and have developed over the years. Book recommendation: The Martian by Andy Weir. … Continue reading

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