Tag: sciencefiction

The Doctor and the Tardis in a Christmas Tree Filled Landscape

Doctor Who Villains Getting Their Own Stories In New Book Series

A short story collection set in the Doctor Who universe titled Twelve Angels Weeping will feature classic villains of the cherished British television series, reports Radio Times.

 

Dastardly foes of the regenerating Time Lord to be featured in the story collection include the robotic Cybermen, telepathic Ood, and the genocidal Daleks. No word on the Weeping Angels, but seeing as how one is featured on the cover, it would be a good bet that those time eating horrors are lurking around.

 

Weeping Angel in Snow

Image Via Rebloggy

 

Written by Dave Rudden, each story will revolve around one of the aforementioned monsters as they encounter some Christmas themed shenanigans and Yuletide adventure.

 

Twelve Angels Weeping is scheduled to be published this October, just in time for the holiday season. Remember to keep a sonic screwdriver in your stocking.

 

Feature Image Via BBC America

Stranger Things

Netflix Announces ‘Stranger Things’ Books Set to Release, Coming This Fall

Netflix has just announced a new series of books centered in and around the eerie, dark, illuminating world of Stranger Things we all know and love (and it sounds insanely rad)!

 

As of now, three books have been stated as being in the works and are set to release this fall.

 

via GIPHY

 

The books will include a behind-the-scenes look at the filming of the popular Netflix series entitled Stranger Things: World Turned Upside Down: The Official Behind-The-Scenes Companion, a “gift” book aimed at younger fans detailing a fresh, inside look at the Upside Down, and a prequel novel written by author Gwenda Bond (Girl on a WireGirl in the Shadows) centered around the life of Eleven’s mother.

 

The books are part of a partnership Netflix has recently made with Penguin Random House and will include an accompanying series of audiobooks as well.

 

More information on the books has yet to be released but our return to the upside down seems to be very, very near so grab your Eggos, your flashlight, your baseball bat, and get ready!

 

 

via GIPHY

 

 

Featured Image Via Bloody Disgusting

Buffy

This New Novel Is Set Within the ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ World

Now, if you’re at all like me, then you already know that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is one of the greatest series to ever grace modern television. This layered, genre-bending series about a cheerleader-turned-heroine helped pave the way for a generation of girls who believed that they, themselves, could fight the monsters under the bed; a generation of girls who knew exactly how powerful they were. 

 

 

 

***Buffy Spoilers***

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Even without the very clear feminist foundation, Buffy had such intense, powerful messages hidden beneath the plot lines of monsters, demons, and vampires. Almost everything was a metaphor for something far more profound. Like when Buffy awakes the morning after finally sleeping with her first love only to discover that he’s not the same kind, loving, soulful person he was just hours before (of course, this has more to do with an ancient gypsy curse than anything else). Then there’s the way Buffy’s own mother kicks her out of the house after she “comes out” as a slayer and her mother fails to understand that it’s just the way she was born and isn’t something she can control. This is the clear sexuality and teenage rebellion embodied within each of the sadistic, wild vampires (like Spike and Drusilla).

 

Even the different ways mourning is expressed through each character as they cope with the heartbreaking (and ultimately shocking) deaths that occur throughout the series shows something so vulnerable and human. One would say it feels as though you’re mourning alongside them. Buffy was also progressively ahead of it’s time for how openly and realistically it portrayed the lesbian relationship between Buffy’s best friend and sidekick, Willow Rosenberg, and her girlfriend (and fellow Wiccan) Tara Maclay.

 

Buffy was a show that felt like a part of you. The characters were each so flawed, lovable, and developed. They matured in such a concrete, authentic way it felt like you knew them as more than just fictional characters on some television series; the heart of this show felt real. It was a seven season show that was nearly impossible to say goodbye to. This is true even though saying hello to the incredibly dark and insanely well done spinoff series Angel definitely helped to ease some of that pain. 

 

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a series that helped me grow; it influenced teenage me in more ways than I’m sure I even realize. It still continues to be something I turn to when life feels too intense and I need a quick escape route. And now, thanks to bestselling author Kiersten White (Paranormalcy), the world of Buffy has been raised from the dead with Slayer; a new young adult novel taking place within the Buffy universe.

 

 

Slayer

Image Via Entertainment Weekly

 

 

When Buffy began, as stated in the famed opening theme, there was only ever one slayer existing at a time:

 

 

In every generation there is a chosen one. She alone will stand against the vampires the demons and the forces of darkness. She is the slayer.

 

 

Then, once the slayer inevitably passed away, another slayer would come into her powers and meet her “watcher”. They would be a mentor/teacher meant to help her understand her new place in this world and help her to hone in on all of her newfound skills and then begin training. But, during the finale, a spell was cast allowing every would-be slayer to come into her powers at once; the world was suddenly filled with young, powerful girls who had the agility and strength needed to keep the monsters at bay.

