New book release: ‘The Dot: Book 4’ by Mark Bertrand

‘The Dot: Book 4’ is the new science fiction adventure by Mark Bertrand. Photo: Mark Bertrand, used with permission.

Mark Bertrand is the author of “Starzel,” “Love Reincarnate,” “A Conscious Thing,” and “The Dot.” He is a writer by day and a stock market trader by night. His career path includes working in aerospace and neuroscience. He received a bachelor of science in aeronautical engineering and his master of mathematics from Boston University. To balance his left brain with his right, his MBA is from the University of California at San Diego. Finally, to quench his desire for knowledge, he completed his Ph.D. in mathematics at the University of Southern California. Mark has been a Buddhist for more than forty years, is considered Mahayana, and has also studied Alan Watts’ and Tich Naht Hahn’s writings on Zen. He managed a small abbey in San Diego, California for ten years. Currently, he is a member of the Sangha at the Enlightenment Stupa of Benalmádena, Spain. In his new book “The Dot: Book 4,” two men on different planets discover themselves and their fathers while confronting planetary existential crises of famine, radiation poisoning, and the collapse of society. (Mark Bertrand, 2023)

“The Dot: Book 4” – The Cyborgs, hoping to create a civilization of kindness and love without the destructive effects of anger, harvest a group of scientists, inject them with a serum to alter their DNA, implant a neurolink brain chip, and send them to Ziran, a planet with minimal technology. Eight generations later, Ziran faces extinction. The planet’s binary star system is producing x-ray radiation, which is destroying crops, poisoning the people, and killing their settlement’s chances at a future. In the hopes of saving their planet, the people of Ziran use an ancient ritual, evoking the gods to possess the bodies of the King and Queen to create a child. This child, Zosimos, is the planet’s only hope.

Zosimos matures at an inhuman rate. As he ages, he displays exceptional mental abilities, helping his people solve a range of technological and medical issues. By the time he reaches the age of six, he is ready to take the crown. When Zosimos is exposed to a plant strain with the side-effect of reversing the DNA-altering serum, he feels anger for the first time. With that anger comes the realization that he is superior to those around him. In a fit of rage, he kills his parents and claims the throne, forcing his people to submit to his tyrannical rule.

The promise of a cure for radiation poisoning leads Zosimos to Kelv, the sage. Still filled with rage, Zosimos forces Vallena, who is friends with the sage, to trap Kelv and obtain a DNA sample, hoping to learn why the sage has survived in the wasteland with no protection from radiation. However, Vallena discovers a way to reinstate the DNA-altering serum and cure Zosimos’s rage, and tricks him into taking the cure. The cure works, and Zosimos grows depressed and filled with remorse. He seeks advice from the sage, and through their lessons on love, truth, and alignment between mind and body, Zosimos becomes enlightened. Zosimos, contemplating the solution to his planet’s crisis, and questioning everything he thought he knew, turns to the conscious supercomputer his father hid in Vallena’s home but it is indifferent to human suffering and unwilling to interfere with frail humanity. Using the teachings learned from Kelv, Zosimos convinces the machine to help them. The machine begins to study the human body’s ability to heal itself and in doing so, finds a solution that can save everyone: transcendence but in order for this plan to succeed, the people must trust the former tyrant Zosimos.

Centuries later, the Cyborgs return to monitor their experiment, only to discover a planet vacant of life. There are no humans, no evidence of civilization, no skeletons. The only indications of the now failed experiment are the abandoned neurolinks, and a dead supercomputer.

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