Boss is our protagonist, a loner with an affinity for diving old wrecks, derelict spaceships long-forgotten but potential sources of treasure, tech, and – most important of all so far as Boss is concerned – rich historical significance.  And when Boss discovers a thousand year old ship in a remote region of space, she believes she may have hit the jackpot.  She assembles a team of trusted veterans to help her in exploring the incredible find but quickly discovers there is far more to the ancient Dignity Vessel than she could have imagined.  It holds a dangerous but incalculably valuable secret that will fray nerves, seal betrayals, take lives, and quite possibly hold the key to not only galactic conquest but an answers to the mysterious “Room of Lost Souls” incident that has haunted our heroine since childhood.

I’m pleased to say that Diving into the Wreck is a novel that more than lives up to its intriguing premise, offering up a thrilling SF take on deep-sea diving by transposing the perilous pursuit for sunken treasure to the outer reaches of space.  Rusch’s sparse prose style is in marked contrast to the complex dilemmas and interrelationships that run throughout the book, and yet this economy of language – a voice perfectly suited to Boss’s no-nonsense disposition – is one of the many things that makes Diving into the Wreck such a compelling read.  The story moves along at a brisk pace, introducing some fascinating hard SF elements, yet never bogging the reader down in the details.  In many ways, it reminded me of the works of some of the grandmasters of science fiction in its ability to deliver ideas that are intellectually challenging, theoretically plausible and, above all else, accessible to those who may not possess a degree in quantum mechanics.  Like, you’ll no doubt be surprised to learn, me.

The book is divided into three sections: Diving into the Wreck (which deals with the initial salvage operation and discovery aboard the Dignity Vessel), The Room of Lost Souls (that examines the bizarre, seemingly otherworldly anomaly aboard an abandoned space station), and The Heart of the Machine (that sees Boss lead a new team on a return dive to the Dignity Vessel for a final reckoning).  I breezed through the first part but will admit to being thrown by the time cut and seemingly divergent developments that kick off the second part of the book.  I feared that the engaging mystery introduced early on would merely serve as an introduction to Boss and her world, something to hook the reader and set down the ground rules that would never be fully explored to my satisfaction. Well, how wrong I was.  Rusch throws a feint, then proceeds to expertly weave together the seemingly disparate pieces of what turns out to be a most satisfying narrative tapestry.

My first Kristine Kathryn Rusch book, but certainly not my last.  Loved it.  Your thoughts?  And, along with those thoughts, throw in some questions as well for the author who has kindly agreed to swing by and visit with us.

Well, back in the office today for most of the writers (with the exception of Robert Cooper who, at last report, was still partying at Cowboys Stadium) as we kick off pre-production on SGU’s second season.  We settled in and immediately got down to business – discussing the NFL playoffs, our respective Christmas holidays, and, of course, what I ate in Tokyo.  This was followed by Paul, Carl, and I commiserating over our respective scripts – which took us to lunch…

Carl runs through his usual “WTF did I order?” lunch routine.
This is what Paul ordered: apparently, a take-out container filled with lawn trimmings. Not exactly what he expected from the good folk at Cactus Club.

Carl savors his lunch.

Lawren shows off those GQ good looks.

Hey, Carl, how's the script coming along? Oh, uh, never mind.

Ashleigh informed me that she may be going to...get this...Tokyo! Can you believe it?! When I asked her to go to Tokyo, she told me she already had plans, but when her boyfriend asks, she's suddenly got all the free time in the world. She's clearly playing favorites.

The rest of the afternoon was devoted to more chitchat and trying to figure out why the Bridge Studios decided to upgrade the perfectly-fine network so that, now, no one can either print or stay online for any significant amount of time.  Brad couldn’t open his script and when he tried to print it, had the page count balloon to about 117 pages.  Paul, now wearing his Exec Producer’s hat for the show’s second season, made the executive call and informed him: “Yeah, that’s too long.”  I, on the other hand, smell a two-parter.

Off to work-out!  I’m doing two-a-days for as long as I last…

54
Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
chevron7
chevron7

I vote for a super long episode…..Syffy’s gotta love that right?

You deleted your print connection on your laptop and re-connected yeah?

Cheers, Chev

p.s. I prematurely thought yesterday’s game was all over. Way to go Green Bay for making it interesting. We had people from all over the world watching & tweeting – was fun!

p.p.s ….awesome Ashleigh *giggles*

Jon K.
Jon K.

