July 16, 2013 at 8:03 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Sprindown ReviewTitle: Spindown

Author: George Wright Padgett

Publisher: Grey Gecko Press

Genre: Science Fiction

Length: 372 pages

There are books you read and love but cringe when someone suggests they make it a movie. What if they screw with the magic? What if they ruin it?  But there are some books that as you read, before you even finish the book, just BEG you to become a movie one day.  That’s Spindown.

Visually striking, the novel drops you right into the action from the first page, dripping with images of a future on the largest moon of Jupiter where clones are created to function their entire existence as slaves on a mining outpost.  The writing style reminds me of Robert A. Heinlein (author of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress) and Gershom Reese Wetzel (author of Teres, which is unfortunately not available for the public yet); and the story reminds me of some of the more futuristic sides of Doctor Who (episodes like The Rebel Flesh, and such).Spindown art

Always a sucker for dystopian societies, I love the premise and the journey these characters have from mindless machine-like worker bees to passionate beings with more than a vague idea of what is means to be “dormant dead” and no Hemlo to suppress emotions.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI had the pleasure of meeting George Wright Padgett at Comicpalooza this year.  His publisher, Grey Gecko Press, had a booth there.  In all the hoopla la and excitement, he had a personality that stood out in a crowd and after gathering some information on his book, I was able to set up signings with him at Half Price Books.

The signing at the Humble location was a blast.  Grey Gecko Press brought a banner to put up in the store which looked pretty stellar, the book trailer was running on a flat screen in the background, and we had cupcakes from The Martin Epicurean.  Pulling off fun events in a bookstore has just as much to do with planning and organization as personality and conversation with the author themselves.  Padgett is quite entertaining and could be an event in himself with or without the book!

PadgettsHere is a little anecdote he shared on facebook from Comicpalooza:

So this past weekend at the convention, I was approached by a guy who said his name was Tom Padgett and that his son’s name was Tommy Padgett. He told me that he saw the banner (pictured) that bore his last name, and was thrilled to see another ‘Padgett’ as the author. I don’t know if he (or Tommy) even cares for the sci-fi genre, but he bought a book simply on the sir name.So here’s my strategy for my next three projects: Each novel will be released under a different pseudonym in hopes of securing higher sales from the consumers that buy books based on their own last names. Be sure to tell your friends, family, and co-workers to be on the lookout for new books from ‘George Smith’, ‘George Davis’, and ‘George Johnson’. We’re gonna sell millions now that we’ve got this figured out!
At which point, I want to say: DO IT! Haha.
But seriously, this guy is awesome, and so is the whole Grey Gecko Press crew.  If you are a bookstore, I highly recommend having them come out and do an event.  If you are a reader – go buy Spindown NOW.   If you’re an artist, I personally would like to start seeing some fan art.  If you are a movie producer… get on this, asap.  I’m waiting.  With popcorn.
(Stay tuned for more pictures from the Half Price Books event.)

Permalink Leave a Comment

I am a Child of Neptune

July 30, 2012 at 6:00 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , )

One of my goals for this year was to branch out in my reading.  For a long time I have told people “I’ll read pretty much anything,” but in reality I remained a skeptical reader.  A thought would pop in my head along the lines, “I wonder how much truth there is to…?” but did not bother to do the necessary research because my prior education was telling me “Don’t waste time, after all it is all crap.”  Case and point: Astrology.

I believe 100% in Jesus Christ and that He, is my Lord and Savior.  If one song could most consistently speak the words of my heart over and over again throughout my life it would be Rich Mullins’ Creed.  But in addition to that, I believe that there are elements of truth in many things, after all God created this world, so naturally there would be signs of Him in things, right?  Astrology as use for divination and as a religion is not what I’m interested in as I know where my faith lies.  However, God created the Heavens and the Earth and the people in it, so I am naturally curious to research and see if there is any truth in the thing I raised to believe was crap.  Could the stars and the planets and the birth of a person all line up together to have influence over our existence? Could God use this as a beautiful master piece of art and design to create a balanced puzzle?  Who knows, but I aim to look into it.  In doing so, I’m reading books I would have never read before.

Ruling Planets by Christopher Renstrom is fascinating.  Throw everything you think you know about Astrology aside – I’m a Pisces, represented by Fish because I was born February 22nd, Husband is a Gemini… and so on.  Cast that away and forget about it.  Renstrom very carefully lays out an ancient system, that as far as I can tell is far more detailed, highly accurate, and disturbingly spot on.

I always felt like the description of a Pisces kind of matched me, and kind of didn’t.  I speculated on whether it would make a difference if I had been born closer to my due date (a month later), and some of those attributes matched, and didn’t.  I wanted to put together a research plan – how much of the things you see of yourself in those descriptions are the stars and how much of those things are rooted in how you were nurtured due to the time of the year you were born.  Maybe a Pisces loves being in the water because a February baby is just the perfect age to introduce to the swimming pool come summer.  Do these similarities change for babies born in Australia vs. the United States?  I thought it could be an interesting project, even if it were never fruitful or came to any kind of conclusion.  I wanted to approach these concepts with the calculating mind of a marketing researcher pinpointing the best demographic for a product.  Is there anything more than coincidence to Astrology and why have people been fascinated with it for thousands of years?

In Ruling Planets, I got a taste for the parts of Astrology that made the ancients fall in love with the stars and the planets and their relationships at large.  Instead of a Pisces, I discovered that I am a Child of Neptune and Jupiter, under Capricorn.  I’ve never read anything, not even psychology survey results or personality test conclusions that sounded so like myself as the pages about the Children of Neptune/Jupiter and then the more specific pages regarding Capricorn under Neptune and Jupiter.  Myers Briggs has nothing on Renstrom’s Ruling Planets.

So where does that put me now?  I don’t want to be a mystical nut-job.  And it doesn’t shake my faith in Jesus Christ in the slightest.  I just find all this pretty interesting and the desire to read more and pin point my thoughts on all of this is more intense than ever.  Get yourself a copy of the book, read it, and share your thoughts with me.  I’d love to discuss.

Permalink 3 Comments