Matthew Kresal was born and raised in North Alabama though he never developed a Southern accent. His essays have been featured in numerous books and his first piece of fiction was published in the anthology Blood, Sweat, And Fears in 2016.
The Strange Case of Doctor Omega
For years as a Doctor Who fan, I've been vaguely aware of something called Doctor Omega. No, it isn't a spin-off of the long-running British science fiction series. In fact, it predates the BBC series by more than a half-century. Originally published in French as Le Docteur Oméga in 1906, this early science fiction novel with its tale of interplanetary exploration featuring a title character who is an old man with white hair certainly would seem on the surface to be quite like William Hartnell's First Doctor. Yet is there more to it than that? Is Doctor Omega the predecessor to Doctor Who?
Doctor Who: The Last Post Review
It's hard to believe that it's been over five years now since we lost Caroline John, the actress perhaps best known for playing Doctor Liz Shaw alongside Jon Pertwee's Third Doctor in Doctor Who's 1970 season. Yet despite appearing on the long-running series for a single season, fans never forgot the character and the actress returned to reprise the role numerous times on audio for Big Finish Productions in the years before her passing. The last story recorded before her passing, the appropriately titled The Last Post, stands as a tribute to character and actress alike.
How Would the U.S. Government Survive the Apocalypse?
Since the dawn of the nuclear age, how to survive a potential war fought with perhaps the most dangerous weapons invented by human beings has been a frequently asked —not just by private individuals, but by governments as well. Tracing the history of how the U.S. government has planned for a nuclear showdown and its aftermath, Garrett M. Graff's 2017 book Raven Rock: The Story of the U.S. Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself — While the Rest of Us Die is a sobering but engrossing look into this shadowy world.
The Spy Novel That Predicted the Rise Of Trump & "Russiagate"
A businessman turned politician wins the Republican nomination for President of the United States. He defeats his Democratic challenger and looks set to go into the White House, preaching policies favorable to Russia. Yet a British intelligence operative uncovers proof linking the campaign to the Russians, forcing an investigation that eventually leads not just to major campaign officials but to the President-Elect himself.
Smiley, le Carré, & 'A Legacy Of Spies'
It's been more than a quarter of a century since the Berlin Wall came down and the Cold War ended. There's a generation that has grown up in its aftermath, looked back on what was done, and wondered whether it was worth all the toil and treasure paid out for it. It is perhaps not surprising, in a time of retrospection about that great and most secretive conflict of the twentieth century, that one of the authors who came out of it returns to it. John le Carré, himself briefly a British intelligence agent at the height of the Cold War, does so with his novel A Legacy Of Spies and he brings forth many of his best-known characters to do so.
Angleton and Buckley's 'Spytime'
James Jesus Angleton is one of those enigmas that could only have come out of the Cold War era. The long-time head of the CIA's counter-intelligence wing after serving with the agency's precursor organization during World War II, few figures could claim to have had as much of an effect on the secret wars that marked the Cold War as he did. He was a man who remains highly controversial due to his methods, claims of massive Soviet infiltration of Western intelligence agencies, and dozens within the CIA who had their careers affected by his molehunt.
A Soviet Britain?
The Cold War gave rise to many pieces of fiction looking at the decades long conflict between East and West. Few writers, though, seemed to have taken the time to have imagined what it might be like if the East came forth to occupy one of the major Western powers. One who did was prolific thriller writer Ted Allbeury who created a vision of a Britain under Soviet occupation with his 1982 novel All Our Tomorrows.
Kevin J. Anderson's 'Captain Nemo'
There are few authors whose works have stood the test of time more than Jules Verne. With a handful of classic novels and characters, he created timeless tales of adventure and science fiction. Suppose though that those tales and some of his most iconic characters had a basis in fact?