Jack McDevitt

en: Jack McDevitt American science fiction aut...

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Jack McDevitt is the author of comfortable science fiction. The first book I read is probably his best, Infinity Beach. It is set in the distant future and relates man’s first encounter with an alien race, who resemble tiny butterflies. I have read the book at least three times and I will read it again.

McDevitt writes individual books not part of a series, and he also writes two series, both set in the distant future. One series involves a woman spaceship captain, Priscilla Hutchins, and the other series involves a dealer in antiquities, Alex Benedict, and his assistant, Chase Kolpath. My second favorite book by McDevitt is Chindi, Navajo for wandering ghost, which is also an alien encounter with a hollow asteroid on auto-pilot that wanders the galaxy collecting specimens.

I have not read all of McDevitt’s books, but I can recommend all that I have read save for Time Travelers Never Die. It is about time travel and is a perfect example of why I avoid time travel books.

I have just finished reading his latest book, Firebird, in the Alex Benedict series, and I recommend it highly. It has two interlocking themes, finding ships lost in space due to a warping of space-time, and the possibility of consciousness in the artificial intelligences that serve humanity. I think that he developed both themes very well. For me as a limited french speaker, the only jarring note in the book was the claim that french was no longer spoken or understood in the distant future.

11/22/63 part 2

Dallas PD color mugshot November 23, 1963

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Just finished reading Stephen King‘s latest opus, 11/22/63, about the JFK assassination. The book is chock-a-block with details of the events leading up to the assassination that I didn’t know about. There is even Jack Ruby‘s explanation for the shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald. He wanted to save Jackie the distress of a trial. I have always thought that the killing of Oswald resembled a mafia-style coverup. After all his research for the writing of this book, King says he is convinced that Oswald operated alone. However, Stephen’s wife, Tabitha, is still convinced that there was a conspiracy. I guess that we will never know.

Please see 11/22/63


Dust jacket11/22/63 by Stephen King. This book grabbed me from page one. Some books do that and it becomes an “I can’t put it down” situation. I have read almost every word that Stephen King has written and I can even remember when and where I read my first of his books (The Shining, summer of 1980, 2727 Miradero Drive, Santa Barbara, California). I read science fiction books for relaxation, but in general I try to avoid books that involve time travel because I simply cannot become involved in them. In fact, before I read the glowing reviews of this book, I planned to avoid it. I am so glad I did not. I have barely begun and I am sure that at 849 pages, I am going to find the book too short. I will write another post when I have finished reading.

I have enjoyed reading all the Stephen King books I have read. Some have been better than others, and I am now re-reading some of his books that I enjoyed the most. I have just finished re-reading Desperation and Black House. I thought that there was no new way to invoke time travel, but King has found a way. In 11/22/63, an English teacher travels to the past in an effort to change history by preventing the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. If you are old enough to remember where you were when JFK was shot, you will want to read this book. Even if you have never read a book by Stephen King or sworn that you never will, you will want to read it. Trust me on this one.