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Vapor Trails Paperback – May 11, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Sustainable Stories (May 11, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615297471
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615297477
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,101,607 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Roger Saillant, Executive Director of the Fowler Center for Sustainable Value at Case Western Reserve University, has held a number of senior executive positions in the energy and transportation industries. RP Siegel is an award-winning inventor, novelist, freelance journalist and environmental advocate.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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The characters in Vapor Trails are well-developed and the story compelling.
A. Khouri
The characters are believable, the story is exciting, and I found myself getting emotional on a couple of occasions.
John McGah
The story gripped me from the first page and I couldn't put the book down until I'd finished it.
Martha S. Brown

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By William Keyser on July 30, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like surprises. Siegel and Saillant surprised me. I actually started reading Vapor Trails because Roger is a colleague of mine. I had no idea he was a novelist. I had him pigeonholed as a businessman and now an MBA teacher, like myself. I thought I owed it to him to buy and read the book. But presumptions are dangerous.

This is a really good novel. Not a great masterpiece of literature, but a really good novel, because it is well written, a page turner, informative, has believable and memorable characters--and having read the book, my view of life has been changed.

At the outset the story and the characters seem mundane, almost forgettable, but in the same way as one gets to know a person in daily life, small details of their behavior and their individual preferences become apparent as the story proceeds. The first page will not survive as one of the great fictional openings, but the ordinariness is interesting enough to bring the reader to the next page.

Then as the people and action become real, the reader finds himself learning about situations that, while known, now gain depth through an insightful view from another angle. We learn about Hurricane Katrina from the inside: the sudden furore of being unexpectedly caught up in the ravaging storm, as a participant, not as an observer. This leads us on to an inside track on business situations taking place behind closed doors, but having great impact upon daily lives.

The layering of events and the characters drew me on to believe both the story and the technical information. The latter is offered with a gentle touch that actually makes it interesting. This is one of the merits of the book and why it makes not only great reading, but also convincing activism.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Cappy on September 4, 2009
Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book...a page-turning mystery-adventure of planetary proportions! It's both as an eco-adventure and an educational text rolled into one, making complex issues and conflicting interests come to the scale of real life through the chance convergence and intertangled storylines of its cast of characters. In print, this reminded me of the film Traffic, which did a great job of showing the chain of causes and effects...a great way to "connect the dots" from the viewpoints of us all being in the same complex system together. It's a story that broadens perspective while managing to combine the hot issue of global warming with some heated, steamy passages of very basic human experience. I hope this gains large readership, or better yet, gets turned into a movie. Well done! When's the sequel?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Seligman on August 15, 2009
Format: Paperback
The issues of environmental sustainability, corporate responsibility, and the global impacts of our collective decision-making as a species can sometimes seem to dominate the news and government policy and politics. Most everyone is now aware the crisis that confronts us, and whether or not you believe we are close to an apocalyptic breaking point or think the the whole thing has been drastically overblown, you are almost certainly aware of it in some way. The problem with issues like global climate change, environmental responsibility, and geopolitical policy is that it all seems to be happening to someone else, somewhere else, or is so abstract and technical as to be unapproachable. Eyes glaze over, and we move on to some topic more easily understood and opined upon.

Now here comes Vapor Trails, the new novel by R.P. Siegel and Roger Saillant, which dares to educate while holding our attention and entertaining us with a page-turning eco-thriller. Siegel and Saillant bring their impeccable credentials in the field of environmental sustainability and prove to us that at least some policy wonks can turn a phrase and speak about serious global concerns in language accessible and even exciting to those of us without the benefit of their credentials.

Vapor Trails is fun while remaining an important contribution to the literature of sustainability. Setting many of the key characters into the events surrounding a Katrina-like disaster in New Orleans lets us know right from the beginning that although the novel will unfold across the globe and within corporate offices, that the effects of the decisions made by corporations and governments are never far from home, nor far from a reality we have all witnessed with our own eyes.

Vapor Trails is worth a read. It's worth your read. It is cinematic in its unfolding, and when it's a "major motion picture" you'll be able to say you were one of the first to read and know about this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rajesh Oza on June 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I had read "Vapor Trails" a while back and found myself flying through this entertaining novel. Last week, I gave a copy to my son and he zoomed through it in one sitting (literally one sitting, while riding the Amtrak through Northern California).

Initially I had read "Vapor Trails" as a reviewer or editor would, that is in a critical manner. After writing down that "you rarely, if ever, saw your own [vapor trail]," I put my reviewer's pencil away and read for the sheer enjoyment and thrill that this riveting novel provides. While the scientist and engineer in me was pulled in by the details about CO2 sequestration, and the organization behaviorist soaked in the E-Staff dynamics and the whole systems implications, the fiction writer and reader was thoroughly entertained by the narrative and the character transformations.

There is a serious cinematic appeal that makes "Vapor Trails" both educational and entertaining. Indeed I can see a major motion picture in the works. Read the book before Hollywood makes it a "must-see."
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