The development economist on his debut SF thriller, Lament For T he Fallen
What’s Lament For The Fallen about?
Samara escapes from the spacebased prison Tartarus, smashing into the jungle near an isolated Nigerian village. He’s injured and losing his sanity to the synthetic intelligence with which he shares his mind.
Did you spend time in Nigeria?
Yes and knowing that this was a once- in- a- lifetime opportunity, I took a road- trip to Calabar to experience the city where much of the novel would be set. The narrative is definitely improved by my time there. How did your work as an economist impact the book?
The central motif is that, “even as some would explore the stars, remember that many who remain behind scratch out an existence of near starvation in the dust so easily shed.” A technologically advanced society will not necessarily have universal distribution of that technology. How long have you been writing? For decades. I started
Lament when I was 12. Originally, the story was a simple jail- break tale that saw prisoners forced to run the gauntlet of robotic assassins. Are you working on a second novel?
It’s almost complete and it’s set in Senegal where terrorists and energy tsars are conspiring to prevent the development of new solar farms that threaten their control of the region.
Lament For The Fallen is published in hardback by Doubleday on 28 July.