 

And now, it appears that Slayer is taking place where that world left off:

 

 

Nina and her twin sister, Artemis, are far from normal. It’s hard to be when you grow up at the Watcher’s Academy, which is a bit different from your average boarding school. Here teens are trained as guides for Slayers—girls gifted with supernatural strength to fight the forces of darkness. But while Nina’s mother is a prominent member of the Watcher’s Council, Nina has never embraced the violent Watcher lifestyle. Instead she follows her instincts to heal, carving out a place for herself as the school medic.

Until the day Nina’s life changes forever.

Thanks to Buffy, the famous (and infamous) Slayer that Nina’s father died protecting, Nina is not only the newest Chosen One—she’s the last Slayer, ever. Period.

As Nina hones her skills with her Watcher-in-training, Leo, there’s plenty to keep her occupied: a monster fighting ring, a demon who eats happiness, a shadowy figure that keeps popping up in Nina’s dreams…

But it’s not until bodies start turning up that Nina’s new powers will truly be tested—because someone she loves might be next.

One thing is clear: Being Chosen is easy. Making choices is hard. 

 

 

Did you get goosebumps? I got goosebumps. This sounds so perfectly Buffy-esque, I can’t wait to see where Nina’s journey as a slayer takes her!

 

Slayer is set to release January 8, 2019. You can read an exclusive excerpt from it here on EW.

 

 

 

Image Via GIPHY

 

 

Featured Image via Screen Rant

Synopsis Via Amazon

Church of Scientology

The Author Who Holds the World Record for Most Publications Is Not Who You Think It Is

The most published author of all time has officially been declared by The Guinness Book of World Records (and, surprisingly, it’s not the king of fiction himself, Stephen King) as none other than the founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard.

 

Take a second to breathe that in; it’s shocking, alarming, and even a little unsettling, I know. 

 

Over the past few years a plethora of Scientology documentaries have been released on HBONetflix, Amazonhulu, and more, making L. Ron Hubbard a bit of a household name. 

 

But, if you happen to be unfamiliar with Hubbard, or Scientology in general, here are some of the basic things you should know:

 

L. Ron Hubbard was born on March 13, 1911 in Tilden, Nebraska. He spent much of the first part of his life working as a fiction writer, gaining notoriety for his science fiction and fantasy short story contributions to pulp fiction magazines in the 1930’s. He also had works published under romance, adventure, western, mystery, aviation, and mystery, and even wrote the screenplay for the Columbia Pictures feature film, The Secret of Treasure Island.

 

In 1950, Hubbard went on to publish a series of “psychological self-help” books entitled Dianetics. Dianetics is a system of levels to work your way through that are stated to help remove psychosomatic disorders by eliminating dangerous or harmful images from your mind— the process involves sitting in a room with an “auditor” who interrogates you, forcing you to reveal your innermost thoughts, past traumas, and any secrets you may have so that you may erase that part of your mind and reach contentment, awareness, and sanity. Dianetics would become the foundation of the creation of Scientology.

 

In May of 1952, Hubbard finally launched his, now infamous, cult-like religious system, Scientology. Scientology is stated to be a system of graded courses and levels to work through with the goal of self-awareness, spiritual fulfillment, and super powers beyond that of any normal, everyday human. The entire process of working through the levels typically takes decades and costs around $500,000 (graduation from the program alone is $100,000, and additional $100,000 fees are given to anyone who speaks publicly about the practices). Once you’ve reached the final level, you are said to gain magical abilities such as telekinesis, immunity from all illnesses, superior senses, and mind control. (No scientologists to date have reported ever witnessing someone reach this final, mystical level and gain said powers.)

 

By the time Hubbard opened The Church of Scientology on February 19th, 1954, he already had a steady following of loyal and believing scientologists ready and willing to join.

 

And, by the time the 1960s rolled around, Hubbard had found himself the leader of a worldwide movement containing thousands upon thousands of members (some celebrity members have included and continue to include Tom Cruise, Elisabeth Moss, Kirstie Alley, Laura Prepon, and John Travolta).

 

As the years went on and more was revealed about Scientology and what was really going on within The Church, investigations were launched against Hubbard, forcing him to spend his remaining decades living in hiding.

 

L. Ron Hubbard suffered a stroke and passed away on February 24th, 1986, leaving behind a powerful, sinister legacy of systems still in place today (The Church of Scientology is stated as currently having around 25,000 members, with numbers in a steady decline).

 

Even in death Hubbard is still managing to make headlines; since his passing he has been awarded three separate records through The Guinness Book of World Records, and still holds the titles today:

 

1. Most Published Works by an Author1,084 publications

2. Most Languages Translated to by an Author: 71 languages

3. Most Audiobooks Recorded by an Author: 184 audiobooks

 

 

The strangest thing about all of this is that Hubbard feels like some sort of evil super-villain we can’t defeat; Scientology has caused a lot of pain for a lot of people and, though it’s numbers are decreasing, there are still many people following it today. The Church has a scary amount of power, making it extremely dangerous and nearly impossible for members to ever leave; and it’s all thanks to L. Ron Hubbard, the man who turned simple science fiction stories into an infectious, disease-like-religion that seemingly can’t be stopped.

