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Publisher's Summary

In this hour, when you're fed up with our world, take a mental holiday. We do. There are other worlds you can visit, like the one Patrick Rothfuss created and turned into a best-selling phenomenon. His first novel The Name of the Wind climbed its way to the top of the list. His second novel The Wise Man's Fear, started there. He tells Jim Fleming how the world came into being.

Then, another world you might try is the past. In Connie Willis' world historians can actually go there to study. In two new novels, Blackout and All Clear Willis takes us to World War II. She tells Anne Strainchamps why the past is a natural subject for a science fiction writer.

Next, the past is a fascinating place to visit, especially when you consider how little it would take to make it an entirely different place. Political analyst Jeff Greenfield has lived through fifty years of world history, and knows first hand how small things matter. He tells Jim Fleming about his novel Then Everything Changed.

Finally, are alternative universes purely the stuff of make believe? Or could they actually exist? Recent discoveries in physics and cosmology have led many scientists to consider the possibility that our world is one among many. Certainly physicist Brian Greene thinks so. He makes the case in his new book The Hidden Reality – Parallel Universes and the Deep Laws of the Cosmos. Steve Paulson finds it all a little puzzling. [Broadcast Date: May 4, 2011]

Listen to

  • The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
  • Blackout and All Clear by Connie Willis
  • The Hidden Reality by Brian Greene
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  • (P) and ©2011 Wisconsin Public Radio

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