Review: The Infinite Sea

After reading and enjoying The 5th Wave early in the summer, I was anticipating The Infinite Sea.

sfm_banner_02b (1)The start was slow for me. And confusing, because I wasn’t quite sure what was going on POV-wise, but I finally figured it out (I also remembered after a while that The 5th Wave had been in similar at first in these regards). What also often confused me were the action sequences. I would get lost with who was where and what exactly what was happening, but this happens to me frequently when I read action in books, so I don’t necessarily blame Rick Yancey so much for this.

Again, my favorite parts of The Infinite Sea, like The 5th Wave, were the psychological parts. There’s a really big plot reveal late in the novel that is a big game-changer for everything that happened and it really made my mind race with all the psychologicalness of it (yeah, I totally just made that word up). I think this is also the reason why my favorite part of the book ended up being the large section of the book that was from Ringer’s POV. At first I wasn’t sure how I would feel about it, but she is mentally processing a lot and trying to figure out the mind games, and after a while I really got into it.gr-the-infinite-seaThe 5th Wave is a pretty dark and gritty book, but I think this one is even darker and grittier. I definitely would not recommend it for young teenagers. It’s not solely for reasons of language or violence (though both are present), but because it just feels so hopeless and hard.

From a science fiction perspective… while this book continues the plot about aliens, it is so much more about humanity. But really, I think that’s really common in science fiction and why so many of us love and enjoy the genre. This book will definitely make you ask questions about ourselves.

Between the beginning and the fact that it was SO dark, I ended up not enjoying this one as much as the first installment, but I am definitely still really curious about how it will conclude and excited about the movies.

4stars2Content Advisory: Language (including strong language), violence, and off-screen sex. 

What are your thoughts on The Infinite Sea?

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Review: Edge of Tomorrow

Note: This movie seems to suffering from a title identity crisis, because in some places I’ve seen it’s called Live. Die. Repeat., which to my knowledge, is/was the tagline. I like the name Edge of Tomorrow better, and that’s the title the movie was originally presented to me as, and what it was titled as in the credits, so that is what I am calling it. 

sfm_banner_02b (1)Between my disappoint with Tom Cruise’s sci-fi flick Oblivion and not hearing too much (positive or negative) about this movie, I went in with somewhat low expectations, but hoping I would enjoy it. Thankfully, Edge of Tomorrow proved to be a well-told (not tiring) loop story with fascinating science fiction elements, featured in a world I wanted to learn more about, and with two protagonists I cared about.

edge_of_tomorrowAt the opening we see that the world is at war with aliens who have come here and invaded us. The focus isn’t on the aliens, though they are the reason the loop occurs. I won’t give away all the details with that plot element, but Rita acquired the ability to loop from a previous battle with the aliens, and then Cage acquires it this time around. And with this looping comes the objective to completely dismantle the aliens to where they lose the war and, hopefully, Cage nor anyone else will have to relive the bloody slaughtering over and over again.

Cage is not the most sympathetic character at first, which is intentional, but he certainly becomes one as he is forced to relive this battle over and over again, and then is finally able to train with and talk to Rita and they get further into their mission. Of course everything we see is abbreviated, but based on what we hear, I think it’s safe to say that Cage has to go through these couple of days for at least a year’s worth of time. Can you imagine how tiring that would be? Thankfully, they portrayed that as well. Cage is not a born hero. Rita isn’t either. They have been put in circumstances in which they are forced to survive and hopefully save the world.

I appreciated that the repeated content never grew stale, but Catge’s different choices and reactions helped make it always feel new. This can definitely be a problem with loop stories, and luckily this one was well-handled.

I don’t have any real complaints,  though my initial reaction to the ending made me go, “What?! That’s it?!” because it was quite abrupt. But really, what would have been the point of dragging it out at that point? Did I want this movie to turn into The Return of the King or something? Overall, the movie was definitely worth a watch, and I found it enjoyable and thought-provoking.

4stars2Have you seen Edge of Tomorrow? What are your thoughts?

