Fifty Degrees Below
Fifty Degrees Below is the second book in the hard science fiction Science in the Capital trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson. It directly follows the events of Forty Signs of Rain, with a greater focus on character Frank Vanderwal, his decision to remain at the National Science Foundation, following the earlier novel’s superstorm and devastating flood of Washington D. C; the book, series, looks at possible mitigation and adaptation efforts that could be undertaken to combat the dangers of anthropogenic climate change, though the plot focuses on an international effort to restart the stalled Gulf Stream. The focus is on the scientific approach by the NSF, its effort to work with the United States government, the UN and other international bodies; the character of Frank Vanderwal is followed through about a year and a half of his life. Alongside his work at the NSF, his storyline focuses on his attempt at a paleolithic lifestyle, which includes focusing on certain types of behaviour that the human brain has adapted to enjoy, such as sleeping outdoors and hunting.
Vanderwal meets a woman who introduces him to the potential and danger of total electronic surveillance. Publishers Weekly praised the novel, saying "this ecological disaster tale is guaranteed to anger political and economic conservatives of every stripe, but it provides the most realistic portrayal created of the environmental changes that are occurring on our planet, it should be required reading for anyone concerned about our world's future." Kirkus Reviews were mixed in their review saying "though it is fast-paced and exciting, it does strain believability. Where the author succeeds is in his fascinating speculation about our ecological future, the steps we could be taking to repair the world for future generations. First-rate ecological speculation, but a second-rate thriller." Janet Raloff reviewing for Science News said "overall, Robinson's engaging book is a fast-moving, upbeat romp driven by science." The novel was nominated for a Locus Award in 2006
Escape from Kathmandu
Escape from Kathmandu is a 1989 collection of novellas by American writer Kim Stanley Robinson, about a group of American expatriates in Nepal. The novellas are: Escape from Kathmandu Mother Goddess of the World The True Nature of Shangri-La The Kingdom Underground
Kim Stanley Robinson
Kim Stanley Robinson is an American writer of science fiction. He is best known for his Mars trilogy, his work has been translated into 24 languages. Many of his novels and stories have ecological and political themes running through them and feature scientists as heroes. Robinson has won numerous awards, including the Hugo Award for Best Novel, the Nebula Award for Best Novel and the World Fantasy Award. Robinson's work has been labeled by The Atlantic as "the gold-standard of realistic, literary, science-fiction writing." According to an article in The New Yorker, Robinson is "generally acknowledged as one of the greatest living science-fiction writers." Robinson was born in Illinois. He moved to Southern California as a child. In 1974, he earned a B. A. in literature from the University of California, San Diego. In 1975, he earned an M. A. in English from Boston University. In 1978 Robinson moved to Davis, California to take a break from his graduate studies at UC San Diego. During this time he worked as a bookseller for Orpheus Books.
He taught freshman composition and other courses at University of California, Davis. In 1982 Robinson earned a Ph. D. in English from the UC San Diego. His initial Ph. D. advisor was literary critic and Marxist scholar, Fredric Jameson, who told Robinson to read works by Philip K. Dick. Jameson described Dick to Robinson as "the greatest living American writer." Robinson's doctoral thesis, The Novels of Philip K. Dick, was published in 1984 and a hardcover version was published by UMI Research Press. In the 1980s Robinson spent time with a National Science Foundation team at a research base in Antarctica. In 2008, Time Magazine named Robinson a "Hero of the Environment" for his optimistic focus on the future. In 2009, Robinson was an instructor at the Clarion Workshop. In 2010, he was the guest of honor at the 68th World Science Fiction Convention, held in Melbourne, Australia. In April 2011, Robinson presented at the second annual Rethinking Capitalism conference, held at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Among other points made, his talk addressed the cyclical nature of capitalism. Robinson was appointed Muir Environmental Fellow in 2011 by the John Muir College, University of California San Diego. Sheldon Brown described Robinson's novels as ways to explore how nature and culture continuously reformulate one another. All of Robinson's novels have an ecological component. In the Mars trilogy, one of the principal divisions among the population of Mars is based on dissenting views on terraforming. Colonists debate whether or not the barren Martian landscape has a similar ecological or spiritual value when compared with a living ecosphere like earth's. Forty Signs of Rain has an ecological thrust, taking global warming for its principal subject. Robinson's work explores alternatives to modern capitalism. In the Mars trilogy, it is argued that capitalism is an outgrowth of feudalism, which could be replaced in the future by a more democratic economic system. Worker ownership and cooperatives figure prominently in Green Mars and Blue Mars as replacements for traditional corporations.
