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My Top 10 Sci-Fi/Fantasy Novels: #5 – Doomsday Book

April 26, 2011 Leave a comment

#5 – Doomsday Book by Connie Willis (1992)



Another novel by Connie Willis which follows time travelling historians. This time, a history student is sent back to the 14th century, further back in time than any history student before her.

She wishes to go back to the 1320, but she ‘accidentally’ arrives in the year 1348; the time of the Black Death epidemic in England.

The story then switches back and forth between the 14 century and the 21st century, where a history professor desperately tries to bring his lost student home. However, another wrench is thrown in the machinery when a flu epidemic breaks out in the 21st century as well.

Is it possible the Black Death came forward in time?

Despite the dark overtones of being in the worst flu epidemic in history, Willis manages to make this more of a dark-comedy than a straight up thriller.

The novel won both the Hugo and Nebula awards and is considered one of the greatest works of science fiction in recent history.

All Entries

#10 – Watership Down

#9 – The Harry Potter Series

#8 – The Wheel of Time Series

#7 – The Stars My Destination

#6 – To Say Nothing of the Dog

#5 – Doomsday Book

#4 – Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal

#3 – The Farseer Trilogy

#2 – Flowers for Algernon

#1 – The Martian Chronicles

Decapitated Gladiators Found in U.K.!

June 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Everybody loves Gladiators! Although modern day hand-to-hand combat doesn’t involve swords or shields (or lions or tigers), we all have that little bit of blood lust that makes watch UFC, and even the WWE.

It seems archeologists working near York in the U.K., a town roughly 300 km north of London, believe they have found a “Gladiator Graveyard”.

The site has yielded 80 skeletons in the past 10 years. Many of those buried were decapitated prior to being buried. Some of the archeologists believe this is evidence that the skeletons were gladiators, as being decapitated was often an act of mercy for gladiators suffering serious injuries during combat. One skeleton even shows evidence of a large animal bite, such as a lion.

The skeletons date back to between the 1st century and the 4th century A.D., when this area was one of the largest settlements of Roman Britain. Gladiators would periodically travel the area to put on combat shows.

It is not totally conclusive that all these skeletons are Gladitors. Some believe they could be remnants of an army. But the evidence is starting to mount that this is indeed a resting place for a large number of Gladiators.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m going to wrap up this blog post and go watch Russell Crowe decapitate some opponents in the Collosseum…