A few months ago—before the shelter in place started, but not long before—I started watching The Expanse. This is an adaptation of the science fiction book series of the same name; the first season (mostly) follows the plot of the first book, Leviathan Wakes, which I read last year during my recovery from The Event. I say it “mostly” follows the plot of Leviathan Wakes because it includes characters and subplots I’ve never seen before, which is what’s making me a little reluctant to watch too much of the series just yet, because …
When adaptations are involved, I usually try to read the book before watching the adaptation, so that I can properly position the adaptation somewhere on “the book was better”* spectrum. (By this measure, The Expanse is pretty good.)
So this week I was reading Spin, the Hugo award-winning novel by Robert Charles Wilson, in which mysterious aliens give Earth the Krikkit treatment by encasing it in a “membrane” that induces an extremely steep time differential between what’s inside and what’s outside. Hilarity ensues.
So this week I’m continuing my recent spree of reading translated works* with The Three-Body Problem, by Cixin Liu (or Liu Cixin, depending). As you may be able to guess by the author’s name, this is a Chinese science fiction novel.
This week I started reading Damnificados, by J.J. Amaworo Wilson, in which terrorists attack a Christmas party in a skyscraper and … No, wait, sorry, wrong story. The actual plot is that a group of “damnificados” — defined by the book blurb as “vagabonds and misfits” — takes over an abandoned building and basically turns it into a vertical city. If this reminds you of the Oakland Bay Bridge from William Gibson’s “Bridge” trilogy, then, uh, you may be me. Or you may be Elizabeth Hand.
So this week we were watching Pacific Rim: Uprising, the sequel to Pacific Rim, Guillermo del Toro‘s film about giant robots (AKA jaegers) battling giant monsters (AKA kaiju) in and around the Pacific Ocean. Guillermo del Toro, sadly, did not return for this film, but the jaegers and kaiju did, oh yeah, you betcha.
It’s been quite a while since I reached into my giant pile of rejection letters, so today I spun up random.org and it told me to pick the third letter from the “L” folder. As it turns out, this is a rejection from the magazine The Leading Edge for my short story “Draw”, a science fiction Western, previously excerpted in a Teaser Tuesday.