 

Review: Interstellar

If you know me, you know how much I love Christopher Nolan. Inception has been my favorite movie probably since the day I first saw it in the theater, I loved what he did with Batman in The Dark Knight trilogy, and I loved the twisty-turny mind games of The Prestige. I am happy to report that Nolan is still at the top of his game with Interstellar. In one word, I would describe this movie as profound. In a few, I’d say it’s a deeply moving look at humanity. It both does and does not feel like a typical Nolan film; in many ways it looked and felt different, but the themes of love and tragedy and triumph and humanity that are present in all his films certainly resounded in Interstellar.

sfm_banner_02b (1)I went into this movie virtually blind. Everything I knew was from the trailers, and there is a lot missing from the trailers, including some of the casting that ended up totally surprising me when they showed up on screen. And since I’ve mentioned the casting, it was incredibly perfect. I am not a Matthew McConaughey fan by nature. I blame it on the movie The Wedding Planner and the fact that he is just very hyped and if I don’t love someone who is hyped I sometimes end up disliking them. That’s terrible, I know, but anyways, he really delivered in this film, along with everyone else.

interstellar2I want you to go into this movie mostly blind too, so I don’t want to give away too much. What I will say is that the future that Nolan created was scary, and not in some dystopia way, we’re talking in a the-Earth-is-dying way. There is this certain mysterious element going on, and to my surprise, I actually figured it out (the generalities, not the specifics) really early in the movie. However, it did not hinder my enjoyment of the film, and my husband did not figure it out. For those of you who have seen it, I will be curious to hear if you knew what was going on before the reveal. Despite having an idea of what was happening, the getting there and the how was still quite the ride.

I have heard a few murmurs about this film possibly getting Oscar nods, and I really, really hope it does. I don’t watch many Oscar contender movies, which I’m sure some people would say makes my taste in movies unrefined, but anyway, I could tell this movie was more of an Oscar-esque movie than most of the other movies I watch. There were several gratuitous space shots and other beautiful shots that really deserve recognition in addition to the great story and acting.

My biggest complaint against Nolan in the past has been his underdeveloped female protagonists, or at least me failing to connect with them. I did like Ariadne a good bit in Inception, and I thought Mal was a good character too, but otherwise, I have always been underwhelmed with the ladies in his movies. That is totally not the case with this movie. I LOVED Murphy, and I also liked Anne Hathway’s character Dr. Brand.

As I mentioned before, I had an idea of what generally might be happening, but before/during that reveal came some elements that, as my husband put it, were on the edge of going off the “deep end.” Yes, it’s science fiction, but it also seemed they were trying to make it pretty close to real science, and some of it started to feel like it might be a little hard to swallow. But thankfully I felt the “line” wasn’t crossed. I know that threshold is different for everyone, and heck, this whole paragraph might not even make sense to you, but I thought it was worth noting because it factors into my rating.

Lastly, I’ll vaguely mention the ending. The Prestige and Inception have the make-you-gasp, not-what-I-really-wanted-but-wow, open-ended sort of endings. The Dark Knight Rises ended so beautifully perfect (minus a certain someone in a cafe but I won’t go there now…). This is closer to a Prestige/Inception ending, but it plays out a little slower and doesn’t feel as shocking, if that makes sense. I didn’t dislike it, but it wasn’t his strongest ending.

This is a really fantastic story, and I am so pleased Nolan shared it with us. And of course, I am already eagerly anticipating what’s next from him. (Not Superman vs. Batman, which he is just producing, not writing/directing. Doesn’t count.) Not a perfect film, and not my favorite of his, but still very noteworthy. And it is definitely an experience in the theater, so go and watch it ASAP!

4-5stars-editHave you seen Interstellar? What are your thoughts on it?

Book Talk: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Since I am lazy lame, I did not prepare well for Sci-Fi Month and forwent an intro post. If you want to learn more about me and my history with sci-fi, check out my intro post from last yearsfm_banner_02b (1)I read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? about three months ago, but I thought I would wait to review it for Sci-Fi November. What I really intended to do was to write the review before but schedule to post it in November. That’s not what happened. I don’t feel like the book is fresh enough in my mind for me to give it a proper review, however, I want to talk about what I do remember (with some help from Wikipedia since I only remembered one character’s name from this book).

gr-doandroidsdreamI know it started off a little slow for me. The main character, Rick Deckard, is hooked up to a mood machine and wakes up happy. His wife, not so much. She seems to enjoy being crabby. Then there’s all this stuff about how they have an electrical sheep, which isn’t as good as having a real sheep, because animals are status symbols. I found the ideas semi-interesting but wasn’t really hooked, and I didn’t care much for the characters so far.

