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Mister Doctor Henning by Ronald R. Van Stockum, Jr.
Art by Steven P. Eilers
Ronald R. Van Stockum, Jr. has written a stunning psychological thriller set in his world of fiction science and magical realism. In Mister Doctor Henning, each character has hidden agendas. Are they good or bad? Or just strange? Perhaps you will even find some of yourself in these characters.
And the vehicle of the story? It is a sedan. A Buick Park Avenue, Special Edition. The last of its kind. And spiked with Vandermeerium! It is owned by Mister Doctor Henning, who is a scientist and lawyer. This wondrous automobile will carry him from his rural office to the distant planet you call Venus.
In Van Stockum’s expanded reality, we encounter giant fighting crabs, whose scientific description, habits, and tactics for survival are given in gorgeous detail. And what of the Venusian librarian? Perhaps she is in the grasp of another, more powerful being, the nemesis of all humans.
This novel is educational, as well as entertaining. Van Stockum frequently speaks in asides, going into scientific mode with explanations of chemical processes, biological changes of evolution, and psychology as it appears within the text. He fills the scenes of danger, conspiracy, and chaos with his brand of alliteration, repetition, and internal rhyme. You will be eager to read what happens next.
Welcome to the world of the future, as seen by studying its past.