Author Spotlight
Richard Penn
Asteroid Expedition Guide By Richard Penn
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In 2045, seven ships will carry two thousand men, women and children out into the asteroid belt. Not to visit, but to live there permanently. This small book, published a year earlier, is a guide for... More > applicants, telling them how they will live, the skills they need, and even the human rights charter they must agree to before they go. Living in crowded ships will be hard and risky, but they see a chance to build a new community and head for the stars.< Less
Genealogy of Thorold and Marjorie Penn By Richard Penn
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This book is the result of years of research into one family, tracing back the male and female lines, the mothers as well as the fathers. The work was started by Thorold Penn, my father, and carried... More > on by myself for nearly twenty years. You may find an interest in specific people, maybe to help your own research. It will also be relevant if you have an interest in a specific place (see list below), as a piece of social history, a slice through time. None of the people are particularly important, they occupy the middle class in every generation. The book may also be of interest if you are considering research into your own family history; you could create this kind of thing for your own ancestors, or hire a professional to do the same. In some ways, I have been lucky in my choice of ancestors - publicans are one of the few professions recorded in official documents as far back as the seventeenth century, and I have a lot of innkeepers in my tree.< Less
Mutiny Near Earth By Richard Penn
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My name is Corinne Hansen, and I’m an engineer. If you live on Earth, you think that's a desk job, designing things with computers for a robot to build, a thousand miles away. But I live in... More > space. We do design things, but then we build them ourselves. When they break, we fix them. The things we make aren’t meant to be pretty, or to make money. If I make something wrong, a pipe or a valve, a ship or a station, it can kill me. Kill everyone I love. So I’m careful. But if I make everything right, and we’re lucky, we travel to a place nobody has ever been before. And we make a new life together. We’re going to live on the moons of Mars. Our kids will go to the asteroid belt. Humanity will go to the stars.< Less
Vessels and Stations of Earthspace and The Belt By Richard Penn
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The spread of humanity into the Solar System is a practical possibility for the next few decades, beginning with the reusable launch vehicles being developed right now by SpaceX and others. Once that... More > first step is economical, private companies will disrupt space using technologies that are available right now. With generic tools, and engineers who know how to use them, they will build ships and stations from the materials they find in space. This book shows how that might be, with illustrations and technical details for everything they build. It is a 'science-of' book, laying out the technical assumptions and the scenario behind my novels. Like them, it uses real-world science and feasible technology, avoiding all the fantasy elements that have crept into much science fiction. The book also provide illustrations and resources which other authors could use in writing their own science-based space fiction. (I recommend this Lulu edition - it has better paper and a title on the spine)< Less
The Little Nurse By Richard Penn, Marjorie Penn
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In this memoir, Marjorie Penn describes her experiences as a nurse during World War 2, beginning as a novice at the Royal Free in London, them moving on to other hospitals, including her native... More > Plymouth. Her matter-of-fact recall of the harrowing conditions of her patients, and her own near-death experiences in the blitz highlight the heroism of herself and all those on the "home front."< Less
The Dark Colony By Richard Penn
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Lisa liked a quiet, straightforward life in the space station at Terpsichore. Used to handling drunks and other minor skirmishes, she is not expecting any surprises. But when sent to investigate a... More > free floating object in the hold, she finds herself drawn into solving a mystery and leading a team to a secret colony where women and children are kept as slaves. This is hard science fiction, set in the near future, where space travel is difficult and takes many months. Colonists invent and build their own equipment from local materials. While truly isolated, they are part of a movement aiming to create thousands of independent communities throughout the Belt. (Second edition, with some new illustrations and minor revisions to the text)< Less
Spacetug Copenhagen By Richard Penn
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It seems like a routine tourist trip, taking wealthy guests to the luxury hotel in orbit. But Danish engineers Marius and Abby do not look like tourists, in their plain coveralls. The rich... More > industrialist and his family seem to fit the part better. Everyone on this trip has other plans in mind, plans that will lead to the next big step in humanity’s spread beyond our home planet. Set fifteen years in the future, inspired by the engineering cooperative Copenhagen Suborbitals, and relying only on realistic technology, Spacetug is founded on the belief that humanity's future in space depends on proper engineering.< Less
Freedom at Feronia By Richard Penn
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Lisa and her team of asteroid police have captured a nuclear rocket, and rescued a dozen kidnapped children. They need to return the children to Mars, but first they need to build a ship. The rebel... More > colony of Feronia is on their way, taken over by Christian fundamentalists. Can they return it to civilization, and what kind of government will lead to a long-term peace?< Less
Caverns of Procellarum By Richard Penn
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Engineer Marius and his people are doing a roaring trade in satellite repair and reclamation from their base in Earth Orbit. But then an emergency call comes in. A dozen Chinese miners are stranded... More > in a colony on the Moon. Can he and his apprentice Corinne build a ship and rescue the colony before a solar storm wipes them all out? See the solution they design, and follow them as they lead the colony to a new stage in humanity's spread into space.< Less