Backbeat: A Novel of Physics

by J. Frederick Arment
Release date: 2004
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: science fiction

A very human tale of love, betrayal, and quantum uncertainty, "Backbeat: A Novel of Physics" is a traditional orphan's tale told in the language of energy. Thanks to Einstein and his colleagues, this innovative novel has the advantage of a world teeming with virtual particles and collapsing probability waves in which orphans can reconcile their past and change the future. Juxtaposing the anarchic lives of New York runaways with the stoic world of physicists, "Backbeat" tells the story of Romey Argasti, a New York runaway who inherits a $2 billion estate, with one stipulation. He must find a lost piece of music written by his mother, a cellist who died soon after his birth. This heartfelt and compelling story is enough to attract any reader, but Arment puts significance into this inspirational novel with a philosophic undercurrent that is both deep and accessible. Skillfully threaded through the mystery and adventure facing the young protagonist are five epiphanies, or intuitive insights, gained from viewing the human condition in the clear light of physics: possibility, connectivity, uncertainty, probability, and spontaneity. Yet for all its attention to science, "Backbeat" is a traditional, character-driven novel with a surprising climax and fulfilling end. With the 100th anniversary of Einstein's theories upon us (in 2005), this innovative novel can shed light on how the new laws and speculations of physics can affect our motivations, actions, and fates. Don't miss this breakthrough work of fiction!

(updated 2010-09-07)

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