Tuesday, 4 October 2016

BLOG TOUR: Guest Post from Matt Dickinson, author of Lie Kill Walk Away


My guest blogger today is Matt Dickinson, author of the brand new YA thriller Lie Kill Walk Away.

GOING VIRAL! Why Bioterror (and a love story) are at the heart of my new thriller Lie Kill Walk Away’ 

One of the questions I often get asked in schools is:

‘What’s the most dangerous journey you’ve ever done?’

The expected answer is probably Everest (four per cent fatality for every 100 who reach the top and return) or perhaps K2 (twenty-nine per cent fatality for every 100 that reach the top and return alive).

No. The most dangerous journey I ever made was a clandestine one, sneaking across the border into Uzbekistan to visit an abandoned Soviet bio-weapons testing facility in the heart of the Aral Sea. I was the director of a documentary film for Channel 4, following presenter Nick Myddelton in a series called Going to Extremes.

It was certainly extreme. In forty-two degree heat (and dressed in bio-hazard protection suits) we travelled with a band of smugglers across the salty Aral Sea. It was a spooky voyage, passing the wrecks of Soviet trawlers that now stand abandoned on the salt flats of this polluted and almost desiccated lake.

When we reached the island of Voz the real terrors began. We filmed the laboratories where sinister bio-weapons were concocted at the height of the cold war.

Anthrax. Equine Flu Virus. Ebola. Really lethal stuff. 

Toxic cocktails cooked up in the minds of Soviet war mongers and stored by the ton ready to be deployed against the west.

A teaspoon of some of those bioweapons could kill everyone in London if it was ever deployed.

It was a terrifying experience, especially to witness the testing rooms where we found beds with restraining straps on them. Rumours say they tested deadly bio weapons on prisoners? Was it true? We couldn’t verify it but the evidence was there in front of our eyes.

I still have nightmares about that filming trip to this day … and that was why I chose a bio-weapons theme at the heart of my new thriller Lie Kill Walk Away.

I chose two teenage characters, Joe and Rebecca, and plunged them into a fast-moving terrorist threat with a bio-weapon at the heart of the tale. Of course I couldn’t resist sprinkling a bit of chemistry into the mix ... by which I mean Lurvvve! Thrillers are always far more interesting when the protagonists end up fancying each other don’t you think? Just ask James Bond!

I am proud of the book but I will never forget the terrors of the place where it all began.

Huge thank you to Matt for stopping by on the blog! Like Kill Walk Away is available to pre-order now!

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