By Trevor Hoyle
Jo Fletcher Books, paperback, £10.99
Environmental issues come with a vengeance in this lengthy, but dramatic novel by Lancashire author Trevor Hoyle.
The one-time actor and advertising copywriter now writes full time and this is a horrifying vision of what could happen if we continue to ignore nature’s warning shots.
Gavin Chase, from Bolton, is researching in the Antarctic when he rescues a near-dead Russian scientist. All he can get from the victim of the frozen wasteland is a complicated equation which indicates that the chemical interaction between carbon dioxide and seawater is reducing the oxygen in the atmosphere alarmingly.
Scientists who are experts in one form or another of global warming and climatic change are murdered as superpowers struggle to gain supremacy, and a right to the last of the oxygen for the chosen few.
Whether this is a prophetic view of what is happening, could happen, or wild imaginings, is hardly the point as the novel works its way to a gripping conclusion.
As Gavin gobbles up the air miles to alert the world to the traumatic eventualities promised, the action continues to grip the reader.
At 722 pages – with another 30-page ‘afterword’ – this is long, the scientific stuff is often complicated, but neither gets in the way of a real thriller. The only bits I could have done without are the gratuitous sex and violence which is unnecessary and all too common in writings these days.