A few months (a lifetime) ago, I received a review copy of Karen Dionne’s Freezing Point. Ms. Dionne also sent me a swag chapstick, if you recall? It was excellent chapstick-quite worthy of the book with which it came.
The novel centers around Ben and Zo, two idealists who have moved beyond their most starry-eyed phases. Ben is an executive in a global corporation, selling water for profit. Zo and her husband are researchers in an Antarctic base. A cracking ice shelf, a mysterious disease, and entirely too many rats later, they discover a common cause.
Dionne’s basic premises resonate- the privatization of water resources and the unintended consequences of messing with nature- and give this light thriller a weightier backbone. Her plotting is plausible and only occasionally overwrought, her language use well-considered, and her details convincing enough for me. Basically, if you intend to have a beer near a body of water this summer, read this book while doing so. It’s enjoyable, fast, and illuminates its message without too much preachiness. Plus it’s very helpful if you’ve ever wondered what life would be like if rats tried to eat everyone you knew. Teaser!
P.S. Yes, the book’s cover blurb reads only “Gangbusters!”. In case you are wondering, this refers to a radio show from the 1930s. The opening sequence had a very intense and exciting series of sound effects, and inspired the phrase. Some days I don’t think I’d know anything without the internet.