Featured Novella: Flowers For Algernon

MMU Novella Award

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by Dan Peacock

“My name is Charlie Gordon I werk in Donners bakery where Mr Donner gives me 11 dollers a week and bred or cake if I want. I am 32 yeres old and next munth is my brithday.”

Daniel Keyes’ Flowers For Algernon is often cited as a classic piece of science-fiction, but there’s the feeling that branding it as “sci-fi” might turn away a lot of people that might otherwise have loved this novella. There are no spaceships, no aliens, no time-travel; just solid fiction with science at its core.

Charlie Gordon, the narrator, has an IQ of 68 when he signs up for an experimental surgical procedure to vastly increase his intelligence. His diary entries (which form the book), which are initially riddled with spelling mistakes and cloudy observations, slowly become more coherent, insightful and revelatory as his IQ climbs… and climbs. In a manner of…

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