In 2027, destroying an embryo is considered first-degree murder. Fertility clinics still exist, giving hope and new life to thousands of infertile families, but they have to pass rigorous inspections by the United States Department of Embryo Preservation. Fail an inspection, and you will be prosecuted.
Brilliant young doctor Arianna Drake seems to be thriving in the spotlight: her small clinic surpasses every government requirement, and its popularity has spiked—a sudden, rapid growth that leaves the DEP chief mystified. When he discovers Arianna’s radical past as a supporter of an infamous scientist, he sends undercover agent Trent Rowe to investigate her for possible illegal activity. The secret he finally uncovers will deeply move him—and jeopardize them both.
“Taut, energetic, and imaginative... A remarkable debut!” (Lisa Unger, New York Times bestselling author of Fragile)
“Risky, daring. This story reminded me of the best of Margaret Atwood: a chilling and tangible portrait of the near future, where the best and the worst of humanity is challenged at every turn.” (James Rollins, New York Times bestselling author of Altar of Eden)
“A compelling and thought-provoking thriller…this frighteningly plausible novel will keep you turning the pages all night long. A stunning debut.” (Douglas Preston, New York Times bestselling author of Impact)
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Compelling, entertaining and impossible to put dow
This story is extraordinarily engaging and compelling. It takes an issue (embryonic stem cell research & treatments) that is often the subject of theoretical political debate, and brings the issue to life with a dramatic plot that expands in detail on the dictatorial government actions that would follow in practice from a formal, legal codification of the principle that life begins at conception. The political system of the year 2027 is a kind of theocratic fascism, in which the events of the plot unfold.
One sees the senseless persecution of characters who are subject to the cruel oppression of government agencies such as the Department of Embryo Protection (DEP) and the Department of Embryo and Fetus Protection (DEFP). The reader becomes enraged upon seeing the blind fanaticism of the devout government agents who act to protect embryos -- five day old clusters of undifferentiated cells that merely have the *potential* to become people -- at the expense of threatening to destroy the lives of *actual* people such as the heroine, Arianna Drake, who desperately fights to save her own life as the villainous Agent Dopp of the DEP fights with equal fervor to prevent her from doing so.
Ms. Peikoff shows us, through the logical unfolding of events, the deadly senselessness of an irrational mystic creed imposed by force on man, who by his nature must depend on reason to survive. She also shows us an inspiring picture of the heroism and unyielding persuit of values that rational men (and women) are capable of. And she does this while telling a damn good story with a well integrated plot and interesting characters. I'm now a Kira Peikoff fan and I can't wait to read her next book.
Yes. I will go ahead and do so again at some point to more carefully examine the philosophical arguments that lead the main characters to their positions.
The careful crafting of the science and philosophy
She was clear and added plenty to the story with her different voicing. The only drawback was the treble response made it difficult to listen on my car speakers--had to stay on headphones (might be my ears)
It Could Happen Tomorrow
A lot going on in this book. Great suspenseful story wrapped around philosophical issues of medical ethics, separation of church and state, validity of appeal to divine authority, faith vs. reason. The characters were believable. I felt I could relate to their struggles, especially when it came to deciding to take a leap from believing in a faith because of your past rather than listening to the reason that your brain wants to use. I could see that she was doing the "Ayn Rand" thing with her fiction (which was actually a plus to me and I was ready for it knowing some of the author's background), but I feel like she did a great job meshing the philosophy into an interesting plot. My fears were that some of the players might have come off as "straw men" but in my opinion the views of the antagonists were at least presented fairly. Another fear was that once reaching some of the philosophical arguments and concluding on the better positions that it might be hammered at the reader. Both of these concerns proved groundless. Well done!