 

But, if we can’t tear Scientology down in it’s entirety, the least we should be able to do is beat Hubbard’s World Records and get him off the list.

 

So, get to writing, we’ve got publications to stack!

 

 

 

Featured Image Via The Los Angeles Times

Black Mirror

Black Mirror Fan? You’ll Love Theses Books Challenging Modern Society

There are a few things that remain the same every time I am subjected to an episode of Black Mirror, the hit TV show blending science fiction and horror to appeal to our deep rooted anxieties about modern society. The first being that I must be feeling pretty head-strong to agree to watch an episode in the first place. You don’t want to be in a fragile state with only your pillow to hide behind. Second, each time the episode is over and the deed is done and we can all finally go back to a less terrifying existence, I scan the room for my friends in order to discuss the unhinging potentialities the episodes present to us.

 

Our growing dependance on technology makes many a scenario from Black Mirror seem like plausible future realities, such as robots of now-deceased-lovers prolonging the grieving process, crazy dog robots coming to kill humanity, and social media ratings quite literally taking over your life. So if you are into dystopian futures such as those mentioned above then you will love these 5 books we’ve selected for your Black Mirror lovin’ brains.

 

1. Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart

 

Novel

Image Via Amazon

 

Picture a near future dystopian New York where life is dominated by media and retail, and books have been rendered down to “printed, bound media artifacts”. This novel chronicles a blossoming love story from its awkward beginnings in an ungovernable America on the edge of fiscal collapse. Death is stalking protagonist Lenny Abramov, who works for an outfit called post-Human Services that attempts to provide immortality for its super-rich clientele.

 

Book lover and old soul Lenny navigates himself somewhat despondently through the tank-ridden streets of New York as he falls for twenty-four year old Eunice Park, a recent graduate with a major in Images and a minor in Assertiveness.

 

While Eunice tries to change Lenny’s archaic way of life, he in turn triumphs by showing her that there is still value in being a real human being, no matter how many shortcuts there are at the touch of a button. Read this one if you loved “San Junipero” or “Hang The DJ“.

 

2. Nunquam by Lawrence Durell

 

novel

Image Via Goodreads

 

This one will appeal to fans of Black Mirror’s “Be Right Back,” for it chronicles a similar situation of grief whereby Felix Charlock, the novel’s narrator, returns to work after he is discharged from an Alpine mental institution. His task in the second part of this two-part series is to create a lifelike android in the exact image of his late move star lover. This novel puts forth powerful allegories and observations about the difference between man and machine and offers a biting commentary on modern science and the Frankenstein trope in literature. As for the episode of the hit TV show, as Martha becomes increasingly frustrated with her replica boyfriend Al, as he is unable to embody the finer details of the late Ash’s personality, a scene of emotional torture unfolds only to render her choice of having artificial intelligence enter her desolate home life become supremely regretful, and more testing on her heart than her lover’s death in the first place.

 

 

3. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

 

Ishiguro

Image Via Goodreads

 

Ishiguro’s 2005 novel is certainly a dystopian companion to Black Mirror, for it is a heart-wrenching and character-driven story with elements of science fiction that function as the story’s backbone. Kathy, Tommy and Ruth grow up together in a British boarding school, moving to “the cottages” afterwards. One thing is certain throughout – something very sinister is on the horizon. Absent of family or friends, the three struggle heavily with the fact that they were brought into the world solely to become organ donors. Life and love can only really be half-experienced, for their fates were set in stone the day they were born – as clones. This harrowing life of passivity creates the same sensation in the reader as one experiences while watching the original Netflix show, Black Mirror.

 

4. A Collapse of Horses by Brian Evenson

 

evenson

Image Via Pinterest

 

 

Master of literary horror Brian Evenson unsettles us with both the everyday and the extraordinary: the terror of living with the knowledge of all we cannot know. In this elegantly tense short story collection, Evenson writes 17 tales filled to the brim with hyper-violence and grotesquerie, with a lot still left to the readers imagination. Evenson relies on inner monologue, fast paced action, and unfiltered narrative prowess to ensure each story has a lasting impact and covers a multiplicity of themes.

 

5. Moxyland by Lauren Beukes

 

moxyland

Image via Goodreads

 

If the “Nosedive” episode of Black Mirror tickled your social media luvin’ fancy then Moxyland, South African author Lauren Beukes fantastic debut novel, will also tickle said fancy. “Nosedive” presented us with a reality that seems to be very very near in our futures: everyone is obsessed with their 5 star rating on social media, one wrong move and you could lose a decimal point and potentially ruin your entire life. Moxyland presents a similar existence in which corporations benefit from and rule peoples undying obsessions with their social media, and if you go against the grain of what these corporations are cashing in on you face the ultimate punishment: disconnection.

 

Featured Image via Nerdist.