As you may remember from my Summer Reading post, I shared five titles that I will surely read this summer (no matter how many great books try to derail me from my reading plan). If I’m tracking correctly, this is the second of the five.
Inheritance by Dani Shapiro
The Premise: When Dani submits her saliva for DNA testing via Ancestry.com, she gets the surprise of a lifetime! Her half-sister and her are not related. They thought they had the same father, but that is not the case.
There were times the book felt needlessly drawn out. However, Shapiro does a fantastic job exploring the questions and doubts that come up when her heritage is in question. There are feelings of betrayal, knowing that secrets were kept and lies were told. There are religious doubts, as she realizes her parents crossed lines their Orthodox Jewish heritage did not support. There is a bunch of self doubt as she starts to re-evaluate life occurrences through a new lens. It’s traumatic, no mater what your age.
How much of our identity do we base on what we know about the history of our family? And how much does that change when you realize you aren’t related at all? This book explores what makes a family a family, but it also brings up some ethical issues behind artificial insemination, and the current practice of tracing our DNA.
Do you like memoirs? Do paternity surprises sound interesting? What about the idea of meeting biological family you never knew you had?
If yes, grab yourself a copy!