Sustainability is possible in this excerpt from climate change novel The Ministry for the Future


Between the COVID-19 pandemic, the ongoing ravages of climate change, and even the social-political unrest accompanying this year’s American presidential election, the world is being battered by so many simultaneous crises that it can be hard to look to the future with any hope. Enter Kim Stanley Robinson. The prolific science-fiction author has a new book coming out next month titled The Ministry for the Future, and it portrays a vision of the near future where, if some people work hard enough, maybe everything won’t come to an end.

The central subject of The Ministry for the Future is climate change. The title refers to a fictional organization created under the umbrella of the Paris Agreement in order to combat climate change in a way that will keep the planet inhabitable for future generations. “Science fiction” is maybe a semi-inaccurate descriptor, since everything that happens in The Ministry

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Book excerpt: ‘The Smallest Lights in the Universe’

Science, even science about the heavens, is done by people, astronomer Sara Seager reminds us throughout her new memoir, “The Smallest Lights in the Universe” (Crown, 2020).

For Seager, a renowned astronomer and planetary scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, doing science means searching for another Earth around a distant star. But being human means enduring a difficult childhood, exploring northern Canada, raising two sons, losing her husband to cancer, then falling in love anew. Her grace joining the personal and the scientific begins with the book itself, as you’ll read in the prologue below.

(Read an interview with Sara Seager about the book.)

Related: Best space and sci-fi books for 2020

The Smallest Lights in the Universe: A Memoir
Crown, 2020 | $25.20 on Amazon
In this luminous memoir, an MIT astrophysicist must reinvent herself in the wake of tragedy and

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