Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Adoration of Jenna Fox

Pearson, Mary E. 2008. THE ADORATION OF JENNA FOX. New York: Henry Holt. ISBN 0805076689 [Suggested Grade Levels 8-12]

After waking from a year long coma following an auto accident, Jenna Fox has no recollection of who she is and why her family has recently moved. Aided by home movies, bits of memories begin to return, but Jenna feels that something about her isn’t quite right and she struggles daily to find the answer to why she seems different.

When Jenna discovers the reasons why she isn’t all her original self, she is horrified and repelled—and illegal. How she struggles to make things right after her discovery is hard for her family to understand, but Jenna is finally able to make her own choice. The final twist of the story is unexpected and poignant.

At first, the story appears to be a predictable futuristic story of medical advances. However, surprises continue to appear and take the story in a different direction from what is expected. While this book is about a girl coming to know herself, it is also a compelling tale of future scientific possibilities seen through the eyes and body of Jenna Fox.

This book makes a case for the necessity for medical ethics and allows the reader to consider what is right, and raises the question of how far should medical science go. Pitting love for a child against illegal practices elicits questions that remain long after the book is read.

Other books for teens about coping with their life:
Werlin, Nancy. IMPOSSIBLE. ISBN 0803730020
Zarr, Sara. STORY OF A GIRL. ISBN 0316014532

By Shirley Smith Duke

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