Welcome to my tour stop for Prisoner by Dennis W. Green! Prisoner is an adult science fiction and the tour is jam packed with reviews, interviews, guest posts and excerpts.
About Prisoner (Book Two):
Trav Becker is a police detective with multiple lives. Or to be more accurate, he’s a police detective who knows that multiple versions of himself live in countless different streams of existence.
When another Trav Becker appears bleeding and dying at his front door, Trav quickly realizes that something is dreadfully wrong in the multiverse.
Pursued by an FBI profiler who believes (with some justification) that Trav is hiding something, the detective races to save two kidnapped girls while also trying to sort out why he keeps turning up dead.
Desperate to preserve his home timeline, Trav is thrust into a hidden war that threatens to destroy the very fabric of reality itself.
Dennis Green returns to the universe he created in “Traveler” for another mindbending thriller.
Police detective Trav Becker can travel between parallel realities. So can other versions of him. And one is systematically killing every Trav he can find. Trav must fight to keep the very fabric of time itself from unwinding as he hunts the most dangerous quarry of all… himself.
Urban Fantasy vs. Speculative Fiction: What’s in a Sub-Genre?
Guest Post by Dennis W. Green
We’ve come a long way since Hugo Gernsback coined the term “scientifiction” to describe the work he published in Amazing Stories. A check on Wikipedia reveals a total of forty-nine sub-genres of science fiction (Solarpunk or Edisonade, anyone?) and another forty-five for Fantasy, including Bangsian Fantasy (not what you think).
Where is the line between Fantasy and Science Fiction?
The title of the article refers to Speculative Fiction, but I’m going to stick with the more generally accepted, if less accurate, Science Fiction. That’s the term I grew up with. For me Science Fiction has always meant literature that is rooted in extrapolating more or less directly, from existing science (both physical and social). A current example, of course, is “The Martian.”
Plus, speculative is hard to say without spitting.
I also don’t care much for the term Urban Fantasy, because a purist will tell you Urban Fantasy can only take place in an urban setting, i.e. a modern city. In that case, would you call the Sookie Stackhouse books Country Fantasy? Southern Fantasy? Like Speculative Fiction, Contemporary Fantasy is probably a better term for fantasy stories set in a somewhat-recognizable version of our modern world.
However, once the marketing folks get hold of a catchy term, the hell with precision. Which means we’re kind of stuck with Science Fiction to describe all stories Space or Future, and Urban Fantasy for everything that’s not Game of Thrones.
This discussion is of particular interest to me because my Traveler series could actually be categorized as Urban Fantasy. While I postulate a scientific explanation behind how Trav Becker sips between different reality streams, as explained by his physicist buddy Sam, I’m the first to admit that I made it all up, with only the barest connection to actual science.
However, no less a scientific personage than Neil DeGrasse Tyson refuses to rule out the idea of a Multiverse. There is also an urban legend called The Mandela Effect, which is practically a word-for-word analogue to the idea of parallel universes I use in Traveler.
Wait… if it’s an “urban” legend, does it have to take place in a city? Where does that leave The Hitchhiker On The Country Road? Discuss.
The point is, I could have made Sam a wizard instead of a physicist with only moderate changes to the heart of my story. Conversely, I’ve read fantasies where the rules of magic-making were so complete and hierarchical, you could have dropped organic chemistry in place of the spells and not changed the plot that much. What Arthur C. Clarke said about Technology and Magic applies to literature, too.
Anyway, the science in Traveler is like the science in Star Wars. It’s not a basis for how the story universe works so much as a setting. “Ah, there are spaceships and blasters, or Schroedinger’s Cat and a physicist. That means it’s science fiction, not fantasy.”
Which I suppose makes Traveler Space Opera. Except it takes place on Earth. Wait, there’s a city… Hmm. Urban Opera?
Maybe I’ll just go write stories and let the marketing folks worry about the labels.
About the Author:
Dennis Green’s first novel, the scifi detective thriller, Traveler, ranked in the Top Ten in the 2014 Ben Franklin Independent Publishing awards, and has a 4.9 review average on Amazon. The second volume of The Traveler Chronicles, Prisoner, has just been released.
Trav Becker’s saga concludes in the final volume of the trilogy, Hunter, due in 2017. A popular radio personality in his native Iowa, Dennis’s adventures as a DJ were covered by newspapers from Anchorage to Los Angeles. He has also worked on the stage, TV, and independent film.
Dennis’s writing has appeared in the anthology Sadistic Shorts, magazines including Grift, and Romance and Beyond, as well as his own blog at denniswgreen.com. By day, he is the general manager of Iowa’s only jazz radio station, KCCKFM. And if it’s 5:30 am, you can probably find him in the pool, working out with the Milky Way Masters swim club.