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A River Divided, by George Paxinos

“Can science help us?” asked the little boy.

“It’s supposed to, my little friend. But there’s no sign of it. Science and technology are ruining humanity.” The professor sighed. “I can see the writing on the tombstone, ‘Homo sapiens: Intelligence made them extinct.’”

Urged by the flame of science, renowned neuroscientist George Paxinos has written his thrilling first novel that takes a neuropsychological approach to the question of nature versus nurture. In A River Divided (Amazonas, 979-8-218-26991-3), October 31st, 2023), Paxinos combines elements of sci-fi and eco-fiction to examine the limits of science and the brain in regard to safeguarding our environment. The result is a passionate dance of ideas that emerges as a demanding tango of scientific rationalism and literature.

An Obsessed Scientist

A River Divided follows Evelyn, a geneticist and amateur archeologist, who discovers a tomb while vacationing in Israel. Believing she has found the remains of Christ, she attempts to revive the DNA found preserved at the site so that she can clone Him. But with human cloning being both illegal and unprecedented, she takes the risk of carrying the embryo herself. Though more a scientist than a zealot, she wants to do everything to bring Him back to the world. If her experiment were successful, the consequence could be the salvation of a dying Earth.

The result of her daring discovery is the birth of identical twins Christopher and José, who are raised apart and unaware of each other’s existence— one in the affluent suburbs of Sydney and the other in the slums of Buenos Aires. As different artists would sculpt different statues from the same block of marble, different environments produce different characters out of the same DNA. The twins are destined to clash, adversaries in an almighty battle for the Amazon.

“A modern, ancient-Greek-like tragedy, managing to shake one’s priorities while unveiling an interconnection between ethics, bioethics, religion, faith, science, environmental awareness and pure human love.”

— Vicky Valla, Ph.D.

A Scientist and Environmental Activist

George Paxinos is a visionary neuroscientist who has discovered and mapped more brain regions than anyone in history. He uses principles of the mind, free will, and consciousness from neuroscience to shape the characters of his eco-fiction novel, A River Divided. An environmentalist himself, his novel explores some of the most important questions of the 21st Century: Is the human brain capable of solving the environmental crisis it created? Is this generation creating the conditions for the extinction of its progeny? In a battle of nature versus nurture, which will be victorious? 

Science and idealism are woven together in this novel about the search for meaning, for love, and for an understanding of what is important for us both as individuals and as actors in the environment. The characters of A River Divided will stay with you long after you read the powerful and evocative last sentence: “A Child, I will bring to the world a child.”