A Novel of the Anthropocene

By (author): Jaspreet Singh
ISBN 9781927366974
Softcover | Publication Date: May 3, 2022
Book Dimensions: 5.5 in. x 8.5 in.
248 Pages

About the Book

In his playful yet deeply serious third novel Jaspreet Singh links a fossil fraud in India, an ice core archive in Canada, and a climate change laboratory in Germany.

Jaspreet Singh’s much anticipated third novel traces a past crime that suddenly becomes confrontable on another continent. Lila, a brilliant Indian-born science journalist, and Lucia, an aspiring European-born writer, meet at a creative writing workshop in Calgary. Both try to use fiction to work through real-life trauma, but their entangled paths may reach all the way back to Lila’s time as a geology student in the foothills of the Himalayas.

How best to tell Lila’s story and follow the links between a fossil fraud in India, an ice core archive in Canada, the Burgess Shale quarry, and a climate change laboratory in Germany? As their detective work unfolds, the two women encounter some of today’s most urgent and fascinating science, as well as the many shapes of internal criticism in the sciences. They also come face to face with ecological grief and human-non-human entanglements. With this playful and deeply serious genre-blurring work, Singh gives a new direction to the novel in the Anthropocene.

About the Author(s)

Jaspreet Singh’s non-fiction has appeared in Granta, Brick,, and the New York Times. He is the author of the novels Chef and Helium, the story collection Seventeen Tomatoes, the poetry collection November, and most recently, the memoir My Mother, My Translator. His work has been published internationally and has been translated into several languages. He lives in Calgary.


Face is an interwoven novel that takes readers on a series of journeys. At its core, it’s an exploration of climate anxiety and how individual people to address or ignore facts—and whether we can trust what we see with our own eyes.” —Buzzfeed

Face is riotous with erudition–a heady mix of global climate warnings, earth sciences, fossil discoveries and hoaxes, and speculative fiction (Liu Cixin and Octavia Butler get nods), all amalgamated into gorgeous prose. Lucky readers who choose this one can expect temporal shifts, compounding mysteries and irresistibly unreliable—and even otherworldly—narration.” —Shelf Awareness

“Dense with observation, this scalpel-sharp narrative flinches from nothing. It approaches memory, family, history, and the great oncoming disaster of the Anthropocene with courage bordering on fury.” —Premee Mohamed, author of The Annual Migration of Clouds

Face is a mesmerizing novel about science and climate research in the Anthropocene . . . [that] manages to convey some of the most wonderful aspects of doing science, and at the same time (via the character of a ruthless palaeontologist) the dark, criminal side all scientists must remain vigilant about.” —Helmut Weissert, professor Earth Sciences, ETH Zürich, Switzerland

Face sweeps us up in a science journalist’s struggle to forge meaning from her own, and the earth’s, fractured memories. Murder mystery, ghost story, science novel? Singh gives us an unsettling novel of ideas that questions the power of the stories we tell—about science, history, and our own lives—even as it employs that power to probe climate guilt and anxiety.” —Susan M. Gaines, author of Accidentals and Carbon Dreams

“A thought-provoking tale about science, duplicity, climate research, and narrative.” —Prairie Books NOW

“Singh brilliantly manages to control what might otherwise have been an unwieldy mix of ghost story, crime fiction, doppelganger fiction, science writing, cultural biography, fantasy and critical race theory under the rubric of speculative fiction” —Alberta Views