Book - The Last Storm

We're honoured to be a stop on Titan Books Tour for the latest climate thriller novel by Tim Lebbon, The Last Storm. Here Tim writes about the need to adapt to survive a changing climate ...

When I was a kid I lived in the countryside on a farm, and that's where I fell in love with nature. We moved to a city for a while, but then I got married and my wife and I have lived in a nice little village, surrounded by beautiful countryside, for the past twenty-five years.

Even in that time, we've noticed the change. Not so many insects. Not so many garden birds, or butterflies. Hardly see any snails anymore. And some winters we don't see any snow at all.

I've always written about nature, from my very first mass market novel The Nature of Balance, right up to my new novel The Last Storm. It's a big part of my life, and always forms a solid backdrop to my writing. Sometimes it's more than just a setting. Sometimes it's a character in its own right. As I've grown older my understanding of what we've done to our planet - and the changes those actions have caused and continue to cause now - has become deeper, as has my sadness and anger.

That's why I write climate thriller fiction. Not every novel has it as a core theme or background, but it's always there somewhere. I write about what I know, and more than that, as a horror writer I write about what scares me.

And what's happening to our climate scares me.

I'm certainly no scientist, but with my daughter just completing a Masters Degree in Climate Change I do get to read some of her research. It's frightening, and writing about it is just a natural progression.

The Last Storm is probably the most involved novel about climate change I've written. My previous novel Eden was based in a similar world (maybe even the same world ... who knows?), but its main setting was a huge area that had been given back to nature. As such the landscape was beautiful, thriving, untouched.

The Last Storm is set in the very heart of a world changed by human actions. It's a road novel, a chase novel, a family drama, all set against the backdrop of a North America vastly changed––and still being changed–– by global warming and climate change. That formed such a rounded, terrifying backdrop that I believe it feeds through every aspect of the novel, from the locations where the action takes place, to how the characters act and interact.

Every character in The Last Storm is moulded by their surroundings. It features a family of reluctant Rainmakers, whose arcane ability to bring down water also brings other, more deadly things, and who suffer every time they use their gift (or is it a curse?). Even those around them are formed from the dust and heat of the desert, their lives steered and dictated by their surroundings.

Even so, I see hope in the novel, in the way these characters adapt. After all, that's what we in the real world have to do. Adapt, and survive.

Thanks very much to Tim Lebbon and Titan Books for this thought provoking exclusive article. Be sure to visit all the other stops on this week's tour too.

About The Last Storm

With global warming out of control, large swathes of North America have been struck by famine and drought and are now known as the Desert. A young woman sets out across this dry, hostile landscape, gradually building an arcane apparatus she believes will bring rain to the parched earth. A gripping, terrifying road trip across a scorched land from the author of Netflix’s The Silence. This action-packed and thought-provoking eco-nightmare will appeal to fans of Benjamin Percy, Christopher Golden and Josh Malerman.

Images - Titan Books

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