Then Rick goes to work (we might have gotten some John Isidore stuff before Rick’s work, I can’t remember, but we’ll get back to him) and we find out he bounty hunts androids, and androids can blend in with humans pretty well. But their big flaw is that they lack the empathy that humans do. I found this a lot more interesting.

We also learn about John Isidore, who I was confused about for a while because I thought he might be an android, but apparently he was just a not-so-bright human. He ends up helping some androids who take refuge in his apartment building as Rick attempts to track them down.

Most of Rick’s bounty hunting stuff was interesting, and there was one particular part I really got into where he was dealing with another “bounty hunter” that he had never heard of, and I won’t spoil anything there, but I was expecting quite a plot twist there, and was kind of disappointed when I didn’t get one. And unfortunately, after the non-plot twist, the story kind of went downhill for me. The John Isidore stuff was less interesting, and I felt so bad for him the whole time.

Then the ending was especially strange for me. Throughout the story there is talk of this guy named Mercer, and of his philosophy, which is known as Mercerism. I never really understood what the point of this man’s philosophies were, or why people cared about them, and I really don’t know why the novel ended with a strong emphasis on it. There were so many interesting aspects of the story, like colonization in space, the decaying of Earth, androids that pass as humans, and then it all ends with this dumb Mercer/electric animal subplot that I never actually understood in the first place. For all the things I have heard about this book and about Blade Runner, I was really disappointed by how flat it all felt in the end. I felt like I missed the point, because this is regarded as one of THE stories of science fiction. Afterwards I also felt no desire to watch Blade Runner, which I have heard so much about and thought I might want to watch after reading the book.

As I mentioned, I think there are certainly interesting aspects of the novel, and I rated it 3 stars on Goodreads, which still feels right to me as a book with potential but didn’t quite work for me personally.

So for those who have read it, I would love your thoughts on what really stands out to you about this novel. Did you get more from the ending than I did? 

My Top 3 Earth-Bound Sci-Fi Films

When we think of science fiction, we often think of outer space. But there’s some good science fiction out there that takes place on Earth as well, exploring the “what-if” questions of science and technology. So for Sci-Fi Month, I wanted to focus on my top three films that were set on Earth and discuss what they’re all about. (Warning: there will be spoilers about the plot devices of these movies.)

1. Source Code

Synopsis (stolen from IMDB): An action thriller centered on a soldier who wakes up in the body of an unknown man and discovers he’s part of a mission to find the bomber of a Chicago commuter train.

source-codeThis story deals with alternate timelines. While Colter Stephens is playing the role of Sean Fentress through this tech known as “Source Code,” he decides he wants to do more than find the bomber on the train, but also try to change the demise the train faced by stopping the bomber altogether. He believes doing this will not only give new life to everyone on the train, but himself as well.

The concept of this movie is really interesting, and I love to see all the different things Colter tries out to get answers. This is the alternate timeline concept done right, in my opinion. I also absolutely love the characters in the movie, Colter and Christina especially (and really, they’re the main focus).

2. The Island

Synopsis (from IMDB): A man goes on the run after he discovers that he is actually a “harvestable being”, and is being kept as a source of replacement parts, along with others, in a Utopian facility.

the_islandThe Island deals with clones in an interesting way. The clones are led to believe they are survivors from a cataclysmic event and are being kept safe in a facility, but through a lottery system, they can be chosen to go to “the island,” the last safe natural resource. The reality, however, is that these clones were paid for by their wealthy counterparts, who have them as a sort of insurance policy for their organs (or even to be used to produce a child for them). Lincoln and Jordan are the two main characters who leave the facility and learn the truth of their identity.

I’ve long been fascinated by the idea of clones: do they have souls, do they feel as we feel, would they make all the same decisions as we do, etc. And I think the concept behind The Island is certainly feasible once human cloning is possible, and which is scary to think about.

3. Gattaca

Synopsis (from IMDB): A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.

gattaca-valid1Gattaca is the one that seems the most realistic to me from this list, and the movie even begins with “the not-too-distant future” as the time identification. Vincent has always dreamed of going to space, but since he was created naturally and not with the science of eugenics, he is considered “invalid” instead of “valid,” and is thus unable to pursue his dream of going into space. But Vincent is determined and disciplined, and pursues the chance to assume the identity of an athletic valid, Jerome Morrow, who was paralyzed in an accident so that he can go after his dream.

