Sometimes a book surprises me. Kira Peikoff’s Living Proof was not that book. It was futuristic, set in the year 2027. It was far less than I imagined.
In the book, the United States government, laws, and population have been heavily influenced by religious sentiment making the disposal of unused embryos a crime punishable by serving time in jail. Pregnant women are monitored throughout their pregnancy to ensure no harm is being brought to the fetus.
The main character, Arianna Drake, is a young fertility specialist. Based in Manhattan, her clinic spikes in popularity. Trent Blake, an undercover agent, is assigned to investigate the clinic by The New York Department of Embryo Preservation. The clinic has never failed an inspection. The story begins to take shape as the reader wonders if Blake can fulfill his assignment as he learns about Arianna and his feelings for her.
While the book seems futuristic, these are topics I hear about in the news–though, certainly not to the level explored in Living Proof. Still this book is a “what if?” posed by Peikoff as it explores a society where government and religion are intertwined.
That’s about as far as the book goes. I couldn’t connect with any of the characters. They seemed stiff and trapped on the pages, unable to make it into my imagination. As the story unfolded, I started thinking it was like Jack Bauer, totally unbelievable to the point I was saying, “Yeah, right!” The main character was bogged down with too many details, while Blake seemed to be glossed over and left without a face.
There were moments as I was reading where I felt like I was being preached to or maybe even condemned for my own views on the subject. It was 368 pages that I kept thinking were going to change direction and captivate me.
The topic was interesting, but I just couldn’t get inside the story to make it one that excited me. Of course, this is just my opinion and I don’t typically read books of this kind and maybe this is why.
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