Man this is really crazy but a few weeks ago I was at the bookstore and decided to pick up that book not even knowing it was the book of the month. I quite enjoyed the book though at times found the second and third parts a little slow but in the end found the book quite enjoyable. The characters involved were very interesting and I really started to care for them. However I didn’t like the idea of lost technology. Maybe i’m wrong but i don’t see people losing something like true stealth technology which would be such an important discovery.

Jenny Robin

Rob could have stopped by to say ‘hi’ to me while he was in town Saturday at the Cowboys game. Alas, I was at drum corps rehearsal and a post-rehearsal party with my pals in the hornline. We did watch the game, and I thought I saw Rob Cooper amongst the 93,000 people in the crowd, but I couldn’t be quite sure. guffaw

Interesting note, though…many of the guys who perform in the drumline at Cowboys stadium were in the drumline of my drum and bugle corps last year. And the gentleman who writes their music and directs them is our percussion caption head (Paul Rennick).

All this probably means nothing to you, but it’s important to me and others in the world of music, so there you have it.

Thornyrose
Thornyrose

Don’t have my copy of Diving the Wreck at hand, so just some extemporanious comments on the book.
First, I really liked this book. I thought it was an intriguing premise to have characters who lived by seeking out and going over abandoned vessels or wrecks, especially as a tourist attraction. I also found the idea of a spacefaring human civilizatoin that had regressed technologically, but still spacefaring, to be somewhat refreshing.
The structure of the book caught me off guard, as the first section of the book came to a close, and we were suddenly propelled years into the future. And I was slow on the uptake that the second section actually tied into the first part of the book. The mystery of the room, the relevation of the main character’s father’s role in events, all managed to catch me off guard. I actually found the final third of the book to be the weakest, though this is not to say I didn’t like it. It’s just that the mystique of the ancient earth vessel had been pulled back, and the story seemed a much more straightforward space opera type of tale.
Among things tht stood out to me included the characters. I almost felt as if I were watching an artist in the park drawing a sketch of a customer. With a few broad strokes of the pen, then some quick shadowing put in, we’re left with portrait that is both more life-like and more etherial than the reality. As the story unfolds, it feels as if the characters are full fleshed. It’s only when I sit back and consider each of the characters that I realize how little we know of them. This thus draws me into the book as if I were trying to solve some mystery being offered. The same applies to the technology. Rather than pages of technobabble we’re offered only the barest information on what the technology does, and nothing of the details of the how. This succeeds in keeping the pace of the book moving at a clip that prevents the reader from easily putting the book down.
I’ll get the book out and perhaps add some comments tomorrow; as of now, time to bed. thanks for bringing up this book for the BotM club, and looking forward to next month’s offering.

gordon

I have to thank you for choosing this book for January’s BOTM because I thoroughly enjoyed it. Of the books I’ve read lately, this is one of my favourites.

My question: Do you dive?

Wahlyn
Wahlyn

I really enjoyed this book. It’s one of the first from the book club that I’ve actually read in time to discuss it.

The details that she put in, whether it be the divers having to remember footholds and watch for things that could tear their suits to being able to tell the difference between someone land-born and those raised in space by the way they walked and their muscle mass, really impressed me. In general, I just loved the idea of taking deep sea divers and setting it in space.

I vaguely remember being thrown by the shift in the story during the second part as well but was equally happy when it all tied together in the end.

One other thing I liked was the facets interlaced throughout the story of how little we as humans trust one another and the consequences that follow as a result.

Thanks for introducing it to me, Joe!

I guess the only question I can think of at the moment for Kristine Kathryn Rusch is:

What was your inspiration for setting deep sea divers in space? Also, thank you for an excellent story!

Michelle

Wait, if Paul is an exec producer this year, does that mean you are, too? I thought you were a bonded pair!

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

Nice to see everyone, especially Carl!

Very tired – just crawling off to bed, but wanted to wish you a good night, Joe…and hope all is well with you, and yours. Take care, sir!

das

Gilder
Gilder

@JennyRobin

Texas…a small town disguised as a state.

In other words, it’s a small world.

sheryl
sheryl

Joe, well I pretty much got my answer to the e-mail I sent you. It was someone who DID NOT know anything. I thought it was an official source, but that was wrong. If you see Mark S. , tell him I said thanks for responding to my question. @ the movie! He is a nice guy. Sheryl.

jlgrand
jlgrand

Still losing weight since your trip?

