Set in a surprisingly nostalgic distant future, Space Boy tells the sweet, science-fiction story of two wildly different teenagers who, through chance and happenstance, manage to traverse an entire universe only to find each other.
Amy is a girl lost in time. Hailing from a deep space mining colony, Amy’s happy and mundane adolescence is irreparably changed when her family must transfer to Earth. In order to make the long voyage, Amy must go under cryogenic status for 30 years, leaving behind her friends and home only to wake up on a planet she doesn’t know, to a life that has undergone three decades without her.
Insecure and lonely, Amy attempts to pick up where she left off, entering a public high school and experiencing normal Earthling life for the first time. But her world is soon shaken yet again when she meets Oliver, a secretive and withdrawn boy whose solipsistic worldview hints at a much larger trauma in his past. Against all odds, the two manage to become friends, and Amy finds herself unwittingly entering into a plot much larger than herself — more dangerous than anything high school has prepared her for.
Space Boy is the kind of science-fiction that wipes away the sterile chrome from its setting, replacing it instead with the warm glow of a slice-of-life story that still manages to feel otherworldly.
|Recommended by Marie Anello||Monday, February 29th, 2016||No Comments »|
By the end of Roadside Picnic “the Zone” is no clearer than it was from the beginning. Despite having gone through it various times, its expanse escapes complete definition, though some, like the gritty red-haired anti-hero Redrick “Red” Schuart, excel more than others at navigating into its unknowns. It is perhaps somewhere between an industrial wasteland and an alien planet, a fitting landscape considering it’s one of several areas “The Visitors” decide to land and pack up and go without even the slightest communication.
Roadside Picnic is the tale of an alien visit without the aliens. A genre novel that is an entirely different kind of science fiction, one that focuses on the crude, raw reality of society, one with its fantastic elements numbed, wiped by the tangible corporeal ground the novel writes from. There is less here to take one away than there is to bring one crashing face to face with humanity’s perversions, its ego, and its failings.
|Recommended by Rhys Dipshan||Wednesday, December 30th, 2015||No Comments »|
To put forth an idea of a utopia is one thing — to dissect the idea and watch as its parts intermingle and clash in a blinding haze is an entirely different endeavor. It’s one of the reasons why Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Dispossessed won two of the most coveted sci-fi fiction awards.
The novel is essentially the tale of two worlds: Urras and the colonized nearby moon, Annares, the latter of which was a gift to its once native revolutionaries to tame a threat of rebellion. The nations and societies of Urras are not unlike our own: the excess materialism, the belief in competition, the rabid hunger for wealth and resources, the rigidly structured societies under all powerful autocrats, oligarchs. Anarres in comparison is a austere tabula rasa, an unforgiving world that tests survival, and where ownership and property is as alien as its former motherland on its horizon.
Few transverse the worlds, but readers intimately get to know one who does, the Annares-born Shevet, an ardent revolutionary at heart but a inquisitive and practical physicist with a penchant for what his race demeaningly refers to as “egoism.”
|Recommended by Rhys Dipshan||Tuesday, October 20th, 2015||No Comments »|
I was assigned Ender’s Game when I was 12 and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. If Ender was real, I probably would have followed him into battle, which was why the ending of the book and its only sequel at the time, Speaker for the Dead, were so disappointing. Ender turned into a complete bleeding-heart wuss. If it weren’t for Bean’s arc in the Ender’s Shadow series, I probably would have dropped Orson Scott Card for good. But then it happened. Card released Ender in Exile, bridging the gap between Ender’s final battle and the Speaker trilogy and It. Was. Awesome.
|Recommended by J. Harbinger||Friday, June 5th, 2015||No Comments »|
Stockholm-based illustrator Kilan Eng, who works under the moniker DW Designs, creates illustrations that look like screenshots from a demented sci-fi film–or a Daft Punk music video. Combining bright colors with futuristic imagery, Eng’s illustrations are an assortment of ’80s retro style thrust into a world of cyborgs, tattered cities, and techno wastelands. His images flow together, telling a non-narrative story about a world that might exist in another galaxy or dimension.
Eng recently published a compilation of his pieces in the art book Object 5, which you can pick up here via Floating World Comics. He also sells prints online through Cook & Becker. Recommended for those who like a little pizazz in their apocalypse.
|Recommended by The Absolute Staff||Wednesday, March 25th, 2015||No Comments »|
Kaleb Lechowski’s short film Rh’a is a fascinating sci-fi short where a defender of a futuristic world must fend off a creepy alien invader.
The movie opens with a member of an alien race, known as Rh’a, being tortured by a robot. Despite being faced with almost certain death, the Rh’a defender refuses to give in to his captor. He struggles against his bonds as a flashback explains that he and others like him used to defend the entire solar system against all enemy forces until an internal traitor used their own robots against them. In the wake of the destruction of their city, the defender and other members of the military tried to lure out the robots and destroy them so that they could regroup in a secure location to figure out what happens next.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Thursday, January 29th, 2015||No Comments »|
In a post apocalyptic wasteland a city rests in shambles. After the death of the sun and several destructive wars, the city is now a cold and desolate place with only a metal dome protecting its remaining survivors. But typical of most sci-fi stories, one young man decides to step up and fight the dictatorship. Welcome to Wokubo, a new sci-fi series I stumbled across, um, today. This awesome intro teaser sets up the story and ends with a satisfying cliffhanger to grab your attention. Created by filmmaker Jorge Jaramillo, there are currently 24 episodes planned for the series. Looks promising.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Tuesday, January 27th, 2015||No Comments »|