Tuesday, January 17, 2017

"Ocean of Storms"

Jeremy K. Brown has authored several biographies for young readers, including books on Stevie Wonder and Ursula K. Le Guin. He has also contributed articles to numerous magazines and newspapers, including special issues for TV Guide and the Discovery Channel, and recently edited a collector’s issue on Pink Floyd for Newsweek. Brown published his first novel, Calling Off Christmas, in 2011 and is currently at work on another novel. He lives in New York with his wife and sons.

Brown applied the Page 69 Test to Ocean of Storms, his new book with Christopher Mari, and reported the following:
From page 69:
“Okay,” he said, cracking his knuckles. “Basically, imaging radar is like a flash camera, right? A camera sends out a flash of light and records the light that’s reflected back through the camera lens. Got it? So, instead of a lens and film, radar uses an antenna and digital computer tapes to record its images. In a radar image, one can see only the light that was reflected back toward the radar antenna. So, what we did was send one of our little birdies up there, ran a few imaging cycles and, whap!” He struck a few keys like a concert pianist finishing a sonata. Instantly an eerie image of the lunar landscape popped up. At its center was a dark-blue mass.

“There she is,” said Egan. “Since the image is so dark, we can safely assume that it’s a flat surface. Buildings or any kind of topography will bounce the signal off each other, what’s called a ‘double bounce.’ They’ll always show up white.”

“She’s big,” Donovan said, letting out a whistle.

“And deep,” Egan said. “About a mile down.”

“So much for digging it up,” Zell said. “We’ll have to descend through the fissure itself, see what we can see from the inside.”

“Couldn’t dig it up anyway, even if we wanted,” Donovan said. “Much of the surface in that area is made up of titanium, zirconium, and beryllium. I remember reading one of my father’s old papers. He remarked that it was strange that these metals were there, as ordinarily they’d require extreme heat, somewhere around forty-five hundred degrees Fahrenheit to fuse with rock.”
So is page 69 the best representation of Ocean of Storms? Well…somewhat. We do get to see our two main characters studying the mysterious object beneath the Moon’s surface, puzzling out what it may be and how they’ll work to uncover it. But what’s lost is the wider scale of the book, the global implications of the impending mission and the cast of characters who will accompany our heroes to the Ocean of Storms. But, all that said, it does provide an excellent tease for the reader. What are they studying? What is waiting for them? What does it all mean? You’ll have to read the book to find out…
Learn more about Ocean of Storms at the publisher's website.

My Book, The Movie: Ocean of Storms.

--Marshal Zeringue