I grew incredibly interested in genetic engineering in college, and I’m not sure what sparked it, but it was during that time I sought out this movie (after vaguely recalling my dad telling me its storyline several years before). It definitely challenges the questions of eugenics, of how far would we go with it if we were to implement it into society.

(BTW, if you’re interested in genetic engineering and ever have the chance to visit Chicago, do yourself a favor and go to the Museum of Science and Industry there. They have a fabulous exhibit there on genetic engineering that I thoroughly enjoyed. And also if you’re in Chicago and catch a commuter train to or from a suburb in the area, you’ll feel like you’re in the movie Source Code, for real!)

BONUS!: Inception

I feel weird putting Inception as a bonus because it’s my favorite movie of all time, but when I first decided to do this list I wasn’t thinking of it as a science fiction film. After seeing a couple of posts from other people who do it as such though, I can see why they’d see it that way. What if we could share dreams and manipulate them from within? What if we could organically plant an idea in someone’s mind? I’m sure most of you have seen Inception already but if you haven’t then seriously, what are you waiting for?! It’s AMAZING!

Inception-MovieWhat would you consider your favorite “Earthbound” science fiction film? And what elements of science fiction do you like to see explored in stories that take place on Earth?

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This is my last official post for Sci-Fi Month, and I just want to thank Rinn Reads for hosting this awesome event! If you do it again, I definitely want to participate again! Go check out some of the other great posts from this month from dozens of other bloggers if you haven’t already!

Science Fiction World Building

In science fiction, the story sometimes takes place on a world or galaxy we don’t know. Other times, it takes place on our world (or includes our world), but it’s set in the future and the rules have changed. Either way though, the building of the world for a good science fiction story is key.

To create a world or galaxy from scratch, like George Lucas did with Star Wars, is pretty amazing. I remember when Episode I came out, and I got one of those picture encyclopedia things about the movie. I was fascinated to learn that Amidala’s hairstyle, clothing, makeup, all stood for something in her culture. It wasn’t just random, but there was this whole other story behind what she wore and the rituals she performed. I didn’t know it yet, but I was intrigued by world building.

Queen-amidalaSome stories that use our world also create new worlds and alien species, such as Star Trek, Babylon 5, and Ender’s Game. Sometimes they choose to focus on one other species, like Ender’s Game, and in this case, they are viewed as an enemy. In Babylon 5, there are more species, and a handful of them are ones Earth has made peace with, though unfortunately there was war before peace when it came to some, and still quarrels within the alliance they have formed. And then with Star Trek the number of species out there seems as infinite as the galaxy, from the Klingons to the Vulcans to the Cardassians to the Breen to the Xindi, some who are friends, some who are foes, some who have played as both.

Xindi

The Xindi are especially unique because they have five different species within their own kind.

But there’s more to the world building than the aliens, of course. They create Earth histories that gap the period of time between now and then, and these gaps always seem to include wars. World War III is a common one to be seen, but there’s also wars between us and aliens, and then one that I find particularly fascinating in the Star Trek universe: the Eugenics War. Which if you think you know about Khan from Into Darkness, check out The Original Series’ episode “Space Seed” and the movie Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan to learn more about his past and his involvement with said war.

khan-crewThen there are the stories that feel closer to our time and that take place on Earth, but society has changed. The Island and Gattaca are two great movies (that will be discussed in more detail in a future post) that answer “what if” questions. Fringe focuses on strange things happening in our current world, and leads both the characters on the show and us to believe that there could be a lot more to what’s possible in our world than what we think of on the surface.

fringe-lab-work

Some creepy creature the Fringe team found.

Then there’s Firefly, which doesn’t focus on aliens but humans, but they travel in space and have been spread across the galaxy, and war has separated people to either side with the Alliance or with the Browncoats. The story has a Wild West in space feel to it and Chinese and American cultures, as the only superpowers left, have blended, which also adds an interesting element to the world of the show.

kaylee-parasolAnother great thing about science fiction is the technology. It can play a significant role in the world of the story, and even influence the technology of our world Who doesn’t want a lightsaber or wish they could just teleport to their destination? Star Trek, and I’m sure other science fiction stories as well, have actually influenced our progression of technology, which I think is awesome.

star-trek-techBut I feel all this barely scratches the surface on world building elements, as well as the great worlds seen, in science fiction stories. So I ask you: What science fiction story’s world building has captured your attention the most? What elements of world building in science fiction do you particularly enjoy seeing?