The Orange County trilogy explores similar arrangements. Tim Kreider writes in the New Yorker that Robinson may be our greatest political novelist and describes how Robinson uses the Mars trilogy as a template for a credible utopia. Robinson's work portrays characters struggling to preserve and enhance the world around them in an environment characterized by individualism and entrepreneurialism facing the political and economic authoritarianism of corporate power acting in this environment. Robinson has been described as anti-capitalist, his work portrays a form of frontier capitalism that promotes egalitarian ideals that resemble socialist systems, but faced with a capitalism, maintained by entrenched hegemonic corporations. In particular, his Martian Constitution draws upon social democratic ideals explicitly emphasizing a community-participation element in political and economic life. Robinson's works portray the worlds of tomorrow in a manner similar to the mythologized American Western frontier, showing a sentimental affection for the freedom and wildness of the frontier.
This aesthetic includes a preoccupation with competing models of political and economic organization. The environmental and social themes in Robinson's oeuvre stand in marked contrast to the right-libertarian science fiction prevalent in much of the genre, his work has been called the most successful attempt to reach a mass audience with a left wing and anti-capitalist utopian vision since Ursula K. Le Guin's The Dispossessed. Robinson's work features scientists as heroes, they are portrayed in a mundane way compared to most work featuring scientists: rather than being adventurers or action heroes, Robinson's scientists become critically important because of research discoveries and collaborat
Red Moon (novel)
Red Moon is a 2018 science fiction novel by American novelist Kim Stanley Robinson. The novel is set on the Moon, it received mixed reviews. Fred Fredericks is sent to the Moon to deliver a quantum communications device. Upon his arrival he is nearly killed during the handover of the device, but cannot remember what happened, he is held on suspicion of murdering the official to. A journalist helps Fredericks and the dissident leader Qi, due to give birth soon, escape back to Earth, they are pursued by Chinese authorities who believe that Qi will lead a revolution of disaffected workers and displaced migrants to overthrow the Party leadership. After a series of chases and escapes, Fredericks and Qi return to the Moon, where they encounter a wealthy Chinese businessman building his own ideal colony and visit free settlers creating a lunar city outside government control. One faction of the Chinese leadership orders missile strikes on the Moon to kill Fredericks and Qi, but they receive advance warning of the attacks and flee to a remote lunar shelter, where Qi gives birth as millions of Chinese workers gather in Beijing to start the revolution.
According to literary review aggregator LitHub, the book received a larger number of negative reviews than it did positive ones. Jason Sheehan of NPR criticized the book's emphasis on exposition and digressions into discussions of the environment and orbital mechanics, suggesting that Robinson's approach was "no way to tell a story". Writing for The Guardian, Chris Beckett praised Robinson's depiction of the relationship between Fredericks and Qi, calling it "a delightful and touching depiction of two people who would have nothing to do with each other, finding a way of getting along"; the Times criticized the "great indigestible tracts of expository dialogue" and "horrible doldrum of narrative drift", but concluded that Red Moon "confirms its author's status as a sci-fi master"
Antarctica is a science fiction novel by American writer Kim Stanley Robinson. It deals with a variety of characters visiting an Antarctic research station, it incorporates many of Robinson's common themes, including scientific process and the importance of environmental protection. Most of the story is centred on McMurdo Station, the largest settlement in Antarctica, run as a scientific research station by the United States. Robinson's characteristic multiple-protagonist style is employed here to show many aspects of polar life; as well as McMurdo, the story involves the Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station, the Shackleton Glacier, the McMurdo Dry Valleys and a South American drilling platform near Roberts Massif. Antarctica involves many of the ideas; the significance of Antarctica as a "continent for science" is contrasted with the need to provide a decent environment for the support staff essential in a place so marginal. Other recurring themes include rock-climbing, physical athleticism, the process and ideology of science, exploitation of natural resources, the formation of cooperative and anarchic social systems.
