Canongate pre-empts 'thrilling' popular science debut

Canongate pre-empts 'thrilling' popular science debut

Canongate is to publish Sally Adee's debut popular science work We Are Electric, an exploration and history of the electricity that runs through every living organism. 

Simon Thorogood, editorial director at Canongate, pre-empted world all language rights from Carrie Plitt at Felicity Bryan Associates. Thorogood said "We Are Electric is the best kind of popular science book—one that takes an urgent, important and emerging science and breaks it open for the general reader, and one that does so in elegant and accessible style."

The synopsis states: "Bioelectricity is the electricity that runs through every living thing. It is the reason why our brains can send signals to the rest of our bodies, but also why we develop in the womb and why our body knows to heal itself. But it is not just the nervous system: our skin, bones, even tumours inside us all press electricity into service for their own ends. It might also be the next big thing in science – if we can crack the bioelectric code, much like we did with the genetic code, it will have all sorts of implications for our intelligence and our health. 

"In We Are Electric, award-winning science writer Sally Adee takes us through the thrilling history of bioelectricity and into the future of this discipline: from Galvani versus Volta, to the medical charlatans claiming to use electricity to cure everything from infertility to cancer, to the advances in the field helped along by the axons of giant squids, and finally to the amazing brain implants and healing cuffs that await us in the future."

Adee is a science and technology writer, most recently as features editor at the New Scientist. Now a freelance journalist, her writing has appeared in publications including the New York Times, BBC Future, the Economist and Quartz. She is currently the science consultant for the TV adaptation of Naomi Alderman’s "The Power", produced by Amazon Studios. 

She said: "I am thrilled to be joining Canongate and I'm so delighted to introduce readers to the strange, dangerous, and (sometimes literally) mind-blowing history and future of biological electricity."

Publication is slated for spring 2022.