Hardcore, You Know the Score

Just read Greg Egan’s “The Clockwork Rocket” – most audacious hard SF book in years. Alt universe where, as far as I can tell, the space-time metric has been rejigged into some kind of pseudo-quaternion formulation with time-symmetry available via non-commutative space transformations (second derivative) and c now not invariant but an inverse function of frequency. E=mc2 now becomes a 4-element rotational matrix, and momentum (and hence potential energy) now a function of observer’s rotational frame with negative and imaginative values possible. Chemistry thus resembles slow neutron nuclear physics in terms of energy liberation. Oh yeah, some alien characters as well with bizarre sex behavior. THIS IS WHAT HARDCORE MEANS IN SF!

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