Major D. Davis
Major D. Davis

Ok sorry to say but pleasssseee. No more draw oout two parters. I can accept darkness and light being one cause you are trying to establish the characters and setting, but it’s season two. Let’s pick up the pace!!!!!

Thanks so much,
Major D. Davis

DP
DP

Gonna’ have to put off commenting on Diving into the Wreck until tomorrow. I’m writing way too much.

pg15

I smell a 2-parter too; is it contagious?

Seriously though, 117 pages is longer than even 2 scripts! There’s no way that can be cut down to 1 episode and still maintain the impact. I loved Darkness and Light, and if it were cut down to 1 episode, it would’ve lost a lot of the many, many character moments.

Put me down as a vote for a 2-parter!

Speaking of Brad script, what’s going on in the hierachy, anyway? Paul is Executive Producer? Congratulations, Mr. Mullie!! So what does that mean? There are 4 Exec Producers now (Brad, Rob, Paul, Carl)? Or did one or more of them step down?

@ Major D. Davis: Hey man! I’ve been busy adjusting back to University! Lots of work to be done!

@ Tammy “Fists of Fury” Dixon: Hey hey! It’s good to be back! Why, I get my energy from you guys, of course! Yes, I covertly drain your life forces in order to provide you all with witty comedy. wink Thank you for the compliments on the titles!

@ das: That’s a “no” on the googling then. wink

Oneillfan
Oneillfan

Hi, I’ve been reading your blog for a while and I meant to ask. Are you a fan of Lost? Coz the island itself is a stargate…

Also, if you could take an unlimited supply of one food item only before being stranded on an island, what would it be?

cat4444
cat4444

I quite enjoyed “Diving into the Wreck”. Although, I have to admit that I also found the shift between the first and second parts to be quite jarring. I was actually thinking that the book was going to be a collection of “short stories” at that the transition rather than an integrated whole. However, it was a nice surprise to find events actually circling around to tie back into the first section.

Questions for Ms. Rusch:

1. Are you a diver? If so, are you certified as a wreck diver? If not, did you research the subject or speak to people that are certified wreck divers in order to be as true to the requirements as possible? Some combination of the two?

2. I never would have associated diving in the ocean with “diving” a wrecked spaceship. How did the idea for that type of association develop for you?

3. Regarding the “Room of Lost Souls”, I found it kind of odd that the Room would reveal more of the station outward from the central core as the stealth field collapsed. I would expect a collapse to, by definition, fall inward. Is this an effect of the “dimensional rift” created by the stealth technology (i.e., does the Room expand in Boss’ reality as it is drawn through the rift from its “original” reality)?

4. I was reading a book the other day on character naming in stories, and there was a section dealing with using a “title” of some kind for a character rather than actually assigning a name. Did you consciously decide not to give your character a name and simply refer to her as “Boss” or did that aspect develop as the story was being written?

5. Not a question, simply a comment: I quite enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more of your stories. Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions.

ytimynona
ytimynona

Hey! It’s Ashleigh! Glad to see she survived the hiatus okay. grin

Hey, Carl too! grin (Remember to tell him to avoid sharp pointy objects!)

Candace
Candace

I think you’ll enjoy the Otherland series…of course…I only read the first one before I got into another series, LOL, so I don’t even really remember the first book, other than remembering that I really liked it, and it having something to do about this wierd computer world that someone was taking over…LOL

In other news, I am now reading Clash of Kings…which I’m completely enjoying so far. I LOVE this series.

SebiMeyer

This may interest the Stargate Fan crowd: The BBC is reporting a new dig new the great pyramids in Egypt proves they were not build by slaves: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8453026.stm

They do, however, leave the question open WHY they were build. So landing platforms are still an option. smile

