Monday, May 19, 2014

WILLEM VAN STOCKUM | Sci Fi Bio: "Time Bomber"

The cover of Time Bomber.
May 19, 2014–The print edition of a time-travel novel by Robert P. Wack has just been published, titled Time Bomber.  (An earlier edition was available, only as an eBook, under a different name and cover.)

Time Bomber is based on the life and research of a real person, Dr. Willem Jacob van Stockum, son of Captain Bram van Stockum and Olga Emily Boissevain.

Dr. van Stockum, a brilliant University of Maryland mathematics professor who had previously worked with Einstein at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Studies, becomes frustrated with American indifference about the war in Europe before Pearl Harbor. He abandons his promising academic career to join, first, the Royal Canadian Air Force and then a bomber pilot in Britain's Royal Air Force. Van Stockum flies RAF missions over Nazi-occupied France, behind the Normandy lines, before and after D-Day. On June 10, 1944, his plane is shot down.

All this is factual.

In the novel, van Stockum is not killed when his plane is shot down. Instead, he is rescued by stranded American paratroopers. While they fight for survival in the French countryside, they meet up with ruthless French Resistance fighters and two strangers who are not what they appear to be.

Willem’s pioneering academic work on time travel and Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity pose intriguing “what if?” questions – which earned him a chapter in a book on time-travel theoreticians – compelling him to face the implications of his academic work and the consequences of choices in a universe of infinite possibilities. These questions can be posed and answered only in a sci-fi context, which is what attracted Wack to the subject.

The paperback book, nearly 400 pages, is published by Boissevain Books and can be purchased from Amazon USA for less than $12.50 plus shipping. The book can be purchased from Amazon UK for £8.19, with Free Delivery in the UK on orders that exceed £10.