pandemo (pandemo) wrote,

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Flunked Biology 101?

Currently, I'm in a trilogy by Heather Graham Pozzessere about medical doctors, brothers, during the Civil War. Vol. one is One Wore Blue, which I picked up today from the public library, after being warned to read them in order, followed by And One Wore Gray, and the last one is And One Rode West. I got the last two of the three from my mother/sister, and the gal has a ton of romance books out, so I'm not sure how good her research is.

I just finished one that defied believability, about a gal whose twin brother died in Australia. She is flying home on a charter jet when the plane crashes with just her and the pilot aboard, landing on a Pacific Island.

Deserted, of course, with the obligatory coconuts, which didn't set my teeth on edge.

Then comes the bananas... in the same two mile patch of deserted volcanic island? Seeded, perhaps, by migratory banana seed eating birds???

Follow that with a tropical storm with winds of 75 mph expected, (which the pilot can tell in advance from looking at the sky sans instruments) so they bury their meager supplies, and TIE THEMSELVES TO MANGROVE trees, first climbing on the roots of one that is small enough to hug, where he ties her wrists together so she won't be swept away, then wraps their bodies with the clothing she'd carefully sewed into strips to make a "sheet" with the emergency needle and thread she'd had in her purse. Now, even if someone once did live there and seed things into the area not normally found there, why mangrove instead of mahogany, or something else that would produce a useful crop? (I also wondered about storm surge drowning these poor folk as they were tied at sea level plus the height of the roots out of the ground... They needed at least to go up the side of the old volcano cone for the tree to tie themselves to, I'd think...

Later yet, he creates some shampoo with the addition of key lime to the coconut... and figs pop up somewhere else.

Later yet, they find the remnants of a man-made garden with carrots, sweet potatoes and ? that were supposedly self-seeded, all neatly growing in rows covered over by weeds. Well, the weeds I believe!

The plane has no little black box emitting a signal, either. I just couldn't suspend my disbelief quite that much. Lord of the Flies this wasn't...

Now, my own first novel is definitely fiction, and I did move a prickly cactus too far north, deliberately, for the plot to work out, but I didn't indulge in a wholesale redo of the biology of the area otherwise. When I needed pests, I checked to see what was native to the area and found out about how they lived, and made an interaction that was at least biologically accurate.

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