Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

When is a Hoax More Than Just a Hoax?

"Cardinal Hoax"
Karl Bozicevic

ISBN: 978-0-615-51767-4
Flow Focusing Press
San Francisco, CA
Available at Amazon

“Cardinal Hoax” is a book that draws on many of the key traditions of the science fiction genre. We're all familiar with the “find a new invention, use it as a vehicle for stories,” element of sci-fi. Star Trek has its transporters, and warp drives: Stargate has the Gate and wormhole technology: Welles has his time machine, and Isaac Asimov has the science of “psychohistory” by which human behavior might be predicted. In the end, the story is the thing. The new gizmo is always the new element, but it's what the author does with the gizmo, and the stories he tells around it, that really bring books long lasting recognition.

Some of the most interesting science fiction since the early days of the genre, came from thinking deeply about humanity, putting the reader in a different frame of reference, and looking back to see what we would look like from the perspective of an alien, or folks in a far future or a distant past. It demands that the author look closely at who we are, what we believe, and how we behave. Horses were transportation until carts came along, which were transportation until autos were invented, and on to buses, trains, airplanes, and space shuttles. With each new mode, some of the distances both between cities, and between peoples were changed along with them. Stories of riding on the first trains or planes now no longer hold our interest. We want to be on the rocket ships to the stars.