There has always been a standoff between the dogmas of religion and the discoveries of science, especially in the genre of science fiction. One doesn’t often find a science fiction novel written by an openly Christian believer. In Reternity, Neal Wooten has recently come up with a well-written and interesting science fiction novel that does exactly that. He has impressive credentials, too. A successful journalist, blogger, illustrator of books, and author, Wooten is a frequent contributor to online magazine The Indie Times. He has written three books. This one, Reternity, is his first work of science fiction.
His protagonist, 19-year old Johnny Maxwell, “Max,” is a young student entering college, and he has been well prepared in Christian thinking by his father, who is a minister. Both his parents are apprehensive about him now that he is suddenly thrown to the world and its many temptations.
Max enrolls in a bible study program at Cedarbluff University and enters into many interesting debates with fellow classmates about different understandings of Christianity. The following year, he signs up for a science class, and the science professor assigns the class an “impossible project.” He gives each student who volunteers a lead ball and tells them to figure out a way to make the lead ball become magnetic. Intrigued with this project, Max puts his heart and soul into it. On the internet, he discovers that lead is not magnetic because it does not have electron spin.
Max then builds several devices he thinks might induce electron spin into the lead ball through a flow of electrical energy. After several false starts, he finally sees results. He invites his professor to his home to see the results, and the professor is astounded! The lead ball didn’t become magnetic–it simply disappeared. From here on, Reternity takes several surprising turns, as Max and the professor gradually come to understand what has happened to the lead ball and the potential value this discovery might have to science. Very enthused, they continue experimenting toward the ultimate test of the discovery.
In the final chapters, Wooten does a masterful job tying religion and science together and takes the reader on an adventuresome journey the reader will not soon forget.