Anne Charnock Flips The Script

By Carl Slaughter: In the Philip K. Dick-nominated A Calculated Life, Anne Charnock took on genetics. In Sleeping Embers of an Ordinary Mind, she took on gender. In April 2017’s Dreams Before the Start of Time, she explores fertility. In her February 2017 novella, The Enclave, set in the same fictional universe as A Calculated Life, she explores the dystopian side of society, whereas A Calculated Life explored the utopia side.

A CALCULATED LIFE

Big business is booming and state institutions are thriving thanks to advances in genetic engineering, which have produced a compliant population free from addictions. Violent crime is now a rarity. Mayhew McCline, a major corporation that analyzes global trends, has hired a genius: Jayna.

A brilliant mathematical modeler, she has the ability to produce accurate predictions that are both good for the world and good for the bottom line. Her latest coup: finding a link between northeasterly winds and violent crime. When a string of events contradicts her forecasts – including a multiple homicide on the wrong day – Jayna suspects she needs more data and better intuition. She needs to understand what it means to be “normal,” so she disrupts her strict daily routine and, unknowingly, sets herself on a path that leads to new encounters, new experiences, and – perhaps most dangerous – new emotions.

SLEEPING EMBERS OF AN ORDINARY MIND

History is story telling. But some stories remain untold.

In fifteenth-century Italy, Paolo Uccello recognizes the artistic talent of his young daughter, Antonia, and teaches her how to create a masterpiece. The girl composes a painting of her mother and inadvertently sparks an enduring mystery.

In the present day, a copyist painter receives a commission from a wealthy Chinese businessman to duplicate a Paolo Uccello painting. Together, the painter and his teenage daughter visit China, and in doing so they begin their escape from a tragic family past.

In the twenty-second century, a painting is discovered that’s rumored to be the work of Paolo Uccello’s daughter. This reawakens an art historian’s dream of elevating Antonia Uccello, an artist ignored by history because of her gender.

Stories untold. Secrets uncovered. But maybe some mysteries should remain shrouded.

A brilliant mathematical modeler, she has the ability to produce accurate predictions that are both good for the world and good for the bottom line. Her latest coup: finding a link between northeasterly winds and violent crime. When a string of events contradicts her forecasts – including a multiple homicide on the wrong day – Jayna suspects she needs more data and better intuition. She needs to understand what it means to be “normal,” so she disrupts her strict daily routine and, unknowingly, sets herself on a path that leads to new encounters, new experiences, and – perhaps most dangerous – new emotions.

DREAMS BEFORE THE START OF TIME

In a near-future London, Millie Dack places her hand on her belly to feel her baby kick, resolute in her decision to be a single parent. Across town, her closest friend – a hungover Toni Munroe – steps into the shower and places her hand on a medic console. The diagnosis is devastating.

In this stunning, bittersweet family saga, Millie and Toni experience the aftershocks of human progress as their children and grandchildren embrace new ways of making babies. When infertility is a thing of the past, a man can create a child without a woman, a woman can create a child without a man, and artificial wombs eliminate the struggles of pregnancy. But what does it mean to be a parent? A child? A family?

Through a series of interconnected vignettes that spans five generations and three continents, this emotionally taut story explores the anxieties that arise when the science of fertility claims to deliver all the answers.

THE ENCLAVE

Set in the world of Anne Charnock’s novel A Calculated Life, The Enclave reveals the harsh reality of life at the bottom of the heap in late twenty-first century Britain.

Advances in genetic engineering have created a population free of addictive behaviour. Violent crime is rare. But out in the enclaves it’s survival of the fittest for Lexie — embroiled in a recycling clan and judged unfit for cognitive implants — and Caleb, a young climate migrant working as an illegal, who is eager to prosper and one day find his father.