Last Updated on Tuesday, 05 November 2013 03:53
Our 'Staff Selections' guest columnist this month is Chris, who works in the Norman Public Library's Computer Training Center.
Chris was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. He earned an undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering at Iowa State University and a Master's degree in Aerospace Engineering at Penn State, where will also soon complete a Ph.D. He came to Norman when his wife accepted a faculty position at the University of Oklahoma.
Chris volunteered at the Norman Public Library for several years, and when the most recent teaching position in the CTC opened up he was in the process of looking for ways to increase his time at the library, making it a perfect fit. When he's not working or reading, Chris enjoys ballroom dancing, cooking, and eating.
"I’ve always been fascinated by the future, so I was hooked on Science Fiction at a young age," Chris says. "Although the genre often evokes images of crappy made-for-TV movies, there are definitely some diamonds in the rough."
City by Clifford D. Simak
Chris: "Simak did not like cities… at all. His theory is that in the future there won’t be any. I happen to disagree, but City is a fascinating read nevertheless, and one of the best-written Science Fiction novels out there."
The Quadrail Series by Timothy Zahn
Chris: "I’m cheating here - this is really a five-book series, starting with Night Train to Rigel. Imagine a cross between Murder on the Orient Express and Star Trek. Campy, yes, but a fun read by one of SF’s greatest authors."
The Dreaming Void by Peter F. Hamilton
Chris: "Yeah, cheating again, though this time even though the Void Trilogy is a three-book series, it’s better to think of it as a single 1800 page tome broken up into three sections for ease of use, since the story is continuous. In Hamilton’s far-future universe the laws of physics are very different from ours (at least in one particular location), which I really enjoy reading about."
The Boat of a Million Years by Poul Anderson
Chris: "What are the implications of one in a billion humans being born “immortal” (capable of being killed, but not of dying of old age)? How would they live their lives, and what would happen if society found out about them?"