The Science of Aliens: The Real Science Behind the Gods and Monsters from Space and Time

Skyhorse. Jul. 2022. 216p. ISBN 9781510767102. pap. $14.99. FILM
Brake’s (The Science of James Bond) book takes a long view of aliens in literature and film. The book is divided into four parts, each with a general theme. The first section discussed aliens in history, beginning in ancient Greece with Aristotle’s claim that man is alone in the universe. Brake claims that science fiction begins with Copernicus, who theorized that worlds other than our own might exist. The author also briefly discusses H. G. Wells’s The War of the Worlds, whose themes were influenced by Darwin’s On the Origin of Species. In the book’s second section, Brake looks at Xenomorphs in Alien and Avatar; ecological themes in Avatar and Dune; the aliens common to both the DC and Marvel universes; and the Star Wars franchise (which gets several chapters). The book’s last sections deal with interplanetary exploration and alien invasion in film and print media. Brake’s writing is not overly academic, making it suitable for readers of all levels.
VERDICT Recommend for science fiction fans or readers interested in extraterrestrial life will find this an interesting read.
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