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Memorable Characters of Sci-Fi

I am almost a bit intimidated by the topic I chose for today’s sci-fi month post. Memorable sci-fi characters?! Where do I begin?!

I think one of the misconceptions about sci-fi is that it is all boring science babble and space battles, but as most you are probably aware (because I think I have pretty intelligent and awesome readers!), it really explores humanity in a way no other genre does, and it does this largely through its characters. There’s no way on Earth I could create a list that would true justice to all the fabulous characters in science fiction, but I’m narrowing it down to 2 characters from each of my top 3 sci-fi series: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Firefly, and Babylon 5. These aren’t necessarily my favorite characters, just ones that I find extremely memorable and extremely interesting in their character arcs.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Elim Garak

Bashir_and_GarakGarak is in an enigma, which is what makes him such a great character. The first time I saw Garak, the Cardassian tailor exiled on board Deep Space Nine, I found him extremely odd, and in a more annoying way rather than an interesting way. But after the first season episode “The Wire,” which I won’t give away for those who have yet to see the show, everything about him made so much more sense, and I liked him so much more afterwards. Is he telling the truth? Is he on your side? Just how many back-up plans does he have? Garak is true Cardassian, sneaky and smart, and he never ceases to amaze me with his spy skills.

“Truth is in the eye of the beholder, Doctor. I never tell the truth because I don’t believe there is such a thing. That is why I prefer the straight line simplicity of cutting cloth.” – Garak

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Dukat

dukatI really hate Dukat, which is exactly why is the perfect villain. He’s creepy and manipulative, always striving for a position of power. He’s a complex character who goes through a lot on Deep Space Nine, and though I always saw him as evil, he certainly presented himself to others in shades of gray, but I don’t want to get into spoiler territory so I’ll leave it at that. He’s exactly the sort of character you want to see go down at the end of the day. 

“One man’s villain is another man’s hero, captain.” – Dukat

Firefly: Shepherd Book

shepherd-bookShepherd Book is such an interesting character because he’s a preacher who lives on board a ship with criminals and a companion (essentially a prostitute, more on that later), and while he doesn’t agree with what they do and they know it, he doesn’t condemn them for what they do. He’s an interesting man who clearly has a past apart from the ministry that unfortunately, we never learn. What we do know is that he is a man of conviction and a man who loves people, the way I think we all should be.

“When I talk about belief, why do you always assume I’m talking about God?”

“I don’t care what you believe in, just believe in it.” – Book

Firefly: Inara Serra

inara-serraInara is a companion, which in the world of Firefly, is basically a high-class prostitute, a part of an elite group who go through training and screen their clients. Inara also clearly cares for the Captain of Serenity, Malcolm Reynolds, even though she claims she doesn’t. But a large part of the reason why I chose Inara for this list, and it might be cheating, is that I learned that if we had gotten more Firefly, we would have learned that she actually had an incurable disease that she was dying from, which of course shapes her. What the what?! So fascinating. It’s too bad that, like Shepherd Book and the rest of the Serenity gang, we did not get to know them as well as Whedon had intended for us to.

“A companion chooses her own clients, that’s guild law. But physical appearance doesn’t matter so terribly, you look for a compatibility of spirit.” – Inara

Babylon 5: Londo Mollari

londo2I was continuously floored by Londo’s development throughout Babylon 5 as I watched it. I can’t even scratch the surface of his development in this short paragraph. When we first meet Londo in Babylon 5, he just seems silly, and he somewhat reminded me of Quark on Deep Space Nine. Then things took a turn for the serious. His drive for power, greed, and his hatred for the Narn drove him to make poor choices that went from bad to worse and took him down a dark path. He does find some redemption, but there is no easy out for Londo, and he does get a lot of what he deserves. To sum up Londo’s character development = WOW.

“The quiet ones are the ones that change the universe… The loud ones only take the credit.” – Londo

Babylon 5: Alfred Bester

b5-BesterBester is one of the best villains ever in my opinion. Though he is only in twelve out of 110 episodes of Babylon 5, he goes through quite a lot and we learn a lot about him, about his past and what drives him. He’s frustrating to deal with, he hurts a character on the show that you will love so much more than him, but he has a story too, and that’s what I love so much about the characters on Babylon 5: they have amazing stories. You’ll never root for him, but by the end of the show, you do understand him better than you did at first sight.

