Page 108. " And when the hydrogen build-up blows the roof off the containment chamber? "
Chenobyl: Abandoned after the explosion
Public DomainChenobyl: Abandoned after the explosion - Credit: Jason Minshull

An historical instance of this happening is the incident at Chernobyl in Ukraine on 26th April 1986. This occurred when a team of inadequately trained safety workers tried to speed up safety tests by contravening a series of safety regulations. One of the reactors exploded thus prompting a number of other explosions. A plume of radioactive fallout shot into the atmosphere and dissipated over vast areas to the east and west. It is thought that over 60% of the fallout landed in Belarus, with nuclear rain falling as far away as Ireland. Fifty six people died as a direct result of the blast, but thousands more have died, and will continue to die, from cancer. Following the event 336, ooo people were forced to resettle outside the exclusion zone. This video clip provides an informative if partisan overview of the incident.


Page 111. " Carole King's Tapestry LP is playing at a low volume. "

Carole King's Tapestry was released in 1971, dominated the US no.1 spot for twelve weeks and remained in the charts for over six years.


Page 113. " The assassin strokes a krugerrand in his pocket. "
Public DomainKrugerrand - Credit: Chris Welsh

The krugerrand is a South African gold coin first minted in 1967. It was the first coin not to have a fixed face value, but is valued according to the market price of the gold of which it is partly made.

Page 121. " The store clerk scribbles himself a to-do note, and lifts the stylus back to the start of 'Por Por qué llorax blanca niña', lowers the needle onto shimmering black vinyl, and dreams of Jewish shepherd boys plucking their lyres on starlit Iberian hillsides. "

Sephardic romances date back to medieval Spain but have since picked up influences from both the East and West. The song title translates as 'Why do you weep, fair child?' and was written to be played or sung at a time of mourning.

Hespèrion XXI, Montserrat Figueras, Jordi Savall – Por Que Llorax Blanca Niña - Romances Vocales: El Rey Que Tanto Madruga (Sofía)


Page 123. " 'Hey. You're not taking Blood on the Tracks.' "

Blood on the Tracks (1975) is widely regarded as one of Bob Dylan's best albums and has been interpreted as a highly confessional piece of work. Dylan, however, claims that the songs were mostly inspired by the short stories of Anton Chekhov. The album reached number 1 in the US and number 4 in the UK. It remains one of his largest selling albums.

Listen on Spotify:   Tangled Up In Blue    Simple Twist of Fate