Emargo by Michael Tavis
Earth has been embargoed for 5000 years, a fact humans and few galactic citizens are aware. The galactic civilization is billions of years old and has an insatiable desire for new and exciting drugs, which drive exploration by faster than light ships. Unfortunately, Earth, located far from the central galactic centers, is the source of a precursor for a very comfortable, long-lasting, and expensive mattress. The discoverers didn’t want competition nor Earth’s admission to galactic society, so gun platforms were placed in the Kuiper Belt to prevent entry or exit. Only one galactic citizen, Pataxis, lived on the planet to gather the precious resource and prevent Earth science from advancing quickly. John Sum Lang, a 13-year-old graduate student at Cal Tech, was working on his third Ph.D. when a fortuitous accident led to the capture of Pataxis. John’s investigation of galactic technology resulted in improvements in artificial intelligence, instantaneous communications and travel, unlimited human lifetime and memory enhancement. He discovered an ancient derelict starship and traveled to the galactic civilization center to fight for lifting the embargo and Earth’s admission to galactic citizenship. This opened Earth to predation and war.
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I am 81, married, have two children and six grandchildren. I started the book in 2015 but got sidetracked writing some technical papers with the latest appearing in the Journal of the Optical Society of America in 2017. I still work part time and I am writing a follow-up to this book, but it is taking some time.