TITLE: “The Platform”
RELEASE DATE: June 30, 2017
AUTHOR: J. Noah Summerfield
CATEGORIES: Science Fiction/ Horror
PAGE COUNT: 256
IMPRINT: Dark Serpent
KEYWORDS: Science Fiction, Post-Apocalyptic, Oil Platform, Oil Rig, Detective, Cannibalism, Ocean
Isolated on an oil platform in a post-apocalyptic future, fear and hunger will push the limits of what it means to be human.
The continents are plagued by poison and fire. And so, on the deep-water oil platform, the Alpine, one of the last remnants of mankind must find a way to survive. Beatrice Plantain, an experienced security official, intends to go about her day and monitor the food rations, but other people on the platform - a grizzled roughneck, a spiritual leader, a feared administrator, a washed up elder, a young hunter and a simple chum-maker - have other plans, as does an explosion that spoils the platform’s food supplies. Facing starvation, the Alpine’s occupants turn against each other. Violent skirmishes lead to the death of a young boy. Who killed the child? And what became of the boy's missing twin? With the Alpine tearing itself apart, Beatrice must uncover who killed the boy. Her investigation will force her to confront the Alpine's terrible past, and what that means for the Alpine's future.
GUEST POST:While I went for one big horror trope in The Platform, that trope doesn’t occupy the narrative. The book is, at its core, a murder mystery. The underlying mystery pans out across the perspectives of different characters. I found it exciting to work with this device during the writing process. This allowed me to play with when information unfolds to the reader and, simultaneously, when that information is revealed to each character. Each character doesn’t necessarily know what the others experienced, which is, of course, a core element of any mystery.
That interplay also made Beatrice an exciting protagonist because, like everyone else on the Alpine, she is so obviously in over her head, tasked with solving a problem that no one is capable of working through. She is at the center of this scenario where all of the important information is not reaching her when it should. She is capable of solving the problems that are in front of her, but the world that she lives in is determined to make it as difficult and convoluted as possible.
On a normal day, she manages security on the platform. That is her day job. Usually, that just means handling the food rations. It makes sense that, in a post-apocalyptic world, there isn’t an organized police force with a designated homicide office. That capability is preoccupied with feeding what is left of the human population.
When the people on the Alpine discover the murder, the platform’s Administrator decides that Beatrice is best equipped to solve the case, even though she is lacks that specific training. No one on the platform does. So she follows in the footsteps of the great line of literary detectives – Sam Spade, Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot, Harry Dresden, and so on.
What sets her apart is that she has to struggle with a world that suffers from a severe loss of information and skills. It is the brain drain. We see this again when Beatrice asks the Good Doctor, obviously a capable and intelligent woman, to perform an autopsy. It doesn’t even occur to Beatrice that, after the apocalypse, the Good Doctor may have never performed an autopsy before. What part of the Doctor’s experience and training would equip her to perform such a task? How can we, as a society, take these types of skills for granted? That is a common enough trend in post-apocalyptic literature. The Platform brings my two cents to the subject.
The Platform is J. Noah Summerfield’s first novel. His non-fiction writing has appeared through various scholarly journals, including Quinnipiac Probate Law Journal, New York Law School Law Review, Creighton Law Review, Rocky Mountain Communication Review, Transnational Dispute Management and the NYSBA Entertainment Art and Sports Law Journal. He is a recipient of the Ernst C. Stiefel award from New York Law School and the Phil Cowan BMI award from the Entertainment Art and Sports Law Section of the New York State Bar Association. He lives in Florida with Kelvin, the dog. Now, on to the next novel… perhaps something involving pirates…
AUTHOR LINKS:AMAZON US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B074912PXZ
AMAZON UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B074912PXZ
AMAZON CA: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B074912PXZ
BARNES & NOBLE: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-platform-jason-n-summerfield/1126885230?ean=9781543017311
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