Alex Lockwood

Writer, activist and public speaker

What is the half-life of a secret? The Chernobyl Privileges

Arriving at midlife with a string of failed jobs behind him, Anthony Fahey knows he’s lucky to be given a last chance as a radiation monitor at the Her Majesty’s Naval Base Clyde, where Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons are kept.

Already struggling to keep his marriage together after the death of his wife’s father, Anthony finds himself at the centre of an emergency when an accident on a Trident submarine throws the base into crisis.

But as the situation worsens, Anthony’s history threatens this opportunity to finally prove himself in the world of nuclear power. Old memories and buried secrets from his childhood reach into the present, as Anthony begins to understand that it isn’t only radiation that has a half-life.

Inspired by real events, The Chernobyl Privileges is a searing psychological drama that depicts the traumatic experience of surviving disaster. Both heart-warming and tragic, it explores the consequences of decisions we are forced to make and that shape our lives.

The Chernobyl Privileges is published with Roundfire Books (an imprint of John Hunt Publishing) in Autumn 2018.

– Shortlisted for the Impress Prize for New Writing, 2016
– Chosen in the Valley Press First Chapter Competition, 2016
“This atmospheric novel introduces a powerful new voice in British fiction. I was gripped by Lockwood’s tale which brings together the personal and political, the spectre of Chernobyl and the continuing controversy of Britain’s nuclear deterrent. A haunting message for our uncertain times.” – Andrew Crumey, Booker-longlisted author of Mr Mee
“The Chernobyl Privileges is a compelling, well-wrought and sharply intelligent book. In haunting and thought-provoking ways, it draws the reader into a complex understanding of what connects the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 to the UK today and the future of Europe.”  – Nicholas Royle, author of An English Guide to Birdwatching
“A tight thriller for the modern age that entertains as easily as it provokes.” – Thomas Hocknell, author of The Life Assistance Agency
“An exceptional piece of writing … What extraordinary detail and characterisation; I was gripped by so much of it.” – Jemima Hunt, The Writers’ Practice
“A great read. And a fabulous idea to combine old and new, Chernobyl and Trident. What an interesting and gripping story.” – Adam Strange, Sphere Publishing (Little, Brown)