The novel was influenced by Robinson's 1995 stay in Antarctica as part of the National Science Foundation's Antarctic Artists and Writers Program, was nominated for a Locus Award in 1998. While researched in great detail, accurate, some reviews noted that the book was in parts slowed down by heavy amounts of technical and historic detail. Audio Review at The Science Fiction Book Review Podcast Review at CNN
Icehenge is a science fiction novel by American author Kim Stanley Robinson, published in 1984. Though published ten years before Robinson's Mars trilogy, taking place in a different version of the future, Icehenge contains elements that appear in his Mars series, such as extreme human longevity, Martian political revolution, historical revisionism, shifts between primary characters. Icehenge is set at three distinct time periods, told from the perspective of three different characters; the first narrative is the diary of an engineer caught up in a Martian political revolution in 2248. Kidnapped aboard a mutinous Martian spaceship, she provides assistance to the revolutionaries in their quest for interstellar travel, but chooses not to travel with them but to return to the doomed revolution on Mars; the second narrative is told from the perspective of an archaeologist three centuries later. He is involved in a project investigating the failed revolution, during this finds the engineer's diary buried near the remains of a ruined city.
At the same time, a mysterious monument is found at the north pole of Pluto, tying up with a passing mention in the engineer's diary. In the final narrative, the great-grandson of the archaeologist visits the monument on Pluto, a scaled-up version of Stonehenge carved in ice, he is investigating the possibility that both the diary and the monument were planted by a reclusive and wealthy businesswoman who lives in the orbit of Saturn. The first part of this novel was published as the novella To Leave a Mark in the November 1982 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction; the third part of Icehenge was published as the novella On the North Pole of Pluto in 1980 in the anthology Orbit 18 edited by Damon Knight. Robinson gave the novella in rough form to Ursula K. Le Guin to read and edit while he was enrolled in her writing workshop at UCSD in the spring of 1977. Views of Saturn from the space station visited by the narrator of the novel's third section were inspired by images of Saturn taken during the Voyager flybys in 1980—1981.
1984, United States, Ace Books ISBN 0-441-35854-3, Pub date October 1984, paperback 1985, United Kingdom, Futura Orbit ISBN 0-7088-8166-1, Pub date December 1985, paperback 1986, United Kingdom, MacDonald ISBN 0-356-12402-9, Pub date October 1986, hardback 1986, Denoël ISBN 2-207-30425-6, Pub date September 1986, paperback 1986, Editrice Nord ISBN 88-429-0171-7, Pub date 1986, paperback 1987, West Germany, Bastei-Lübbe ISBN 3-404-24092-8, Pub date 1987, paperback 1990, United States, Tor Books ISBN 0-8125-0267-1, Pub date September 1990, paperback 1997, United Kingdom, Voyager ISBN 0-00-648255-4, Pub date 15 September 1997, paperback 1997, Zagrebačka naklada ISBN 953-6234-26-2, Pub date 1997, paperback 1997, Bulgaria, Лира Принт ISBN 954-8610-18-3, Pub date 1997, paperback 1998, United States, Tor Orb ISBN 0-312-86609-7, Pub date July 1998, paperback 2001, People's Republic of China, 漓江出版社 ISBN 7-5407-2610-5, Pub date 2001, paperback 2003, Gallimard ISBN 2-07-031304-2, Pub date December 2003, paperback 2004, Minotauro ISBN 84-450-7495-4, Pub date 9 March 2004, paperback 2009, United Kingdom, Voyager ISBN 978-0-00-733674-6, Pub date 1 August 2009, paperback The work of disenchantment never ends: Kim Stanley Robinson’s Icehenge by Jo Walton Icehenge title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is a nearly perfect sphere of hot plasma, with internal convective motion that generates a magnetic field via a dynamo process, it is by far the most important source of energy for life on Earth. Its diameter is about 1.39 million kilometers, or 109 times that of Earth, its mass is about 330,000 times that of Earth. It accounts for about 99.86% of the total mass of the Solar System. Three quarters of the Sun's mass consists of hydrogen; the Sun is a G-type main-sequence star based on its spectral class. As such, it is informally and not accurately referred to as a yellow dwarf, it formed 4.6 billion years ago from the gravitational collapse of matter within a region of a large molecular cloud. Most of this matter gathered in the center, whereas the rest flattened into an orbiting disk that became the Solar System; the central mass became so hot and dense that it initiated nuclear fusion in its core. It is thought that all stars form by this process.
