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Freezing Point by Karen Dionne
Review by Mel Jacob
Jove Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780515145366
Date: 30 September 2008 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

Karen Dionne's debut novel Freezing Point takes the reader on a thrilling trek from Los Angeles to Antarctica. Scientist Zo Zelinski battles a pregnancy, diabetes, and the harsh Antarctic environment. Afraid to tell her husband or her other colleagues for fear they will ship her home, she struggles to overcome bouts of morning sickness and complete her research. Then the ice shelf on which she works breaks off. The event disturbs hordes of rats. They have adapted to the cruel environment by hunting in packs. They will attack and devour anything that moves regardless of size.

In Los Angeles at Soldyne Corporation, Ben Maki seeks to bring safe water to a thirsty world. He and his team have developed a process using microwave beams to melt icebergs. Soldy7ne intends to sell the water to highest bidder. News of the dislodged ice shelf provides the raw material if Ben's team can only reach it before the Australians. Weather prevents the Soldyne ship from sailing and the Australians take possession, but the predatory rats drive them off.

The novel alternates between Zo and Ben. A few other characters also have roles to play including Ben's boss the ruthless Donald Gillette and closet environmental activist Ross Roundtree aka the Iceman. In addition, one extreme group plots against Soldyne helped knowingly by Ross and inadvertently by Zo.

Disaster in the form of a virus strikes the Raney Station. Soon most of the personnel take ill, which leaves Zo and Ross to nurse the sick and keep the station operating.

Zo's survival at times strains credibility especially when, despite her pregnancy, she dives into the ocean to rescue an ornithologist bent on suicide. Luck plays a major element. Dionne piles disaster upon disaster to keep the reader turning pages. Fans will eagerly await her next release.

Our Readers Respond

From: Alice Folkart
    Great review - I would buy and read this book. Jacob has a wonderfully light touch, but tells us everything we want to know about the book and everything that we might find interesting.

    Enjoyed the review. Hope I'll enjoy the book (it sounds as if it would make a great movie too).


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