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The Word On The Street has been renowned for the quality and diversity of its event programming and our next festival promises to offer the best so far. Check out our 2020 schedule!

Saturday, September 19th: Robert J Sawyer – The Oppenheimer Alternative

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

The Oppenheimer Alternative

On the 75th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb, Hugo and Nebula-winning author Robert J. Sawyer takes us back in time to revisit history…with a twist. While J. Robert Oppenheimer and his Manhattan Project team struggle to develop the A-bomb, Edward Teller wants something even more devastating: a bomb based on nuclear fusion—the mechanism that powers the sun.

Teller’s research leads to a terrifying discovery: by the year 2030, the sun will eject its outermost layer, destroying the entire inner solar system—including Earth. As the war ends with the use of fission bombs against Japan, Oppenheimer’s team, plus Albert Einstein and Wernher von Braun, stay together—the greatest scientific geniuses from the last century racing against time to save our future.

Meticulously researched and replete with real-life characters and events, The Oppenheimer Alternative is a breathtaking adventure through both real and alternate history

  • Fantasy/Sci-fi
  • Fiction

Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer has been called “the dean of Canadian science fiction” by The Ottawa Citizen and “Canada’s answer to Michael Crichton” by The Toronto Star. A member of both the Order of Canada and the Order of Ontario, Rob is one of only eight writers in history to win all three of the world’s top awards for best science-fiction novel of the year: the Hugo (which he won in 2003 for Hominids), the Nebula (which he won in 1996 for The Terminal Experiment), and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award (which he won in 2006 for Mindscan). He holds honorary doctorates from both the University of Winnipeg and Laurentian University and was one of the initial inductees into the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. The ABC TV series FlashForward was based on his novel of the same name. Rob’s 24th novel, The Oppenheimer Alternative, published in 2020, explores the moral ramifications of The Manhattan Project. Find him on Facebook, Twitter, or at