London Bookstore Sets 'Cli-Fi' Table For Climate Books

Cli-FiDuring the sweltering British summer of 2013, Foyles bookstore in London did something that was a long time coming: It set up a dedicated ”cli-fi” table with a simple yet eye-catching sign promoting fiction and non-fiction books with climate themes.

Among the books seen on the table in the photograph to the right above are Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” and James Lovelock’s “The Revenge of Gaia” as well as Stephen Emmott’s current bestseller “10 Billion” sitting alongside such dystopic scenarios as J.G. Ballard’s “The Drowned World,” John Christopher’s “The Death of Grass,” Joe Dunthorne’s “Wild Abandon” and Liz Jensen’s “The Rapture.”

Most of the books on the table are also available as e-books as well, according to Steve Matthews, a Foyles bookshop employee who was working the early morning shift last Sunday and graciously snapped the photo—exclusively for TeleRead—with his iPhone.

The ‘cli-fi’ sign in-store may be the first of its kind anywhere in the now-warming world, and follows extensive media coverage of the emerging cli-fi genre in TeleRead, The Guardian, the Financial Times, and The New Yorker.

Other cli-fi novels on the table included Barbara Kingsolver’s”Flight Behavior” and and Ian McEwan’s “Solar.” Will other bookstores and book-selling websites around the world follow Foyles’ example and set up similar cli-fi sites at bookstores in New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Sydney, Melbourne, Wellington and Paris? Is this a trend or just a one-off photo opp in the UK?

6 Comments on London Bookstore Sets 'Cli-Fi' Table For Climate Books

  1. Might be just a coincidence, or what New Agers call a harmonic convergence, but the older man standing behind the sign wearing a greenish sweater, white shirt collar, book shoulder bag strap over right shoulder, doesn’t he look a lot like the famous British climate expert James Lovelock, author fo the book “Revenge of Gaiai” which is sitting on the table? Compare photos. Google his name to see his face. Lovelock is 94, so maybe not him but a good lookalike?

  2. Might be just a coincidence, or what New Agers call a harmonic convergence, but the older man standing behind the sign wearing a greenish sweater, white shirt collar, book shoulder bag strap over right shoulder, doesn’t he look a lot like the famous British climate expert James Lovelock, author fo the book “Revenge of Gaiai” which is sitting on the table? Compare photos.

  3. Funny. Since the “fi” in “scifi” means “fiction, Foyles is perhaps hinting that there’s a lot of fiction in this climate hysteria. There is certainly enough to turn scifi thriller writer Michael Crichton, one of whose books in in the picture, into a climate skeptic.

    Keep in mind that there’s never been a major science-based political hysteria that’s proved true. Race suicide was a bust, as was the Yellow Peril and eugenics. In the thirties, democracy and capitalism were thought to be failures and command economics were thought to be the only answer.

    Perhaps thanks to calm Eisenhower, the fifties were quiet, but the sixties saw the Population Bomb hysteria with worldwide famines to come by the late 1970s. Instead, today’s world has a serious problem with obesity.

    The seventies saw scares about resource depletion and a New Ice, the latter due to about the same period of cooling that triggered the more recent Global Warming hysteria. Instead, we got prosperity spreading, particularly across Asia and a warming trend. that triggered yet another hysteria.

    And because world temperatures have been essentially flat for 16 years, the global warming hysteria has morphed into something called climate change. If what you mean by climate is the trends over the last decade or so, then climate is always changing. Whatever happens to the weather can be blamed on it. Perpetual hysteria. Some will love that. The rest of us will wish they go off to some mountain top and leave us alone.

    About the only pattern is that these scientific doomsayers have always been wrong. And if that’s true this time, the twenty-first century should see either marvelous climate trends akin to the Medieval Optimum when Greenland was green or some unpleasant cooling thanks to a less-active sun that we can do nothing about.

  4. Michael W. Perry, there’s no way I’m going to get into this whole thing with you, but I’ll just point out that you said, “world temperatures have been essentially flat for 16 years,” and respond by saying that if you make unsubstantiated claims just to make your argument sound good, people might call you on those.

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs_v3/

    The real data looks somewhat flat for about eight years. What’s your source for sixteen?

  5. @MichaelPerry above, YES, Michel Chricton’s “State of Fear” is prominently displayed on the cli fi table, and he was very skepticl of global warming theories and the whole climate change thing, true. That’s why the photo is TELLING. And just to be clear, Mr Perry, cli fi is open to all climate writers, warmists, skeptics, activists, even climate denialists. Just like sci fi has lots of POVs, and the more the merrier, the same for cli fi, the more POV the merrier. Thanks for comments, sir.

  6. …the older man standing
    behind the sign wearing a greenish sweater, white shirt collar, book
    shoulder bag strap over right shoulder, doesn’t he look a lot like the
    famous British climate expert James Lovelock, author fo the book
    “Revenge of Gaiai”

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