The Sun is middle-aged. It fuses about 600 million tons of hydrogen into helium every second, converting 4 million tons of matter into energy every second as a result; this energy, which can take between 10,000 and 170,000 years to escape from its core, is the source of the Sun's light and heat. In about 5 billion years, when hydrogen fusion in its core has diminished to the point at which the Sun is no longer in hydrostatic equilibrium, its core will undergo a marked increase in density and temperature while its outer layers expand to become a red giant, it is calculated that the Sun will become sufficiently large to engulf the current orbits of Mercury and Venus, render Earth uninhabitable. After this, it will shed its outer layers and become a dense type of cooling star known as a white dwarf, no longer produce energy by fusion, but still glow and give off heat from its previous fusion; the enormous effect of the Sun on Earth has been recognized since prehistoric times, the Sun has been regarded by some cultures as a deity.
The synodic rotation of Earth and its orbit around the Sun are the basis of solar calendars, one of, the predominant calendar in use today. The English proper name Sun may be related to south. Cognates to English sun appear in other Germanic languages, including Old Frisian sunne, Old Saxon sunna, Middle Dutch sonne, modern Dutch zon, Old High German sunna, modern German Sonne, Old Norse sunna, Gothic sunnō. All Germanic terms for the Sun stem from Proto-Germanic *sunnōn; the Latin name for the Sun, Sol, is not used in everyday English. Sol is used by planetary astronomers to refer to the duration of a solar day on another planet, such as Mars; the related word solar is the usual adjectival term used for the Sun, in terms such as solar day, solar eclipse, Solar System. A mean Earth solar day is 24 hours, whereas a mean Martian'sol' is 24 hours, 39 minutes, 35.244 seconds. The English weekday name Sunday stems from Old English and is a result of a Germanic interpretation of Latin dies solis, itself a translation of the Greek ἡμέρα ἡλίου.
The Sun is a G-type main-sequence star. The Sun has an absolute magnitude of +4.83, estimated to be brighter than about 85% of the stars in the Milky Way, most of which are red dwarfs. The Sun is heavy-element-rich, star; the formation of the Sun may have been triggered by shockwaves from more nearby supernovae. This is suggested by a high abundance of heavy elements in the Solar System, such as gold and uranium, relative to the abundances of these elements in so-called Population II, heavy-element-poor, stars; the heavy elements could most plausibly have been produced by endothermic nuclear reactions during a supernova, or by transmutation through neutron absorption within a massive second-generation star. The Sun is by far the brightest object in the Earth's sky, with an apparent magnitude of −26.74. This is about 13 billion times brighter than the next brightest star, which has an apparent magnitude of −1.46. The mean distance of the Sun's center to Earth's center is 1 astronomical unit, though the distance varies as Earth moves from perihelion in January to aphelion in July.
At this average distance, light travels from the Sun's horizon to Earth's horizon in about 8 minutes and 19 seconds, while light from the closest points of the Sun and Earth takes about two seconds less. The energy of this sunlight supports all life on Earth by photosynthesis, drives Earth's climate and weather; the Sun does not have a definite boundary, but its density decreases exponentially with increasing height above the photosphere. For the purpose of measurement, the Sun's radius is considered to be the distance from its center to the edge of the photosphere, the apparent visible surface of the Sun. By this measure, the Sun is a near-perfect sphere with an oblateness estimated at about 9 millionths, which means that its polar diameter differs from its equatorial diameter by only 10 kilometres; the tidal effect of the planets is weak and does not affect the shape of the Sun. The Sun rotates faster at its equator than at its poles; this differential rotation is caused by convective motion