Fiction With Science, Not Science Fiction

Chevy Chase LibraryRead Feed

Fiction With Science, Not Science Fiction

Even those of you who may question the existence of atoms live by the laws of science.  The laws of science apply universally, even in fiction.  Some literary worlds use those laws to solve mysteries, explore individual lives, or test scientific limits.  Others use them to speculate what might have been or may be.  Let’s leave the “What If?” questions for another day--here are some books that incorporate scientific knowledge without falling into science fiction.  
 
The Sweetness at the Bottom of a Pie by Alan Bradley
Flavia de Luce, 11, is an aspiring chemist.  When there is a murder on her family’s estate and her father is accused, Flavia explores her passion for poison. 
 
Mr. Churchill’s Secretary by Susan Elia MacNeal
Maggie Hope uses her math prowess and code breaking know-how to thwart an assassination attempt in WWII-era England.  Join her as she fights both attempts against the government and rampant sexism. 
 
Decoded by Mai Jia
A modern look at cryptography and a Chinese intelligence organization, this story weaves complex math theory into a spy thriller.  Originally published in 2002 in China, it was recently translated into English and gained a whole new audience.
 
The Man without a Shadow by Joyce Carol Oates
A love story between an amnesiac and the neuroscientist who studies him, master storyteller Oates has created a story that is as much a study of the mind and memory as the human heart. 
 
Deja Dead by Kathy Reichs
Fictional Dr. Temperance Brennan’s life mirror’s that of her creator, Dr. Kathy Reichs.  A forensic anthropologist, Tempe, uses her sharp mind to help solve crimes.