Sunday, November 15, 2015

Science in Fiction (#10): Inherit the Stars by Tessa Elwood and Wandering Star by Romina Russell

Welcome to this month's Science in Fiction feature! Science in Fiction is a meme I created to showcase the wonderful aspects of science in Young Adult fiction novels. For more information and previous feature, check out the "Science in Fiction" tag!

This month, I'm featuring Inherit the Stars by Tessa Elwood and Wandering Star by Romina Russell!


I didn't quite enjoy either of these books as much as I'd hoped, but I LOVE all things space- and intergalactic-related. Both of these books involve interplanetary relations, traveling between planets and through the solar system in each book. The world building of a space opera science fiction novel is so intricate and complex, and it's no wonder how much I love space-related novels. I'm a huge Star Wars fan too (and yes, I am VERY excited for the upcoming movie!).

Anyway! I had a hard time coming up with a topic that I hadn't already discussed in previous posts, as well as I had a hard time finding something environment-related. Space definitely falls under the category of science, but what specifically did I want to discuss? In this month's Science in Fiction post, I'm going to talk about all the latest news relating to space!


- Scientists have released 3D maps of Pluto's surface - and there are VOLCANOES! Which is so weird and fascinating because Pluto's geology is very different from Earth's, as well as its climate and atmosphere.

Pluto's cratered surface. Photo from NASA/Johns Hopkins APL.

- Debris/space junk fell from the sky on Friday, landing off the coast of Sri Lanka! You can watch some observations and read about it HERE.

- A record-setting gamma-ray pulsar was captured by the  Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope’s Large Area Telescope. This pulsar is so cool because it is the first ever to be seen outside of the Milky Way galaxy!

Gamma-ray pulsar PSR J0540-6919, the first to be seen outside of the Milky way. Also captured is PSR J0537-6910. Photo from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

- One of Mars's moons, Phobos, is slowly being pulled apart by gravitational forces. This was just discovered, but it probably won't wrench apart itself for another 50 million years.

Grooves on Phobos, possibly due to tidal waves (i.e. gravitational forces). Photo from NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona.

- The Hubble Space Telescope has captured images of early and faint galaxies! There are about 250 galaxies in the new collection found, all of which are up to 900 million light years away (I personally would REALLY like to know how the scientists came up with that number).

Galaxy cluster MACSJ0717.5+3745. Photo from NASA, ESA and the HST Frontier Fields team.

And there is so much more happening! A new moon orbiting Pluto was discovered; there may be a real-life "Death Star" star, destroying the planet it's orbiting; a black hole in the Milky Way is swallowing space things, which is super scary. 

Space is a vast and very unexplored place of unimaginable depth and history! It's mind-boggling and so SO cool that humans have technology that can take images so far away. Maybe one day in the waaaay future, we'll be traveling planet-to-planet (galaxy-to-galaxy too?), like in Inherit the Stars and Wandering Star!


  1. There's a real life Death Star star destroying the planet it's orbiting??? NOW I need to know more about that for sure!!! Science is simply so awesome!!

    1. There IS! I was all like O_O There weren't any pictures (that would be difficult to capture), otherwise I would have said more about it. :D

  2. Is this death star in our solar system? cause I heard there was one in our solar system. I also heard that there was a planet similar to earth that they have spotted but it's like the size of our sun or bigger I think they said. Ugh its been a while, don't quote me on it, I saw it on the news lol. But I absolutely love all things space, so I am excited for the books above.

    1. It's a star destroying a planet that is orbiting it. Scientists predict that the Sun will eventually do the same to our solar system's planets... the article is HERE. :D

      And you are correct, about the planet! Apparently it's more like a Venus twin. :)

  3. This is so incredibly interesting - I love how you tie the real science to science fiction! I'll have to go read your review of Wandering Star now!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. This feature is when I get to let my environmental-engineering-nerdiness shine! :D Thank you so much, Nicole. :)

  4. Stunning post Alyssa. <3 Hugs. Thank you for sharing about it :D Yeah, these books doesn't sound that good, hih. BUT SPACE :D I want to travel in space so badly. Sigh. Yet it sounds so scary as well. Ack. But I want it, even so :)

    1. LOL. They weren't *great*, and I probably wouldn't recommend them. But I love all things space! It'd be so cool if we could do just that in the near future, Carina!


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