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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Fifty Degrees Below, the sequel to Kim Stanley Robinson's Forty Signs of Rain, continues the author's trilogy of cautionary novels chronicling the effects of global warming -- and what could happen if humanity continues to ignore numerous signs of impending environmental collapse.
With the polar ice caps melting, fresh water is pouring into the Atlantic Ocean and stalling the Gulf Stream, and the world's coastal regions are dealing with catastrophic floods. Now, with winter setting in, the environmental indicators of an approaching global disaster are becoming more pronounced. When unbearably cold temperatures descend on the eastern United States and western Europe -- and tens of thousands of people die from exposure and/or starvation -- the scientific community comes together in a desperate attempt to stop what appears to be the beginning of a new ice age. But no one has ever tried to terraform the Earth before: Is this "planetary engineering" too little, too late?
A dramatic increase in atmospheric carbon, carbon dioxide, and methane; the continuing extinction of countless species; glaciers melting; oceans warming, rising sea levels, and coastal flooding. Science fiction or science fact? Robinson's Fifty Degrees Below is both a compelling eco-thriller and a passionate appeal to world leaders for immediate action. Call it what you will -- cautionary tale, apocalyptic thriller, thinly veiled political statement -- this book is essential reading for anyone concerned with the future of humankind. The title is appropriate on so many levels: Robinson's speculation will chill readers to the bone. Paul Goat Allen