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Master Class

Christina Dalcher
2020, 319 p.

Elena Fairchild has two daughters, sixteen-year-old Anne, who is bright and does very well at school, and Freddie, aged nine, an anxious child who struggles to keep her grades up. Elenas husband Malcolm is partly responsible for an education system where everyone is given a Q score, based on monthly testing. This determines a persons place in society: the higher the Q score, the more privileges are available. When Freddie fails her test and is sent to a state boarding school where parents can only visit once every three months, Elena, who is slowly starting to realise something sinister is going on, decides to give up her job as a teacher at an elite school to try to save her daughter. What makes this novel such a compelling read is the realisation that the events mentioned in the story are not as unimaginable as one might think but instead reflect the American eugenics movement of the early nineteenth century.


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