Calculating Stars

A Lady Astronaut Novel

384 pages

English language

Published April 29, 2018 by Doherty Associates, LLC, Tom.

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4 stars (5 reviews)

On a cold spring night in 1952, a huge meteorite fell to Earth and obliterated much of the east coast of the United States, including Washington, DC. The ensuing climate cataclysm will soon render Earth inhospitable for humanity, as the last such meteorite did for the dinosaurs. This looming threat calls for a radically accelerated effort to colonize space, and requires a much larger share of humanity to take part in the process.

Elma York's experience as a WASP pilot and mathematician earns her a place in the International Aerospace Coalition's attempts to put man on the moon, as a computer. But with so many skilled and experience women pilots and scientists involved with the program, it doesn't take long before Elma begins to wonder why they can't go into space, too.

Elma's drive to become the first Lady Astronaut is so strong that even the most dearly held conventions …

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4 stars

Kun kohtalaisen kokoinen meteoriitti kopsahtaa otsaan, eihän siitä mitään hyvää seuraa. Tällä kertaa seuraukset ovat sen verran vakavat, että ihmiskunta alkaa tosissaan valmistella maisemanvaihdosta.

Kowalin päähenkilö Elma York on matemaattinen nero, joka päätyy laskijaksi avaruusohjelmaan mutta haaveilee pääsystä astronautiksi. Matka sitä kohti kerrotaan taiten, ja siinä sivussa käsitellään myös naisten asemaa, ihonväriin kohdistuvaa syrjintää, uskontoon kohdistuvia ennakkoluuloja jne. Nämä kaikki onnistutaan upottamaan tarinan kulkuun suhteellisen sujuvasti, vaikka hetkittäin päähenkilöt vaikuttavat olevan asennemaailmaltaan hiukan aikaansa edellä.

Review of 'The Calculating Stars' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

This novel uses an alternate history to explore female astronauts, climate change, and international cooperation. At times a little heavy handed, it is still a well researched and interesting story - and the first part of a duology.

In this timeline, a meteorite wipes out Washington DC and a chunk of the east coast. This near extinction level event also kick starts a race to establish a human presence off planet - culminating in a trip to the moon much earlier than it happened in our history. This alteration naturally changes other things, and it is interesting to see which change and which stay the same (unfortunately, abuse of race and privilege). Told only from the perspective of the main character, news reports at the top of each chapter give the reader glimpses into the wider world, and some events also make into the narrative.

The author really knows this …

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  • Fiction, science fiction, general