In 2073 the wild tiger is extinct, but the species is flourishing -- genetically redesigned as pocket-sized, exotic pets ... few people care if wild tigers are extinct.
Cass Vandermeer owns a primordial stretch of
, and in this
wildernesses a handful of natural tigers run free, attended by specialists who live alongside them. But the discovery of gene smugglers in the park opens a can of worms with dire consequences. Tasmania
Sonny Moran is a ranger, Alec Finch a copter pilot and Sonny's life partner. They're up against a crew of filmmakers, whom almost everyone wants to strangle for one reason or another, and the smugglers -- how did they get into the Tarkine?
Sonny and Alec must keep the precious genetic samples of real tigers out of the hands of entrepreneurs as vile as the drug lords of an bygone age. The result is sudden violence and action, in the Keegan tradition.
Length: 45,500 words
Rated: M (sex, violence, language)
Publication date: June 2005
Price: $4.99 - ebook
MEL KEEGAN COMMENTS ON TIGER, TIGER
This story was actually inspired by the painting, "The Jungle Book." How could you look at that picture and not catch a glimpse of the story behind it? TIGER, TIGER is the result, and the artist, Jade, is smiling ... the cover's already painted. Job done! ... However, there's an old saying. What goes around comes around. And in this case, the painting inspired the book, which inspired a PORTFOLIO which leaves one blinking. DreamCraft are making the collection of entirely original, digital paintings available as screensavers and calendars, and meanwhile I'll put a feather in my hat for being the inspiration!
The background research for TIGER, TIGER was both a pleasure and one heck of a job. The Tarkine is real place, and people are fighting every day to keep the loggers the hell out of there. Think about this: some element in the government wants to cut down the last pockets of primordial rainforest -- for WOODCHIPS. Now, I understand the 'timber dollar.' I understand planks and boards, the masts of ships, and hand-crafted furniture made of the finest timbers. But what I can't get my head around is turning virgin forest into woodchips. That one's too weird for me.
Most of the research was done on the web; there are some good sites that are well worth a tour-around. In the weeks to come I'll list the best on the links page on-site here. The reality of Tasmania is a place like Middle Earth, regions with names like 'Styx' and 'Valhalla' and 'Cradle Mountain.' It's exotic even before you zip 70 years into the future and look at a world where global warming and overpopulation have changed the face of the planet. Then, when you add the new Tasman tigers to the picture, it gets interesting indeed. I enjoyed writing this one immensely, and I'm more than happy to acknowledge the source of the inspiration.
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