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Fifty Degrees Below
Authors:
Genre: Fantasy , Politics , Science Fiction , Thriller
Series: Book 2.0 in the Science in the Capital series
Ratings: ★★★☆☆
Publisher: Bantam
Pub Year:
ISBN: 9780553585810
   
List Price: 0.00
Download: EPUB MOBI


Summary

Bestselling, award-winning, author Kim Stanley Robinson continues his groundbreaking trilogy of eco-thrillers–and propels us deeper into the awesome whirlwind of climatic change. Set in our nation’s capital, here is a chillingly realistic tale of people caught in the collision of science, technology, and the consequences of global warming–which could trigger another phenomenon: abrupt climate change, resulting in temperatures...

When the storm got bad, scientist Frank Vanderwal was at work, formalizing his return to the National Science Foundation for another year. He’d left the building just in time to help sandbag at Arlington Cemetery. Now that the torrent was over, large chunks of San Diego had eroded into the sea, and D.C. was underwater.

Shallow lakes occupied the most famous parts of the city. Reagan Airport was awash and the Potomac had spilled beyond its banks. Rescue boats dotted the saturated cityscape. Everything Frank and his colleagues in the halls of science and politics feared had culminated in this massive disaster. And now the world looked to them to fix it.

Whatever Frank can do, now that he is homeless, he’ll have to do from his car. He’s not averse to sleeping outdoors. Years of research have made him hyperaware of his status as just another primate. That plus his encounter with a Tibetan Buddhist has left him resolved to live a more authentic life.

Hopefully, this will prepare him for whatever is to come....

For even as D.C. bails out from the flood, a more extreme climate change looms. With the melting of the polar ice caps shutting down the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, another Ice Age could be imminent. The last time it happened, eleven thousand years ago, it took just three years to start.

Once again Kim Stanley Robinson uses his remarkable vision, trademark wry wit, and extraordinary insight into the complexity between man and nature to take us to the brink of disaster–and slightly beyond.

From the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Earth continues its relentless plunge toward environmental collapse in Robinson's well-done if intensely didactic follow-up to Forty Signs of Rain (2004). As a result of global warming, the Gulf Stream has stalled, and when winter comes, impossibly frigid temperatures hit the Eastern Seaboard and Western Europe. As people starve, multinational corporations explore ways of making a profit from the disaster. When Antarctica's ice shelves collapse, low-lying island nations quite literally slip beneath the rising waters. In Washington, D.C., clear-sighted scientists must overcome government inertia and stupidity to put into effect policies that may begin to salvage the situation. An enormous fleet of ships is dispatched to the North Atlantic to dump millions of tons of salt into the ocean in the hope of restarting the Gulf Stream. This ecological disaster tale is guaranteed to anger political and economic conservatives of every stripe, but it provides perhaps the most realistic portrayal ever created of the environmental changes that are already occurring on our planet. It should be required reading for anyone concerned about our world's future.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School–Picking up where Forty Signs of Rain (Bantam, 2004) leaves off, this second book in a planned trilogy finds Earth about to experience the most intense winter on record. Governments worldwide blithely go about their routines in spite of the monumental recent flooding in Washington, DC, and other areas around the globe. When the record-setting cold sets in, people begin freezing to death and starving due to crop failures. Large corporations and world governments use the crisis to attempt to rig elections and plan other agendas to tighten their hold on the public. Meanwhile scientists, especially those at the National Science Foundation, frantically search for a way to shift the weather patterns. The answer seems to be to jump-start the Gulf Stream to get it flowing again; the world watches as millions of tons of salt pour from ships into the ocean in this attempt. While the major plot of ecological chaos plays out, the subplots show how the effects of the weather changes, ecological turmoil, and governmental and big business assaults affect the various characters as they try to survive. This well-researched and expertly written novel about a future that might be coming true all too soon will hopefully serve as a wake-up call about Earths current serious situation.–Pam Johnson, Fairfax County Public Library, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.