“…you’re curious. Kill me and you’ll never know what brought me all the way out here. I think if you weigh that against the brief satisfaction of blowing me out of the sky, you’ll do the right thing.” – Bester

(BTW, you need to read Lianne’s post about why you should watch Babylon 5 if you haven’t already!)

As mentioned before, this list could go on! So tell me, who are your most memorable sci-fi characters?

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Review: Ender’s Game

Every once in a while, there’s a book you feel a strange and unknown draw towards to read, and Ender’s Game was that for me earlier this year. I think it was partly due to the movie coming out, but not completely, as there are plenty of book-to-move adaptations that I don’t pay attention to. But the story sounded interesting and I wanted to check it out. I was surprised by how dark and gritty it was for a book about children, but it’s painting a picture of a desperate society who has barely survived war once and is on the brink of another. It’s a cautionary science fiction tale of how far we will stretch someone, particularly a child, to receive a desired result.

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I don’t think I realized how much I got from the book emotionally until I watched the movie and felt much of a lack of emotion. I know this sounds like the start of a negative review, but it’s not. It is just to say that the book is about warfare and its psychological damage and the real-life causalities of it, as seen through the eyes of the child. I don’t think the movie adaption of Ender’s Game expressed this as fully as it could have, yet at the same time, it did help recall those feelings I had from the book.

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I saw this movie with my husband and two friends. My husband has not read the book, but thankfully he was somehow able to follow along with what felt like an extremely accelerated pacing in the movie. The highlights are all there (or at least in my opinion, one friend missed the Peter-Valentine subplot, which I mentioned in my review of the book I get the point of it but I can take it or leave it) in terms of scenes. But we don’t get to experience the full development of Ender’s mental battle in Battle School or his relationships with Valentine, Petra, Bean, and others. The relationships were my favorite part of the book, so while we see glimpses of these in the movie, they are more of a quick acknowledgment. I do think the relationship that was best represented in the movie was probably that of his and Petra’s, even though I wanted so much more of it! And speaking of Petra, I loved Hailee Steinfield’s portrayal of her. Really, I felt all of the main actors did a solid job in their roles, and even most of the minor kid actors.

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The movie does not really take liberties or change a whole lot, it just mostly skims. The ending of the movie also felt less strange than the ending of the book, and I was satisfied with it. Another part of the movie I thought was really well-done was how everything looked: the Battle school, the technology, etc., I felt all looked great and believable.

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As a supplement to the book, I’d give Ender’s Game the movie four stars, but as a stand-alone, I would give it three. So overall, I’ll average it out for 3.5 stars.

3.5starsI do feel it would be a decent introduction to the ideas of science fiction to someone who may be skeptical, but I feel it’s too obvious in many plot points instead of being delivered organically as it is in the book. Though the movie was already two hours, another half hour at least could have really made it a better film.

Have you seen Ender’s Game? What were your thoughts on it as a standalone and as compared to the book? 

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Elements from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine I’d Like to See in a Book

Last month, Kelley at Another Novel Read was kind enough to allow me to guest post on her blog one day, and so I chose something near and dear to both of our hearts to talk about: Star Trek! I specifically discussed Elements of Star Trek Voyager I Would Like to See in a Book, since Voyager is her favorite (so far! ;)). As I promised on that post, this is my list of the same nature for Deep Space Nine, my favorite of the Trek series! (BTW, I know that Deep Space Nine and the other Trek series have their own books, and I might check them out some day, this is just certain elements from the show I would like to see in otherwise completely different stories!)

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1. Space Station Life

ds9-lifeThe show Babylon 5 also executed this extremely well, but I would love to read a YA book where life is set on space station (not a spaceship, and I’ll explain the differences in a minute) and you really get the full feel for it. A ship is always on the move, and it largely has the same people on it. Since people live there, it does include many of the things a space station also would, but there are some things it does not include that the station does. Deep Space Nine included shops, a school, a bar (where you can eat, drink, play darts, and gamble), and holodecks, and it was all there not just for the regular crew of the station (and their children), but also for the guests coming and going in and out of the station. Having so many people come into the station also means a wide variety of aliens are likely to be there at any given time, which also makes it all the more interesting!

