My challenge for this book review? How to "translate" and condense 4 pages of notes and about 30 stickies placed throughout the book without writing another whole book in the process! ;) One of the things I loved most about this book was the fact that certain scenes/explanations were left up to the reader to interpret. I always feel that makes for a much more personalized reading experience, and great discussion with other readers! That proved true for our book club!
How ironic and tragic that Raney helps her grandfather avoid institutionalization, but only a guardian ad litem, a total stranger to her, in conjunction with her medical team, oversees her own care. Her "husband" (I'm using this term loosely.) David refused to participate, not only denying Jake access to her, but also lying to him about her unexpected and sudden departure. This prompted discussion of living wills and self-selected medical advocates, both of which each of us should have prepared, even if we do have children! Interestingly, two of us have legally appointed friends to serve as our medical advocates, thus relieving our own children of the ultimate responsibility to "choose," if we are ever find ourselves in a similar predicament in the future.
We also considered the possibility of "fatal flaws" in individuals' genetic codes, particularly with regard to bearing children and possibly passing those flaws along to future generations. There were mixed reactions among us as we discussed various scenarios where our genetic code could influence us to make certain life-altering decisions. Personally, I don't want to know... Firstly, just how accurate is this "analysis" and how can we know exactly what the chances are of transmission to future generations? (In my opinion, we can't...) After all, "scientific knowledge" is "man-made"--it is us trying to make sense of our world. That is not to diminish its value, but I believe it would be dangerous to ever consider it to be absolute, because it isn't...rather, it is ever-changing as new "discoveries" occur.
Exactly who was responsible for Raney's accident? None of us felt certain, even after rereading the passage aloud. And to what degree did it really matter? In my opinion, Dave was already destroying both Raney and Jake psychologically; it was a simple extension to imagine him harming her physically. And...did Charlotte finally decide not to keep providing mechanical life to a human body? Or did she follow the usual protocol and continue with medical interventions? But...what would you do?
As many people may already know, Gemini is an astrological sign referring to "twins." So, where are the "twins" in this book? I highly recommend you read it to answer these questions for yourself! And aren't these two adorable?!? :)