This is THE Greg Egan podcast. In this episode we cover Egan’s stories “The Planck Dive,” “Glory,” “Singleton,” “Oracle,” and “Oceanic.” We talk about Egan’s approach to science and art, quantum mechanics, history, biography, religion, sexuality, and much else, putting these works into the context of all his other fiction and what little is known about his life experiences. In the process, Karen Burnham realizes that she will need to considerably re-write the introduction to the book on Egan’s work that she is currently finalizing.
Next episode we’ll be talking about the 1998 Clarke Award-winning novel The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell.
In this episode of SF Crossing the Gulf, Karen Burnham and Karen Lord discuss the Ted Chiang story “Hell is the Absence of God” as well as the Greg Egan stories “Crystal Nights,” “Yeyuka,” and “Closer.” They talk about topics such as third person omniscient narrators, villains, suffering, and the trope of Westerners sacrificing fingers for Africa. Karen Burnham would like to add that the story “Microcosmic God,” whose author she forgot, was written by Theodore Sturgeon.
Next week we’ll be discussing Erna Brodber’s The Rainmaker’s Mistake, and after that we’ll return to Greg Egan’s short fiction.
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Here’s the cover art and synopsis of the upcoming novel The Eternal Flame by Greg Egan, the second book in his Orthogonal series, following The Clockwork Rocket . Here’s the synopsis:
Greg Egan’s The Clockwork Rocket introduced readers to an exotic universe where the laws of physics are very different from our own, where the speed of light varies in ways Einstein would never allow, and where intelligent life has evolved in unique and fascinating ways. Now Egan continues his epic tale of alien beings embarked on a desperate voyage to save their world . . . .
The generation ship Peerless is in search of advanced technology capable of sparing their home planet from imminent destruction. In theory, the ship is traveling fast enough that it can traverse the cosmos for generations–and still return home only a few years after they departed. But a critical fuel shortage threatens to cut their urgent voyage short, even as a population explosion stretches the ship’s life-support capacity to its limits.
When the astronomer Tamara discovers the Object, a meteor whose trajectory will bring it within range of the Peerless, she sees a risky solution to the fuel crisis. Meanwhile, the biologist Carlo searches for a better way to control fertility, despite the traditions and prejudices of their society. As the scientists clash with the ship’s leaders, they find themselves caught up in two equally dangerous revolutions: one in the sexual roles of their species, the other in their very understanding of the nature of matter and energy.
The Eternal Flame lights up the mind with dazzling new frontiers of physics and biology, as only Greg Egan could imagine them.
Book info as per Amazon US:
- Hardcover: 328 pages
- Publisher: Night Shade Books (September 4, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 159780293X
- ISBN-13: 978-1597802932