Opening this weekend is the DC Comics movie, Aquaman, the first full-length feature film about an creature who is half-man, half fish. Arthur Curry, the heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis must lead his people against his half-brother Orm, who plans to unite the underwater kingdoms and fight the surface world. It’s going to be an exciting superhero to add to the DC collection.
The myth of mermen and mermaids has a place in Greek, Irish, Finnish and other mythologies. Best known is Poseidon, king of the underworld, and his son, Triton, who used a conch shell to call his people. Often, mermen have human torsos, but fish tails.
My science fiction novel, SLEEPERS, draws upon the mermen mythology but takes it in a fresh direction. On the planet Rison, people evolved to be able to breath underwater and on land. Humanoid in shape, they have gills under their arms.
Because this was science fiction not mythology or fantasy, though, I worked through many issues in trying to figure out how humanoids could function underwater. For example, one problem with living in the seas is the temperature. Deep oceans are cold, about 32-38 degrees Fahrenheit (0-3 degrees Celsius). Seals have waterproof fur and whales have blubber (fat) to keep them warm. How could a humanoid survive the cold without protection?
In SLEEPERS, the aliens have a magma blood cell that runs hot and is activated by the ocean depths. The deeper they go and the more pressure their bodies experience, the hotter the magma cells run, keeping their body temperature regulated.
NOT A SUPERHERO LIKE AQUAMAN
SLEEPERS isn’t a superhero novel like Aquaman. Instead, it’s a YA SciFi saga that begins when scientists on planet Rison realize that their planet is going to implode. They warn their governments years before it happens. Of course, they search for ways to stop the planetary implosion, but they are unsuccessful. They also sent out spaceship probes. They searched the universe for a suitable planet to which they could move.
Like any political situation, there were naysayers who slowed down the search for a new home. But they lucked out when they got a message from Earth. The Arecibo Message (this part is based in fact!) was a 1974 radio message sent toward globular star cluster M13 in hopes of encountering intelligent life.
Once contact was made with Earth, the Risons begged for a chance to evacuate people to Earth. “You only live on land,” they said. “Allow us to live in the seas.”
DO WE ALLOW IMMIGRANTS OR NOT?
Essentially, it’s the question faced over and over by own own countries as they face immigrants and refugees fleeing this conflict or that war. Should we/could we/will we allow these foreigners—these aliens—to enter our country. It will be uncomfortable. They’ll take our jobs, food, land, and more, we worry. The humanitarian needs are weighted against our selfish desires to take care of our own homes. In many ways, the Blue Planets World series is a commentary on our strengths, weaknesses and struggles as humans as we consider other humans in distress.
But at it’s core, it’s an adventure that takes the teen reader on a thrilling ride.
READ the FREE PREQUEL.
The series is set up in the prequel, which is the story of First Contact between Risonians and Earth. We guarantee that you’ll be able to read this ebook on the device of your choice.