I was late to the idea of audiobooks. I grew up reading books and the idea of listening to them instead didn’t click for me. If nothing else, I can read a whole lot faster than someone can narrate. So, when I started to write, the idea of producing an audiobook never crossed my mind. That lasted until a discussion at Boskone this year when I was told that I was being an idiot – actually the author was far more polite in the way she said it; I wrote it the way it probably should have been said. It was made very clear that I needed to change with the times. I had published Starman’s Saga just a few months before and I went through ACX to have an audiobook produced. That has been well-received, so I decided it was time to do an audiobook for Accidental Warrior. That is now in production and the new book, when it comes out, will have an audiobook version, too. Old dogs can learn new tricks. At least, this one is trying.
On the reading side of things, this one is a fun departure from the usual science fiction and fantasy book. Zombies & Calculus by Colin Adams. I’m not kidding; that is the title. In a way, I suppose you could say this is really hard science fiction; it is – literally – full of equations. The story is of how a professor along with his family, and some students and other faculty at small school in New England survive a zombie apocalypse – through differential equations! Yup, there are differential equations for how fast (dZ/dt) the zombie population grows (you could take the equations and apply them to COVID-19 if you were so inclined), for how to out-maneuver zombies, and even for modeling how humans and zombies could end up in an oscillating equilibrium. If you like math (don’t hate me here), it’s a hoot. There are some downsides, of course. The plot is pretty standard zombie apocalypse. The characters are two-dimensional at best. It’s really a math book that was eaten by a zombie. It is fun, though, to see the math applied to zombies and at only 228 pages, including appendices, it doesn’t take that long to go through it. I recommend it for the general sf reader, with the caveat that I think you should have one course in calculus under your belt.