Jamie Poole: Science/Fiction
In reading today's headlines, there are events that correlate with the Jamie Poole series. When writing fiction, and not specifically historical fiction in this case, I have seen life imitate art while art imitates life. Jamie Poole includes a cast of historical figures who pass through the pages. I could list off quite a few: Gandhi, Percival Lowell, and military heroes from World War I and II, to name a few. Most recently I added Heinrich Himmler to a storyline. When writing about World War II as I did in Sisterhood of the Sword, that was unavoidable considering its plot and the correlation of Nazi spies hiding in Halifax during that time. Halifax played an essential role in The Battle of the Atlantic.
It's all about location.
Take the Isle of Osiris. The isle, not the book. The book is about the isle. That's really what this blog is about. It and its sister island, Larupus. These are fictional islands set in the archipelago of Scotland. The Orkney and Shetland Islands are located here. Since there is established history on these islands, and I needed to be flexible with the people populating Osiris and Larupus, I created a fictional island chain in the same area.
So Osiris and Larupus are two islands in a small chain of islands in the same area, just north of Scotland.
Know the history of this area? The Jamie Poole series first introduces the islands as they existed about 1500 years ago. That's pre-Viking era. During the Viking era, just a few short centuries later, Vikings inhabited this region. The Larupine people are a mixed-race people with Scandinavian and Egyptian ethnicity. Told you I needed to be flexible with the population. There is a history behind the people's heritage. You gotta read the books to find out.
But beyond the people, there is a history to the islands themselves. The Shetland, the Orkneys, and the Faroe Islands. Volcanos. And here we begin to find our way back to today's headlines: As Iceland braces for a potential volcanic eruption, what is likely to happen and what are the risks? Beginning in The Isle of Osiris, this time the book, we learn that a volcano destroyed the Larupine chain of islands, leaving behind only Osiris.
In fact, the island chain was formed from volcanic activity and Larupus had an extinct volcano beneath it. Osiris itself is an extinct volcano as often referenced with the stone dome in the center of the island. In The Isle of Osiris, Jamie first explores the history when she arrives on the isle. She says:
“This dome on the island. What do you know about it?”
“Nothing. I…uh…didn’t explore it much. It’s an extinct volcano, considering the area’s history,” replied her dad.
Later, in Destiny of the Departed, Jamie further states:
I looked beyond the forest line. “Za’id, look. There’s a plume of black smoke above the trees. What is it? A fire?”
“It’s one of many thermal pools in this area. What do you think formed these islands? What do you think causes the earthquake tonight? There are underground fissures connecting them to a central source. That is or was an extinct
volcano—however you wish to consider it. The pools are not so different from the ones in Yellowstone, which is a supervolcano. That one is near a lake. When I was a kid, hot water seeped into the lake. It was fun to swim there because the water was warm year-round. In recent years lava seeps through those fissures. The lake has shrunk to half its size, and no one swims there. It’s considered cursed.”
“Has it always been that dark?” I studied the smoke as I recalled reading about the eruption of an Icelandic volcano, Eyjafjallajökull. There was a ridge along the ocean floor where tectonic plates shifted apart. The ridge extended north and south of Iceland. The Larupine Islands had to be on that same ridge...
This is the science behind the fiction of the Jamie Poole series. And here we find today's headlines. Iceland was formed by a volcano. Note specifically the image on the right labelled: Mid-Atlantic Ridge and adjacent plates. Volcanoes indicated in red. And secondary to this, yes, Yellowstone National Park sits atop a supervolcano.
And while this blog is not intended to capitalize on the suffering of the Icelandic people. I point out that Jamie Poole tells the history of a people who were impacted by a fictional volcano in a part of the world where volcanoes are anything but fiction. That is why the headline today exists. It may be interesting to further note that what Vikings knew as Ragnarök may well have been two volcanic events which occurred just before events in the Jamie Poole series. And I do explore these events in the storyline. This is why I will refer to Jamie's own Ragnarök. It's fictional and it's an historic event.
And as we watch today's news and hope for the best for Iceland, know that this is not the first event in this part of the world. But it is an event that is only now unfolding, and I personally hope for the safety of all the Icelandic people impacted by this volcano.