Flood (2008 novel)

Flood (2008 novel)

"Flood" is the work of hard science fiction author Stephen Baxter. It describes a near future world where deep submarine seismic activity leads to seabed fragmentation, and the opening of deep subterranean reservoirs of water, estimated to equal the current mass of the Arctic Ocean in bulk.


The above effects are catastrophic, and exceed current estimates of climate change- related sea level rise. In the opening chapter, four protagonists (Lily, Piers, Helen and Gary) are liberated from a "Christian extremist" Catalonian terrorist bunker in Barcelona after five years of captivity, in 2016. At this point, sea level changes have already submerged Tuvalu, a low lying South Pacific island, whose inhabitants have been evacuated to New Zealand.

However, as a tidal surge hits London and Sydney, scientists become aware that this cannot be explained solely by the consequences of climate change. Oceanographer Thandie uncovers the truth- that the seabed has fragmented, and there is turbulence that can only be attributable to the infusion of vast subterranean reservoirs of hitherto hypothesised but undetected oceanic masses of water.

Over the next three decades, steadily rising waters inundate the whole world, as the protagonists struggle for survival in a vastly altered environment. Lily and her sister Amanda, as well as her children Ben and Kristie experience the flooding and abandonment of London, and refugee resettlement in Dartmoor, but the rising floodwaters make that only a temporary respite, and in 2019, a tsunami obliterates western coastal cities in England, Scotland and Wales. At the same time, New York is demolished by an Atlantic tidal surge, and Washington DC is evacuated. For the next twenty years, Denver becomes the capital of the steadily diminishing United States.

By 2025, much of the eastern United States is underwater, as well as Sacramento on its western coast. Axys Corporation CEO Nathan has a contingency plan for survival of an affluent western minority, which involves evacuation to the mountainous Peruvian Andes. Lily and Piers tag along to the settlement, where Nathan discloses that he is aware of the extent of global inundation, which will not stop until all land on Earth is submerged, apart from the Greenland and eastern Antarctica ice sheets. As the United States is eroded away, a contingent of refugees heads south, and seizes control of the former elite settlement, but "Ark Three", a Queen Mary sized ocean vessel sets sail in 2038. By then, all of Europe and Russia have been submerged.

However, as it heads for Tibet, Nepal's Maoist rulers have devastating news- Tibet is ruled by a Khmer Rouge-like regime that practices human slavery and cannibalism. Ark Three has nowhere to go, given that the floods are now lapping around the Rocky Mountains. Seaborn piracy is rife from those refugee seaborn populations who have taken to scavenging the refuse from the posthumous remains of human civilisation, who ultimately board and destroy Ark Three. By then, over five billion people have perished from the floods.

By 2048, the Andes, Rocky Mountains and elsewhere have been submerged. Tibet's regime is no more, and Australia, North America, South America, Africa, and most of Asia except for the highest mountains in the Himalayas have been flooded. As Lily settles into life as a sea-dwelling survivor, Piers, Nathan and Kirstie die in staggered succession. The novel ends in 2052, as a group of survivors watch the submergence of the peak of the former Mount Everest. Lily has survived, and wonders what the grandchildren of her old hostage comrades from three decades ago will make of post-deluge Earth, now at a new environmental equilibrium, with a vast global storm system that is reminiscent of those on Jupiter and Neptune.

"Hard Science" Basis for Novel

In a short afterword [Stephen Baxter: "Flood": London: Gollancz: 2008: ISBN 9780575080560 pg. 472-473] , Baxter claims to have based his work on a hypothesis related to possible subterranean oceans within the Earth's mantle [A.B. Thompson: "Water in the Earth's Upper Mantle" "Nature" 358: 295-302: 1992] . His other references are cursory, although one ["New Scientist" 10.03.07] refers to the presence of such immense reservoirs approximately below Beijing.

ee also

*Doomsday event
*Greenhouse and Icehouse Earth


External links

* [http://www.stephen-baxter.com Author's website]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем написать курсовую

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Flood (disambiguation) — A flood is an overflow of water onto land.Flood may also refer to:Computing* Network flood, a denial of service attack on a network * Internet Relay Chat flood * Usenet flood * Flooding algorithm, a network routing algorithmFilm and television*… …   Wikipedia

  • Flood (Halo) — infobox VG character name = Flood caption = Halo s Master Chief (left) encounters the Flood on Installation 04. series = Halo Series firstgame = (2001) creator = Robert McLees artist =The Flood are fictional parasitic alien life forms in Bungie s …   Wikipedia

  • Halo Graphic Novel — infobox Book | name = Halo Graphic Novel title orig = translator = image caption = The front cover of the Halo Graphic Novel author = Various cover artist = Phil Hale country = United States language = English series = genre = Science fiction… …   Wikipedia

  • Halo Graphic Novel — Éditeur Marvel Comics Format Roman graphique …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Dates of 2008 — ▪ 2009 January As we meet tonight, our economy is undergoing a period of uncertainty.… At kitchen tables across our country, there is a concern about our economic future. U.S. Pres. George W. Bush, in his final state of the union address, January …   Universalium

  • One, Two, Buckle My Shoe (novel) — One, Two, Buckle My Shoe   …   Wikipedia

  • School Days (visual novel) — School Days Box art of the visual novel スクールデイズ (Sukūru Deizu) Genre Drama …   Wikipedia

  • Devil May Care (novel) — Devil May Care   …   Wikipedia

  • Dictator novel — The dictator Juan Facundo Quiroga The dictator novel (Spanish: novela del dictador) is a genre of Latin American literature that challenges the role of the dictator in Latin American society. The theme of caudillismo the régime of a chari …   Wikipedia

  • Désert (novel) — Desert   Author(s) J.M.G. Le Clézio …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”