Tag Archives: Tipping Point thriller

Tipping Point – Free on Kindle!

25 Jan

TIPPING POINT Eco-Action thriller will be free to download on the Kindle between 25th and 26th May 2012. A big thank you to the 4250 people who grabbed themselves a free copy during the last KDP Select promotion. I was amazed at the number who took the opportunity. I hope you all enjoy the book! Keep an eye out for more free offers soon, including new book, IMPACT POINT. If you enjoyed it, please leave an Amazon review…they all help!

Amazon UK                             Amazon USA

                    

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Spiders and Conkers!

22 Sep

Whilst writing my next Robert Spire thriller Impact Point, I noticed a large fluffy spider run across the lounge floor. I usually catch them and put them out, but this was a big critter, and worse, it disappeared into the shadows!

 With Northern Hemisphere Autumn now in full swing, anyone afraid of our hairy eight-legged friends might be starting to get a little bit nervous. Yes, spiders in all shapes and sizes will be invading our homes through open windows, bath plugs cracks and crevices. In the UK alone there are some 600 different species of spider. Even though our eight legged friends are harmless (Unless you happen to live in the USA, Australia or the Jungle) they are great for getting rid of insects and flies, but it doesn’t stop people being afraid of them.

 So, do conkers drive them bonkers? Well my dad swears by it! According to folklore, leaving strategically placed conkers around the house, on window sills, corners of the room and other places where you spot the creepy crawlies will scare the living daylights out of them, but is there any scientific basis for this?

 The Royal Society of Chemistry has carried out some experiments to try and find the answers. The most likely explanation is that the conkers may contain some kind of chemical repellent. Spiders it seems have conkerphopia!

 However, a junior school in Cornwall carried out a simple experiment which appears to dispel the spider-conker theory, so those strategically placed conkers may be a total waste of time, just eat them instead.

 So, if you have arachnophobia, place your conkers around the house, get the Kindle out, sit back, make yourself your favourite drink and relax on the sofa with a good book – an eco-adventure thriller like TIPPING POINT would be a good start.

 If you’ve purchased the paperback version and the conkers don’t do their job, you can always whack the hairy critter with it during a chapter break! Enjoy!

Tipping Point – Facts Behind The Fiction.

23 Aug

Without giving away too many book spoilers, I thought I’d write a brief blog for anyone who may be wondering if there is any truth behind the themes in my action-adventure thrillerTIPPING POINT.

The Tipping Point of the title refers to the point at which an irreversible melting of the Arctic’s ice pack occurs. Other themes explored in the novel are geoengineering, peak oil, the ocean thermohaline circulation and the melting of Greenland’s ice sheet! Whilst Robert Spire is left to solve the deaths of the climatologists in the book, we look at whether these themes have any basis in science fact. Let’s have a look in more detail.

The Arctic

Tipping Point explores the underlying theme that the Arctic is melting from global warming. Each year the ice pack covering the Arctic melts and retreats during the summer and freezes over again in the winter, with its maximum melt each year in September. Data from the National Snow and Ice Data Centre reveals that Arctic ice cover is on a downward trend. 2007 was the lowest recorded level, but 2011 looks likely to set a new record low. Scientists predict the Arctic may be ice free during the summer between 2013 and 2019, a startling and worrying fact. This would mean the opening of the fabled Northwest Passage – a route between the Atlantic and the Pacific – and give more opportunities for countries and companies to plunder the riches the Arctic has to offer.

Geoengineering

In the book, French climatologist Francois Trimaud has developed a specialised form of iron sulphate to fertilise the Arctic Ocean, in order to slow down and reverse the Arctic’s melting ice by increasing Arctic albedo (reflectivity) levels. The experimental substance contains a whitening pigment called Blankoplankton.
Scientists are indeed looking at ways to geoengineer the Earth’s climate to solve, or reduce the effects of global warming. Iron fertilisation of the oceans is one method.

Peak Oil

A theme explored in Tipping Point is the possibility that the World’s oil resources are running out, that supplies have reached a peak and are now on a downward curve. This theory was proposed by M King Hubbert, and he successfully predicted that the USA would reach its peak oil production in the early 1970s. Has this now happened with Saudi Arabia’s oil supplies?

Ocean Thermohaline Circulation

In Tipping Point, the book opens with UK climatologist Dr Dale Stanton’s untimely death, preventing him delivering a talk on the Atlantic Ocean’s thermohaline circulation. The OTC or great ocean conveyor as it is known, is an important ocean current which brings warm water up from the Equator to the east coast of the USA and Europe in the form of the North Atlantic Drift and Gulf Stream. The film ‘The Day After Tomorrow’ is based on the premise of the current suddenly failing, heralding in a new ice-age.
The UKs RAPID-WATCH project measures the rate or flow of the ocean current to assess whether its strength is changing. This project runs until 2014.

During a period called the Younger Dryas, a significant shutdown of the current is thought to have caused a rapid decline from relatively warmer conditions back to ice-age conditions in a blink of an eye in climactic terms. A huge influx of fresh water from Lake Agassiz is thought to have been the possible cause. The fresh water flowing into the Atlantic would have disrupted the ocean flow by interfering with its thermohaline conveyor system. 
Scientists are concerned that an increase in fresh water flowing into the Atlantic from Greenland’s melting ice sheets could once again disrupt the Thermo (heat) and haline (salt) engine that drives this essential current. 

Greenland Melting?

A back story in Tipping Point is the fact that a huge glacier on Greenland is melting, which causes isotactic adjustment of the Greenland continent underneath. Research does indeed show that Greenland glacier ice-melt is accelerating.

These are the facts. Now if you fancy a thrilling action-adventure, why don’t YOU read TIPPING POINT?