Annihilation - Tor/Forge Blog



Our Favorite Badass Female Scientists in SFF

Ready to celebrate some of our favorite, most BADASS women in the STEM field?! Check out our round-up of kick-ass female scientists in sci-fi here!

By Julia Bergen

When I was a little girl, books and movies were filled with the “lady scientist” trope. She never seemed to do much actual science but seemed more focused on supporting the male characters. Think Sigourney Weaver’s play on this character type in Galaxy Quest. Now that I’m raising a daughter of my own, I’m so excited that culture has moved away from this outdated idea of what women in STEM can be, and that she’ll have so many awesome scientists of all genders to read about and root for!

image-alt5Evelyn Caldwell from The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey

Evelyn Caldwell’s personal life might be messy (that’s one word for it when your husband cheats on you…with your clone…and gets her pregnant) but her career is truly aspirational. She’s an award-winning geneticist at the top of her game. Her husband works in the field as well, but it’s clear that she has never played second fiddle to him.

image-alt4Kira Navárez from To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini

Kira Navárez is a talented xenobiologist, who travels the stars conducting her research surveys. Basically, the dream job. Until she finds an artifact that pulls her into galactic war. But hey, science isn’t always easy. Kira’s curiosity pulls her into a grand adventure across the galaxy which might not be the most pleasant for her, but is fascinating to read about.

image-alt3Jack from The Wayward Children series by Seanan McGuire

Both Jack and her more murderous twin Jill are such fascinating characters, the type that only Seanan McGuire can conjure. Growing up, Jack’s parents dress her in frilly dresses and never let her play sports or do anything traditionally masculine. They don’t even let anyone call her Jack, instead insisting she always be called Jacqueline. It isn’t until Jack and Jill venture into the magical world of the Moors that they’re able to become their full selves. For Jill, that means terrorizing villagers and hanging out with a vampire, but for Jack, she’s finally able to embrace her love of science, while studying under Dr. Bleak in his windmill laboratory.

image-alt-2Ye Wenjie from The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu

Liu’s entire trilogy is filled with incredible female scientists. I picked Ye Wenjie for this article not just because she’s a brilliant astrophysicist, but because she’s such a morally complex character. After seeing her father executed she decides Earth is beyond saving itself, and makes way for the alien Trisolarans to invade. She also kinda starts a cult. Yet through it all, the reader is always able to understand her motivations and see that her goal was always to help humanity. Women who are awesome at science and also deal with difficult ethical questions? Yes, please!

image-alt1The narrator from Annihilation, by Jeff VanderMeer

Annihilation actually contains not just one, but four badass women who are experts in their fields. The narrator is the biologist of the group tasked with mapping the mysterious “Area X,” a vast plot of land teaming with bizarre organisms. Every mission beforehand has ended…poorly, but that doesn’t stop these women from using their knowledge and expertise to explore the unknown and attempt to bring order to the chaos of “Area X.”

image-altNaomi Nagata, from The Expanse series by James S. A. Corey

Naomi Nagata, chief engineer of the Rocinante, is a genius when it comes to spaceships. Frequently the Rocinante and its crew would be killed in a variety of nasty ways if it wasn’t for her. She’s strong as hell, but Corey expertly avoids making her a Strong Female Character™ by giving her a depth and humanity that makes her such an amazing character.

Tor Books Announces Programming for San Diego Comic-Con 2014

Tor Books is heading to San Diego Comic-Con!

Image Place holder  of - 78 Once again Tor (Booth# 2707) continues our wildly popular *in-booth signings and giveaways, offering you a chance to meet your favorite authors up close and personal and pick up free books. We’ve got a great line up including appearances by: John ScalziGreg van EekhoutTobias Buckell, and Tor Teen debut author Ben Tripp.


Thursday, July 24th

  • 12:00 – 1:00am Panel: Fairy Tale Remix, Room 32AB
    Tor Teen author Ben Tripp (The Accidental Highwayman) joins Marissa Meyer (The Lunar Chronicles) and others that will give insight to the fairy tales of old, and new!
  • 1:30pm – 2:30 pm Signing to follow in the autographing area, Table AA09
  • 1:30pm – Author Reading Spotlight – John Scalzi, Science Fiction Author Cosplay, Horton Grand Theater, 444 4th Ave, between Island and J Street.
    John Scalzi reads from his forthcoming near-future thriller, Lock In, answers audience questions and maybe even serenades them on the ukulele!
  • 3:00pm – 4:00pm Panel: When Magic & Myth Meet Main Street, Room 25ABC
    When stories mix modern cities like Paris, LA, New York with magic, myth and demon spawn they are collectively known as Urban Fantasy, and many of today’s popular authors are adding their otherworldly ingredients to the melting pots of modern (and not-so-modern) society. Join some of today’s top urban fantasy authors, including Greg van Eekhout (California Bones), Jim Butcher, Seanan McGuire and others as they discuss why something old with something new equals gold.
  • 4:30pm – 5:30pm Signing to follow in the autographing area, Table AA09

Friday, July 25th

  • 1:00pm – 2:00pm Panel: 101 Ways to Kill a Man, Room 32AB
    Coming up with creative ways to commit mayhem and murder is the lifeblood of these talented thriller authors. A fatal chimera virus; hybridized bioengineered parasites; murderous microchips; lethal electric stimuli; deathstrike via satellite targeting. How many ways can you kill someone? Join top thriller authors Tobias Buckell (Hurricane Fever)Greg Hurwitz (Don’t Look Back) and others as they discuss the art of delivering deadly thrills. But don’t worry too much. A little light reading never killed anyone.
  • 2:30pm – 3:30pm Signing to follow in the autographing area, Table AA09

Saturday, July 26th

  • 12:00pm Tor Booth (#2707) Signing: Hurricane Fever – Tobias Buckell
  • 2:30pm – 3:30pm Panel: The Art of Fear, Room 8
    Horror novels have been keeping us at night for years. From puppets that come to life, to creepy-crawly worm, haunted towns, demons out for blood, killer wolves, possible possessions, to the apocalypse, these authors give you goosebumps while you read. Glen Hirschberg (Motherless Child), moderates this panel featuring, Mira Grant and others as they discuss their novels, the writing process, and why you keep the light on while you read.
  • 4:00pm – 5:00pm Signing to follow in the autographing area, Table AA09

Make sure to follow @TorBooks on Twitter for up to date information and last minute events!

All Tor Booth signings are on a first come first serve basis and while supplies lasts. Limit one book per person.

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