Water receives Five Star review from Readers’ Favorite

Check out this Five Star review from Readers’ Favorite for Water: Generation Mars, Book Three!

Water is a work of fiction in the adventure, science fiction, and action genres. It is the third novel of the Generation Mars series and is suitable for middle-grade and young adult readers alike. Penned by author Douglas D. Meredith with illustrations by artist Luis Peres, the story explores the vital role of water on Mars, where it serves as the key to survival and economic prosperity for settlers. For two sisters and their classmates, a routine exploration of an abandoned ice mine turns into a harrowing fight for survival when a seismic event traps them in a treacherous labyrinth of ice, testing their resilience and courage.

Author Douglas D. Meredith has crafted a thrilling and immersive read that will totally transport its young readers to the Red Planet with a fantastic sense of atmosphere and multi-sensory description. Meredith has a great balance of science fiction with elements of survival and adventure, creating a gripping narrative that keeps readers on the edge of their seats and rooting for the characters because they’re realistic and authentic. As Cas, Ori, and their classmates navigate the dangers of the icy labyrinth, I found myself highly impressed by their ingenuity, bravery, and personal growth in the face of adversity. The vivid descriptions of Martian landscapes and the challenges posed by the hostile environment added new excitement and dangers to keep the plot fresh, and I loved some of the bigger emotional twists toward the end of the tale. I was also absolutely in love with the illustrations by artist Luis Peres, which looked as though they had fallen straight out of the author’s mind onto the page. Overall, Water is a captivating addition to the series, and I would not hesitate to recommend it and the series as a whole to young readers everywhere looking for exciting, compelling adventures.

-Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers’ Favorite


Rocket fuel

The next book is turning into an epic. Decided I needed more delta-v to pull it off. This oughta do it.

Sweet Maria’s, fueling writers and rocket scientists since 1997.


Is cannibalism appropriate for middle grade? Asking for a friend…

But seriously, this next book is shaping up to push the envelope. Several envelopes. All the envelopes, maybe.

image: Twemoji (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Twemoji12_1f914.svg), https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/deed.en, unaltered

Starship launch

SpaceX successfully launched Starship this week. Here’s some perspective on what that means for our future in space.

From the article:

“This means that, within a year or so, SpaceX will have a rocket that costs about $30 million and lifts 100 to 150 metric tons to low-Earth orbit.

Bluntly, this is absurd.”

And very very cool.



“Hunger, or the fear of it, has always played a major role in determining the actions and attitudes of man. In every age and every land people have starved…”

More light reading in preparation for the next book in the Generation Mars series: Food.

Light reading

Some light reading for the next book. In 1945, thirty-six men volunteered for the first scientific study of the effects of starvation. It wasn’t pretty.

Really feeling sorry for my main characters right now. I had a cookie about an hour ago, and my stomach is already grumbling.

(Astute followers will notice this wasn’t in the to-read stack image I posted recently. Research requires flexibility.)

So much to read

My current to-read stack, in no particular order. (This is in addition to a gazillion papers and articles on orbital dynamics, Earth-Mars cyclers, starvation, malnutrition, and food production on Mars that I am reading for the next book.)

What’s in yours? 


I just listened to the latest episode of the Song Exploder podcast, which discusses Green Day’s Basket Case (https://songexploder.net/green-day). Turns out that the epochal ode to questionable mental health started out as a love song. Go listen to a few minutes right now, from 2:45 to about 5:10. Or listen to the whole thing if you want. I’ll wait…

That’s about how writing a book works for me (minus the crystal meth). Honestly, I don’t know exactly how I do it. I have an idea for a story; I read a bunch of stuff; I start typing every day: fragments, Socratic dialogues, technical notes, whatever bubbles up into my consciousness; eventually, the story begins to take shape and I move out of the journaling phase and into the real writing. And then surprises happen: ideas that sound good one day seem terrible the next; minor characters suddenly take on personalities that require a major plot thread; other threads that seemed critical lose their meaning and are cast aside. Finally, almost mysteriously, there is a book, and I can say with certainty that it ends up nowhere I might have guessed when I set out with that first idea.

I love that. The surprise is why I write. I can’t speak for others, but I would guess that even the most organized and methodical writers cherish that surprise when it happens. I hope they do.

(image: first draft of Kerouac’s On the Road, cc-by-sa-2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kerouac_ontheroad_scroll.jpg)

Dawn Colony

“What brought you to Mars?” said Ori. The adults in the colony had grown up on one planet then decided to move to another. Why they did this was a topic that interested all the kids.

“It was the culture,” said Katy. “I realized Dawn was the greatest experiment in human culture ever conducted, so I came to see it myself. I only planned to be here one year, but then the Schism occurred.” Ori knew that term meant the time when the Martian colonists refused to return to Earth. “I knew the changes that would cause would be profound,” said Katy, “and I had to be here to record them.” She paused, remembering. “That’s partly true, at least. But, also, I loved what I saw happening on Mars and wanted to be part of it. So, when the last transport left for Earth, I stayed.”

From Water: Generation Mars, Book Three. Available now at https://www.amazon.com/Water-Generation-Mars-Book-Three/dp/1733731067


Image: Dawn Colony mission patch