2. A Secret Agency, a la Section 31

sloanI don’t want to say too much about the role of Section 31 on Deep Space Nine for anyone who has not seen the series, and I only mention it since anyone who has seen Star Trek: Into Darkness will be familiar with it already. The concept of a covert, morally ambiguous organization within a larger organization like Star Fleet is something that just fascinates me. I’d love to see something like this played out in a book.

3. An Unlikely/Untrustworthy Friendship

Bashir_and_GarakFor me, one of the most interesting dynamics of Deep Space Nine was that of Dr. Bashir and Garak. The two have a very odd friendship, where they frequently dine together and Bashir will never stop insisting that he believes Garak is a spy. In the episode “The Wire,” when Bashir discovers just how much Garak has lied to him, he asks him what was actually the truth, and Garak tells him, “It’s all true, especially the lies.” This, in a nutshell, describes Garak and his relationship with Bashir, and really with everyone. He’s never straightforward and sometimes you think you can trust him, but sometimes you know you can’t. I would love to read about a friendship as complicated and dynamic as theirs.

4. Important Arcs for Secondary Characters

vic&nogOne of my favorite episodes of Deep Space Nine is “It’s Only a Paper Moon.” (BTW, if you’re ever going to watch the series, do NOT look up the synopsis for this episode! Major spoilers!) The whole episode centers on Nog, a secondary character whose name does not ever show up in the main credit sequence. And it is an amazing episode, because it’s about a defining moment in Nog’s life, and the arc he experiences in the episode alone does more for Nog than some characters get out of a whole series of a show. For this much emphasis on a secondary character for a book, it would probably need to be a series, but just the same, I’d love to see amazing growth from secondary characters in books in addition to the primary ones.

I could think of more elements from DS9 I’d love to see in a book, but talk about spoiler city! There’s just so much goodness to be had, so watch the show and discover it!

What elements from Deep Space Nine or your favorite science fiction show would you like to see in a book? 

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Sci-Fi Month Intro Post!

It’s November, which means it’s Sci-Fi Month, hosted by Rinn Reads! I was very excited when I found out about this event, as the sci-fi genre has been creeping into my life in the form of movies and TV for well over a decade now. It all started with…

star-warsOf course! I thought it was a lot of fun! And then one day I caught a marathon on TV of this show…

The-Twilight-ZoneAnd fell in love with this particular kind of science fiction that examines humanity. Then while dating my husband he introduced me to…

Star-Trek1We watched the original series while dating, and after TRYING to watch the first few episodes of The Next Generation (those first few episodes really are pretty bad), we put the rest of the series on hold until after we married. But now I’ve seen it all and love them all! But in the meantime, we were introduced to…

fireflycastSuch a unique and awesome (but sadly short-lived) series! Then after we finished Star Trek, we watched…

babylon5It’s crazy underrated. I mean seriously, how many TV shows do you know of where the creator/writer of the show had the entire series plotted and planned out beforehand? Amazing story and character arcs in five seasons (or four… the fifth season sadly didn’t live up to the rest of the show in terms of great stories). And currently we’re watching…

Fringe-season2Most of these movies/shows will come up again in my posts this month! And now I’m starting to gain interest in sci-fi books as well, though I think the only true sci-fi book I’ve read so far is Ender’s Game. I liked it pretty well and I’m planning to check out more sci-fi books! But since I will not be reading anything new this month due to NaNoWriMo, I will have no new reviews of sci-fi books to share, and will be focusing exclusively on the movies and TV shows that made me fall in love with the genre over time. Here’s my personal schedule of posts that you can look out for:

November 7: Elements from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine I Want to See in Books

November 11: Ender’s Game movie review

November 18: Memorable Characters of Sci-Fi

November 22: Science Fiction World Building

November 27: My Top 3 Earth-Bound Sci-Fi Movies

And since I love to share Trek with all and didn’t want to re-write the post for Sci-Fi month, I thought I’d take this chance to refer anyone new to my post from several months ago about how to dive into the world of Star Trek, Your Star Trek Introduction, in case you’re interested!

If you’re participating in Sci-Fi Month as well, leave a comment and let me know! And if not, I hope you’ll enjoy some of these posts!

What’s your favorite element of science fiction? 

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