Skontel
Skontel

I really want to like this book. And there are many things I *do* like about the book. But at the same time, there are things that bother me. First off, I loved the idea of something very old being technologically advanced beyond the current state of technology. It’s one of the main things that attracted me to the SGA. It’s something I’m still hoping for in the SGU. It was a huge draw for me to this book. I like the honesty in the character of Boss. Even when she knows she is doing something for the wrong reasons, and against her character, she is honest about it (to herself). I liked the surprise basket (the weave). The way the Room connects to the story, the way we discover the reason for trouble when they get out of the Room. The idea behind why Boss was able to get out of the Room. Things like that. Very clever ideas, very clever way to put them together. I _like_ it! But… I never quite got into the characters, especially the character of Boss. That really bothers me given the first-person narrative, and is perhaps surprising in view of how much of the book focuses on the characters. For example, there is a lot of writing about the anger Boss has toward her father, but I never feel it. Somehow, the slew of words never crossed the rational into emotional for me. Yes, I read the words, and yes, my logic and understanding tells me what they mean, that she is angry. But it all feels as if it’s coming from someone lying to you, as if there is an element of sincerity missing. And this is not the only example. Even though the book is a first-person narrative, the entire time I felt as if I was looking at Boss from the outside. Most of the time I questioned if she was being honest when saying what she was feeling. The only time I got close to feeling what she was experiencing was the excitement of the dive, or apprehension of entering the Room. But overall I just didn’t “believe” what she was feeling. And that made it difficult for me to fully accept the character. Unfortunately, this wasn’t limited to the Boss’ character. I completely did not understand the character of Squishy, for example. I never felt her motives, didn’t understand her constant attitude, just didn’t buy it. I read the words, and they did register. I *understood* that she was bothered by the technology discussed (avoiding spoilers here), I just didn’t *feel* it. I wanted to, though, which made me struggle continually with that aspect of the book. I was surprised at the end of the book that the lack of intricate techno-speak didn’t bother me so much. It speaks a lot about the parts of the book I did like. Because, once again, there are many things I like about the book, and I want it to… Read more »

otros ojos
otros ojos

I’ve had little time to read for pleasure for quite a while now, and am not happy about that at all, but will spare you my rant. To be honest, though, I’m stuck in the rant’s complicated third paragraph — the one where (1) I’m working out till I’m too drained to do anything besides watch BTVS DVD’s (oh, and Bridget Jones’s Diary, a Christmas gag gift — I am SO not laughing, except ’cause it’s always very funny) because I got fairly lazy over the past 10 months or so — karma’s a bitch, eh? *hears Chev laughing*; and (2) I keep forgetting to get the lamp for wintertime blues, like the one Das has — one reason I’m jonesing for vacation time in the mostly sunny Colorado Rockies. Free lodgings (my grandfather’s second family lives there), free food as long as I do my share of the cooking (no prob!), and a discount on lift tickets — hard to beat that, unless you’d rather be someplace warm where you can get a tan on more than just your face. Will get my chance soon enough.

I’m not going to ask if any of that made sense.

Well, more importantly, I wanted to say thanks for the pics — always love them, but the ones of everyone at The Bridge are special — and for your compelling review of Diving into the Wreck, which I now *have* to have for vacation reading. (Buffy and Angel will just have to languish for a while. ‘S okay — they were looking pretty, uh, happy when I had to bail the other night.) This book sounds like a really great read, so thanks much for the glowing reco.

HBMC
HBMC

Where’s Brad?

Joshwilko
Joshwilko

Hey again Joe.

Any plans on visting “sunny” England in the near future? Also, what was the first tv show you wrote for, was it Stargate, or something earlier?

Cheers,
Josh

Rich G
Rich G

I enjoyed the book. Once I found that it was actually a compilation of 3 novella-length stories the structure made a little more sense.

I was truly surprised at the fate of at least one character. Some mysteries are revealed, while some go unsolved. I’d look forward to a follow-on were one to be announced.

Boss undergoes a change in motive towards the end of the book that’s kinda odd given her actions throughout. I wonder if the author will comment on that. It kind of came out of left field.

I thought the ‘diving’ metaphor transferred well into the space-walking, as others have mentioned. Air, footholds, etc. I’m not a diver but it seemed like a good fit.

I’ve just started to get into this sort of space/tech genre – I’ve gotten into John Hemry’s “Lost Fleet” books as well as bought the first Honor Harrington book. I quite like them so far.

Tammy Dixon
Tammy Dixon

PG15: That explanation explains a lot!

How does Carl stay so thin?

Questions/Comments for Kristine Kathryn Rusch:

I enjoyed reading Diving Into The Wreck. I found it intriguing you segregated people into what kind of gravities they were exposed to as children. I liked the way these low/zero gravity children could be differentiated based on appearances. I suppose medical advances kept these individuals bones from losing too many minerals? So that when they switched to a normal earth gravity, they didn’t have the problems with broken bones? Have you done any cave diving? Sleath technology, fascinating! Thank you, for participating in this Q & A!