Alex once walked away from a rare ability to warp time, thinking it was only a young man’s trick to play basketball better. Now, as a father and teacher, he needs to relearn the skill quickly before the past begins to destroy his own future. To protect his daughter and his most promising student, he must stop the school at which he teaches from turning the clock backwards to an era of white supremacy.
An old high school friend is in desperate need of Alex’s unique gifts to help solve an ancient Maya mystery. As the puzzling artifact offers a rare chance to bridge the past and the future, its story begins to intertwine with the growing tensions at Alex’s school. As both situations take dangerous turns, Alex knows that he must learn to control his temporal talents before he runs out of time.
z2 is part of 46. Ascending, a collection of loosely interrelated novels about five very different family members who each discover that they can do the extraordinary when circumstances require it. These books are designed to be read as stand alone stories or in any order.
Sherrie Roth grew up in Western Kansas thinking that there was no place in the universe more fascinating than outer space. After her mother vetoed astronaut as a career ambition, she went on to study journalism and physics in hopes of becoming a science writer.
She published her first science fiction short story in 1979 and then waited a lot of tables while she looked for inspiration for the next story. When it finally came, it declared to her that it had to be whole book, nothing less. One night, while digesting this disturbing piece of news, she drank way too many shots of ouzo with her boyfriend. She woke up thirty-one years later demanding to know what was going on.
The boyfriend, who she had apparently long since married, asked her to calm down and explained that in a fit of practicality she had gone back to school and gotten a degree in geophysics and had spent the last 28 years interpreting seismic data in the oil industry. The good news, according to Mr. Cronin, was that she had found it at least mildly entertaining and ridiculously well-paying The bad news was that the two of them had still managed to spend almost all of the money.
Apparently she was now Mrs. Cronin, and the further good news was that they had produced three wonderful children whom they loved dearly, even though to be honest that is where a lot of the money had gone. Even better news was that Mr. Cronin turned out to be a warm-hearted, encouraging sort who was happy to see her awake and ready to write. “It’s about time,” were his exact words.
Sherrie Cronin discovered that over the ensuing decades Sally Ride had already managed to become the first woman in space and apparently had done a fine job of it. No one, however, had written the book that had been in Sherrie’s head for decades. The only problem was, the book informed her sternly that it had now grown into a six book series. Sherrie decided that she better start writing it before it got any longer. She’s been wide awake ever since, and writing away.
Guest Blog Post:
Putting Physics in a Novel
A photon checks into a hotel. The bellhop asks. “Can I help you with you luggage? It replies, “I don’t have any. I’m traveling light.”
Can physics be funny? Of course it can, if you let it. And as many recent authors have shown, it can also be inspirational, challenging us to question our basic beliefs as we reach for a fuller understanding of our universe. The hero of my book z2 is a high school physics teacher, and a man so fascinated by light and energy that he has dreams about talking photons. As he struggles to make his material relevant, and even amusing, to his largely bored students, he stumbles on truths that will eventually shape his own life.
As a writer with a strong science background, I have my own struggles as I try to interject some of the subject matter that I love into my science fiction stories. It is important that I don’t bore or confuse my reader, and I’ve been on both sides of that equation. I also enjoy crime fiction. Because I have a poor grasp of legal jargon, I admire those writers who can interject just the right amount of legalese to make a novel better. I want to do the same with science.
My classroom setting gave me a way for Alex to explain key concepts about time and reality without the narrator having to give a lecture. I added in a few dream sequences to take some of the concepts further. In the end, I hope that my reader will enjoy the story but also come away with a sense of wonder at the miniscule flickers of matter and energy that are our universe.
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