Thursday, September 3, 2020

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An Elegant Solution by Anne Atkins - Book Tour + Giveaway


An Elegant Solution 
by Anne Atkins 
Genre: Contemporary Fiction 


When someone mentions the City of Cambridge you probably think of an iconic building, its four corners stretching out of the once medieval mud and into the arms of everlasting heaven, its white limestone yearning into eternity... and without even knowing exactly what ephemeral joys or permanent wonders the vision brings to mind, it s a safe bet that the one thought which doesn t occur to you is that the Chapel might not be there by Christmas. Theo (Theophilus Ambrose Fitzwilliam Wedderburn to his friends) is a Junior Research Fellow in Number Theory. Prompted by a supervisee to demonstrate how to trace the provenance of bitcoins, Theo happens across a shocking revelation, with embarrassing ramifications for the whole University. Meanwhile he is being stalked unseen by someone from his childhood. To his annoyance, Theo falls for a cheap con... and discovers a horror set not only to rock the very seat of power itself but to change the face of Cambridge and its beautifully iconic image for ever. 


“In other words,” Theo turned back, his face very still, “Crispin is engaged in supposedly independent research. Whilst going to a lot of trouble to hide large payments from an interest which would very much prefer his findings not to be independent at all.”
“Hey, man,” Evan said soothingly. “It’s not that bad. So, his research is compromised.”
“Not that bad?” Theo demanded, moving his spectacles very slightly on his nose. “Not that bad? His integrity is compromised. The college is compromised. The entire University of Cambridge is compromised.”
“Surely not,” Charlotte said. “One bad apple . . .”

“The foundation on which we all conduct research is compromised.” He looked away, collecting his thoughts. Letting the colour in his face subside. “Kute Kittens,” he resumed after a long, slow breath, “is campaigning for freer access to porn. Wanting the internet, all websites, to be uncensored. No frontiers. Crispin is researching how porn affects young viewers. Whether erotic images have a permanent effect on children’s neural pathways. Whether this later affects their relationships, influences how they view the opposite sex, creates an acceptance of violence. His findings will be published in peer-reviewed papers. Reviewed by other psychologists who will assume his research was kosher. What he ‘discovers’,” he paused, “will enter the field of expertise, become part of the body of accepted fact. Some journalist on the Daily Mail – or perhaps, in this case, the Guardian – will skim-read it in five minutes and summarise it in an argument for free access to porn. At some stage the House of Commons will decide to vote on some related piece of legislation. Busy MPs will ask their unpaid interns just out of journalism college who have never been introduced to the concept of independent thought let alone proper research, to investigate the issues. These dippy, not very clever stooges will find the Guardian article. It wouldn’t occur to them to consider first sources. Even if they did, all they would find would be the lies Crispin has been paid to produce. Overworked politicians will vote on the basis of those lies. Do you not see?” He took off his spectacles and wiped his face. “Somewhere down the line, Crispin’s bribed and far from independent or indeed academic research will abuse the minds of children, who might then go on to abuse others. 



Anne Atkins is the author of several novels, most recently An Elegant Solution, a literary thriller set in Cambridge, with a dashing Aspergic hero. 

Previous novels are The Lost Child, On Our Own and A Fine and Private Place, all featuring a child’s viewpoint. 

She has also written several books of non-fiction. Split Image: Male and Female After God's Likeness, is a layperson’s guide to biblical teaching about the sexes. Child-Rearing for Fun: Trust Your Instincts and Enjoy Your Children gives parents the confidence to know they're getting it right, ideas to help them do it even better, and an awful lot of laughs. Agony Atkins is a compilation of her agony aunt columns in the Daily Telegraph and contains much wisdom and lots more laughs. 

She is a regular contributor to Thought for the Day on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, as well as many other radio and television programmes and most national newspapers. 



Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway! 




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