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A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 05, 2011, 11:56:43 PM
by Lester Curtis
Hard SF action-adventure! Great stuff!

I've got to admit, it's gotta be tough to make the much-cliched Mad Scientist seem real and believable. Great characterization here.

Very crisp and efficient all around.

Seriously, Mr. Strout should be peddling this stuff to Analog magazine. It really is that good.

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 07, 2011, 11:38:15 AM
by gino_ss
Thanks for the kind words, Lester. I write only as an avocation. To quote Leon Uris, I write mostly for my own entertainment.

gino

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 07, 2011, 03:39:52 PM
by Bill_Wolfe
Lester Curtis wrote:Hard SF action-adventure! Great stuff!

I've got to admit, it's gotta be tough to make the much-cliched Mad Scientist seem real and believable. Great characterization here.

Very crisp and efficient all around.

Seriously, Mr. Strout should be peddling this stuff to Analog magazine. It really is that good.

Good? Yes.

Entertaining? Absolutely!

Hard SF? Not a chance.

And Analog would tear him a new one for bad science. . .if he didn’t just get the Pink Rejection Slip of Death, that is.
I could go into detail, but Gino says it best when he writes:
“Your particles have been sequestered in those miles-deep layers of ice for tens of million years.”


Huh? Sequestered?

A miniature black hole all nice and spread-out, but locked in the ice so it’s harmless?

And then they are somehow attracted when a little light detector responds to a flash of light in the ice from a neutrino. . .a flash of light that would have happened whether we were there to ‘see’ it, or not?

Which then start moving through the ice toward a detector. . and what. . .start living in the detector?

And then there’s the part where:
Paula said. "I do not believe your new particle is inert. If I am correct, each one has its own minute gravitational field. Collectively they could cause a tectonic shift."


Any particle with mass (especially those pesky things that make up all atoms) has its own gravitational field. Even neutrinos (though the fields are itty bitty) have ‘em.

Remember the movie Weird Science?

But hard?. . . nah.

And a mad scientist working in his garage is somewhat believable. At a place like this? With going before review boards every year to secure funding?

Need any more?

Bill

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 07, 2011, 06:56:43 PM
by Lester Curtis
Okay, Bill, maybe not "hard" SF -- but have you LOOKED at Analog lately?

I remember the Campbell years . . .

They're getting pretty soft. And not everything they print is this good. Just my opinion.

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 07, 2011, 09:14:21 PM
by gino_ss
I always look forward to Bill's insightful rants. In his quest for scientific accuracy and purity, I think that sometimes he overlooks the fact that the operative word is fiction.

gino

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 08, 2011, 08:05:48 AM
by CCC
Bill's already spoken about the science; it's far from the world we live in, but I do think it's just about enough for the story. It seems more an action-hero story than a science story to me; it straddles the divide between the two, but I think it's definitely more on the action-hero side.

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 12, 2011, 01:12:01 PM
by Javier
I agree that the scientist is a bit of an unbelievable character ... but, Character develeopment is a difficult thing and takes a lot of time!! A character is 360 degrees and needs to be understood by the author like that..

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: July 31, 2011, 10:47:33 AM
by gino_ss
My thanks to all who read, commented or offered critiques on AMANDA.

gino

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: August 07, 2011, 06:03:46 PM
by kailhofer
Ah, I knew I remembered this one!

I was in the same Planet Magazine with "Karen's Last Game." That was a lot of years ago... I feel old.

Re: A.M.A.N.D.A. by E. S. Strout

PostPosted: August 08, 2011, 11:33:27 AM
by gino_ss
Yeah, I know what you mean about feeling old. I've been retired for two years now. AMANDA's been cleaned up quite a bit since its PlanetMag debut.

gino