Note: This is the second 'character blog' for Doctor Dave Hennings, one of the minor characters in Exchange.Â In case you missed the first transcript,Â Exchange is a science fiction novel that will be published in June 2010.Â Bear Country is the name of the alternate dimension the town of Rockport is transported into at the beginning of the novel. Â These blogs are designed to tell fans of the novel a little more about Bear Country, the alternate dimension without creating spoilers for Exchange, the novel.
Fair warning: Doctor Dave is a primatologist (studies monkeys) and he's been known to tell you far more than most of you want to know about the animals of Bear Country, among other things.
Bill Symkin (referred to as Bill for the rest of the transcript): Hi.Â This is Bill 'Face Made For Radio' Symkin, here once again on radio station WGNB of Rockport Illinois.Â This is the third day of the Exchange.Â Rockport has been in Bear Country a little over 52 hours now.Â Cold beers and warm showers are both getting scarce.Â I haven't seen any sabertooth tigers yet, but I could swear I saw one of those little green monkeys last night when I was walking home from the bar.Â Of course it was dancing with a mastodon in a tutu, so I may have just had one beer too many.Â I did wake up with a tutu in the bedroom floor, so I'm not entirely clear on what did happen toward the end of last night.
In any case, we've got Doctor Dave Hennings from Northwestern University with us again to talk to you aboutÂ Bear Country.Â Thanks again for stopping by Doctor Dave.
Dr. Hennings (referred to as Dr. Dave for the rest of the transcript): Thanks Bill.
Bill: Now I know a lot of people have gotten what little information they know about Bear Country from the wildly popular Bear Country series of books, movies, comic books, and of course the TV shows.Â What do you think of the science in all of those mass media things about Exchanges and Bear Country?
Dr. Dave: Well, the original Bear Country book series is pretty accurate.Â I really am as dashing and knowledgeable as I appear in those stories.
Bill: Umm.Â You have a walk-on role at the beginning of the book.Â That's it.
Dr Dave: That's true.Â The first movie expands my character into kind of the hero of the book--the intrepid primatologist with the whip and the hat and the two-day growth of beard who fights Nazis and explores ancient ruins and lost cities.
Bill: Right.Â But the real you--the one in the books--looks sort of like a middle-aged Caucasion Steve Erkle, and there are no Nazis or ancient ruins or lost cities in Bear Country, right?
Dr Dave: True, well except for the Steve Erkle part.Â Actually, I can't say sure about the lost cities or the ancient ruins.Â Bear Country is a big place.Â We haven't found any yet, but who knows?Â Well, actually, with no people over here, yeah there probably aren't ruins or lost cities.Â Kind of a pity.
Bill: But definitely no Nazis.
Dr.Â Dave: Probably not.
Bill: So the books are pretty accurate and the movies and TV show are--
Dr Dave: Let's just say they play with the concept a little.
Bill: So what happened to all of those people in that city in Nigeria?
Dr. Dave: Even if I knew I couldn't tell you.
Dr Dave: No. It would be a spoiler.Â We haven't gotten that far in the book yet.
Bill: Oh, that's right.Â I suppose we can't talk about what happened down in South America either.
Dr. Dave: Nope.
Bill: What about this Sam Kittle?Â Is he going to play a major role in the book?
Dr Dave: Again with the spoiler thing.Â We haven't gotten there yet.Â I can tell you that he remembers Sharon, knows she's in Bear Country, and has plans for her.
Bill: Wait a second.Â Isn't that a spoiler?
Dr. Dave: No.Â That's a teaser.
Bill: Oh okay.Â Say, we're about out of time.Â Before you go do you have any parting thoughts for our readers?
Dr Dave: Sure.Â If you want to see a wonderful series of books on your shelves, and you want them to be made into a crappy movie, a crappier TV-series, and you want to see Leo West action figures, then look for the novel when it comes out on June 6, 2010.
Bill: You didn't mention the Dr Dave bobbleheads.
Dr. Dave: No, I didn't.
Bill: Now how do you get to the chapter?
Dr Dave: Click on the chapters below.Â If you haven't read chapter 1, you might want to try that one first, but Chapter 2 is the only one where your vote counts in this round.Â Oh, and remember that any Gather points the author gets this round go to buying gift cards for Habitat For Humanity for helping rebuild New Orleans, so you are contributing to a worthy cause.
Bill: Thanks for your time.Â Here are the links to those chapters: