The tiger in this photo may look like a blob — look again. It is HUGE. Its vast eyes are fixed on its potential lunch. This is where I am going in November/December, in the depths of the Siberian winter, on a research trip for my second novel TIGER. Temperatures are -30C and the snow can be six feet deep. There’s no phone signal, and the list of special kit I need to take is 3 pages long. I am very apprehensive, being a poor traveller who dislikes the cold, but also I am desperately excited about it all. Half the book is set in Siberia, half in the UK, where a zookeeper and a Siberian tiger form a special relationship.