Next year. Sea levels begin to rise. The change is far more rapid than any climate change predictions; metres a year. Within two years London, only 15 metres above the sea, is drowned. New York follows, the Pope gives his last adress from the Vatican, Mecca disappears beneaths the waves. Where is all the water coming from? Scientists estimate that the earth was formed with seas 30 times in volume their current levels. Most of that water was burnt off by the sun but some was locked in the earth's mantle. For the tip of Everest to disappear beneath the waters would require the seas to triple their volume. That amount of water is still much less than 1% of the earth's volume. And somehow it is being released. The world is drowning. The biblical flood has returned. And the rate of increase is building all the time. Mankind is on the run, heading for high ground. Nuclear submarines prowl through clouds of corpses rising from drowned cities, populations are decimated and finally the dreadful truth is known. Before 50 years have passed there will be nowhere left to run.
FLOOD tells the story of mankind's final years on earth. The stories of a small group of people caught up in the struggle to survive are woven into a tale of unimaginable global disaster. And the hope offered for a unlucky few by a second great ark ...
Shortlisted for BSFA Best Novel 2009
"Baxter's vision of a drowning earth is compelling." (Lisa Tuttle THE TIMES )
"A central narrative that's as relentless as a Panzer sweeping across lowland France in 1940. Amid huge events, the author still finds time for the intimate, the human-sized." (Jonathan Wright SFX )
'FLOOD has an increasing sense of gravitas, and even, by the end, a genuine weight of mourning. It's actually a novel that gains in power as it goes along, and as it becomes increasingly apparent that no miracle technofixes are in sight. A largely old fashioned disaster tale presented with spectacle and efficient pacing' (LOCUS )
"Covering events from the UK to the US, from Australia to Tibet, this is a comprehensive disaster novel that has a very global feel. Perhaps mostly this book is an homage to human survivability - we endure should be our motto. [It] deserves to sit high on the blockbuster shelves." (SFFWORLD )
"Baxter never loses sight in the bigger picture of the effect of the flood on the lives of individuals, societies and nations. The cast might be extensive, but the lives of the major players are skilfully interwoven with the plight of the planet. The sequel, Ark, will continue this enthralling story." (Eric Brown GUARDIAN )
Stephen Baxter is the pre-eminent SF writer of his generation. Published around the world he has also won major awards in the UK, US, Germany, and Japan. Born in 1957 he has degrees from Cambridge and Southampton. He lives in Northumberland with his wife.