(spoiler-free review)

In a near-future, 17-year-old Jenna Fox wakes up one day without any memory of her past life. She’s told by her parents that she was in a coma after suffering a terrible accident, but from the start something doesn’t feel right.

Together with Jenna (our first-person narrator) we start discovering the truth behind her past and present.

It’s the type of book I’d love to read in class or with a book club. Jenna’s situation is the perfect base for an interesting debate into all sorts of ethical dilemmas better discussed in a group with mixed ages and backgrounds. I would be especially interested in the opinion of parents.

The best thing about The Adoration of Jenna Fox is that it’s written to get the reader to question him/herself. It adds layers of grey to areas that weren’t black or white in the first place. In the endless debate about scientists playing God (or even about things like the death penalty), I’m fascinated about how our strong convictions tend to blur when it gets personal. As humans we might be instinctively against certain scientific advances, but what if it happens to us, to our children/parents/best friend?

For a book dealing with such strong topics and emotions, The Adoration of Jenna Fox was strangely subdued and quiet (bordering on the flat). From the moment the Big Secret is out, the tension is released and never really picks up during the second half of the book, even when Higher Secrets are reveled. The ending also never delivered on the expected conflict and ties up too nicely, and I could have done without the luck-warm romance. I wasn’t in love with the book, BUT…

It was well worth the reading and I’ve had great dinner-table conversations because of it.

***

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