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Warp Speed Warp Speed Paperback – 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 374 pages
  • Publisher: Baen Books 2006-04-25 (2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416520635
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416520634
  • ASIN: B001VV6RRM
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,793,444 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Travis S. Taylor: "Doc" Taylor to his friends:has earned his soubriquet the hard way: He has a doctorate in optical science and engineering, a master's degree in physics, a master's degree in aerospace engineering, a master's degree in astronomy, and a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering. Dr. Taylor has worked on various programs for the Department of Defense and NASA for the past sixteen years. He's currently working on several advanced propulsion concepts, very large space telescopes, space-based beamed energy systems, and next generation space launch concepts. He lives in Harvest, AL with his wife Karen and their daughter.

Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Avid_Reader on July 12, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read science fiction for quite a few decades, and I cannot recall a book that was more of a disappointment to me than Warp Speed.

The author's solid background in science (PhD in optical science, Masters in physics, aerospace and astronomy) and collaborations with John Ringo had me looking forward to a true science fiction book (with emphasis on science). The science side is the most solid part of the book... and yet one is asked to believe that creating a warp drive is a matter of Dr. Anson (the male lead - smarter than Einstein, amazing martial artist and wannabe astronaut whose grating first person narration is at delivered using a 8th to 10th grade level vocabulary and style) having a revolutionary insight during a painkiller induced blackout during which his mumbling about miniature pistons is heard by one of his PhD students who goes into the lab with another PhD candidate and within 36 hours have the theory solved AND a prototype of a perpetual energy generator ready for testing...or that this radical new 10 nanometer wide component which explodes with catastrophic results when not perfect is outsourced for scale-up production to a clumsy "local printed circuit board company" with weak quality control and processes - because that how DARPA would have you manufacture an energy source that generates 10 to the power of 20 joules (more energy than everybody on earth generates in an year).

I am willing to suspend some disbelief when reading a SF book - but the plot and the character development are also atrocious. The characters work on this technology which can change the world and completely turn the world economy on its head in "secret", but bring in random PhD candidates and hire random admin people off the street...
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Francis P. Golupski on December 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I seldom buy first books by new authors in hardback, but elected to do so in this case based upon the sample chapters I'd read at Baen's webpage. It hooked me enough on the story I was willing to spend the money NOW to buy the hardback, rather than waiting a year for the paperback edition. In my opinion, it was worth the money. Imagine - an SF book with Science in it. (Remember, guys? used to be that's what the S in SF was for.) Note to others - if you're not sure about this, go read the sample chapters at baen.com first, then buy if you like it.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By William N. Brown on September 27, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Someone once said that if you want to be a good writer you should write what you know. "Warp Speed" by Travis S. Taylor shows that not only does he have a good eye for story telling, but also that he knows a lot! The book is written in the first person perspective following Dr. Neil Anson Clemons, Physicist, Engineer and a University Professor. Anson, as his friends call him, is working on developing alternative propulsion systems for the space program. In other words he's trying to find a way to make space travel more practical than strapping people to giant rockets and shooting them into the sky. Specifically he is working on developing a warp drive to allow faster than light travel.

The book takes a lot of interesting turns. In most science fiction that I've read the technologies are more of a back drop that facilitates the plot. "I want my character to fly like Superman so he has the Dyson 3000 anti-gravity belt", or even more simply, "my character has a sword made of energy, never mind how, he just does". In Taylor's book, the technology he uses starts almost with where we are today. It's set a few years in the future, but nothing seems extraordinarily out of place, no ray guns or teleportation. As Anson's work on the warp drive progresses a number of new technologies are brought into play besides the warp drive but the reader is not asked to simply accept them, rather, they become a part of their logical development. In fact it all was introduced so realistically that I'm surprised we haven't already developed many of the things Anson and his team discover.

The focus on the technology in "Warp Speed" doesn't mean the characters are skipped or glossed over.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on December 23, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I bought this on the strength of the short story that appeared in the anthology "Cosmic Tales". Taylor wrote a story and contributed an essay with science to back up the story. It reminded me of what Charles Sheffield did with his "McAndrew" stories.

A fun first novel. I read it in two nights; stayed up into the wee hours last night to finish it. I look forward to seeing more from him and seeing how he matures as a writer.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Jari Aalto on December 8, 2008
Format: Hardcover
CONTENTS

This 375 page book is roughly divided into two sections. In first section the Dr. Anson, a brilliant mathematician whose subconscious talks to himself with the voice and images of the late Albert Einstein, is running short of money as a NASA subcontractor. He is in desperate need to get some results in his "warp experiment lab". A small micro explosion during experiments causes a brief human tragedy and the novel dwells into a "personal caring" sidetrack for a while. In spite of the setbacks things progress smoothly and the lab flourish. The reader is brought to the orbit of earth where the final test of warp technology is about to take place. But the cover page prologue's sinister words echo in vacuum: "Mission control, ... The Shuttle Orbiter has been completely destroyed by some type of internal explosion. The cause is unknown ... (we) are the only survivors. We each have ... roughly two hours and 39 minutes of air left. Please advise on possible rescue scenario". This is the part 1 of the story that ends somewhere at page 150.

After reading nearly half of the book you would expect to guess that the rest (part 2) is about the thrill to see how the space rescue goes and how the technology gets improved. Nothing could be different. The reader is taken to a roller coaster ride without a warning. There comes the villains, there comes the conspiracy, there comes the superpowers and dirty secrets of espionage, there comes save-the-earth scenarios within days! The pace of the events is breathtaking to the page count that is left. No. That's not over yet. At the end the space is explored within 100 AU's distance and stars are only in hands reach a way. At the end all live happily ever after.

IMPRESSIONS

Huh. Well. Umph.
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