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Sebastian Faulks talks to Adam Rutherford

The Seventh Son

Winter Weekend 2023, 

Sebastian Faulks, bestselling author of Snow Country and Birdsong, returns to discuss his latest novel. The Seventh Son confronts prescient issues of surrogacy and medical ethics, weaving a literary thriller revolving around a megalomaniacal tech entrepreneur and a very special – and unusual – child.

When a young American academic Talissa Adam offers to carry another woman's child, she has no idea of the life-changing consequences. Behind the doors of the Parn Institute, a billionaire entrepreneur plans to stretch the boundaries of ethics as never before. Through a series of IVF treatments, which they hope to keep secret, they propose an experiment that will upend the human race as we know it.

Seth, the baby, is delivered to hopeful parents Mary and Alaric, but when his differences start to mark him out from his peers, he begins to attract unwanted attention.

The Seventh Son is a spectacular examination of what it is to be human. It asks the question: just because you can do something, does it mean you should? Sweeping between New York, London, and the Scottish Highlands, this is an extraordinary novel about unrequited love and unearned power.

Faulks talks to scientist, writer and broadcaster Adam Rutherford.

Sebastian Faulks talks to Adam Rutherford