Gamble crafts a tale of espionage in ‘Zeroscape’

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Book: Former LANL physicist recently appeared on KCHF-TV

The possibility of espionage in a laboratory town is a very real threat. It’s hard not to imagine that spies are lurking and working in towns like Los Alamos.
Former Los Alamos National Laboratory physicist and author Michael Gamble brings those fears to life in his book, “Zeroscape.”
A modern-day espionage thriller set in Los Alamos and Santa Fe, “Zeroscape” follows Richard Adams, a disgraced professor from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. LANL has recruited Adams, “verifying the operability of a post-Soviet Republic’s gamma ray laser,” according to a description of “Zeroscape.”
He becomes involved with traitors, as a mastermind works behind the scenes, to control Adams’ life. He must act when he learns that the world’s nuclear future is at stake.
The book was published in 2010, but seems to be gaining popularity after Gamble did a book signing at Otowi Station and appeared on various television and radio shows.
He most recently was featured on KCHF-TV. He taped a show with Diane Kinderwater, of “Issues and Answers with Diane Kinderwater,” during which he discusses everything from his days at LANL to his views on nuclear weaponry; the commercial nuclear power industry; renewable alternatives and “Zeroscape.” There’s still a chance to catch the show at 2 p.m. April 16 and 17.
Gamble, who grew up in Florida, also worked at the lab in Oak Ridge Tenn. and in the Silicon Valley.
According to his website, while at LANL, he “researched directed-energy devices, such as terawatt laser and neutral particle beam systems, for which he was awarded a laboratory commendation for Distinguished Performance. He holds a master’s degree in nuclear science and a doctorate in mechanical engineering. He also completed a postdoctoral fellowship in materials science at MIT.”
Despite his tie to the lab and the fact that he worked with Wen Ho Lee’s wife at LANL, Gamble said “Zeroscape” is not autobiographical, however, he did draw on some real-life people he knows to help shape some of the book’s characters.
He drew inspiration from some of his favorite authors, like Agatha Christie and Wilkie Collins. He said he re-read the “Woman in White” by Collins, to have a “leg up.”
“Zeroscape” took five years to write. “I was on a five-year plan to get the pacing perfect,” Gamble said. When it was finally published, it didn’t get much attention until he wrote an op-ed piece for a newspaper in Boston about the “God particle.”
“It went viral,” Gamble said of his op-ed. When the book was first released, he expected it to be a hit in the Southwest, “right out of the box,” but instead found that those most interested in it hailed from Tucson, Ariz.
Interest wasn’t sparked in New Mexico until he began to do book signings, one of which was Garcia Street Books in Santa Fe.
Gamble said he worked with various people on adjusting the book before publication.
“Sarah Lovett took me to task and made me rewrite it,” he said. “It was a big commitment … I’m most proud that women like my book.” He said when he signed copies at Otowi Station Book store, there was a “line of ladies there.” He attributes his female fan base to the fact that the book contains a femme fatale, Carmen C de Baca.
“Women identify with Carmen,” Gamble said.
He said he found it difficult to stick to his desire to write a meaningful thriller. “I didn’t want to trivialize it. I stuck to my guns. It was difficult,” Gamble said.
His most enjoyable experience in writing the book came from seeing a meaningful plot. He also said he had a really great agent. In addition, he was able to “explore something interesting and real in New Mexico,” by mixing Crypto-Judaism into the storyline via one of his characters.
“Dress British, think Yiddish is his code, how he lives his life,” he said.
For more information on Gamble or “Zeroscape,” visit zeroscape-thebook.com. Visit video.foxnews.com/v/1555461432001/ to see the interview.