FICTION

The DNA of You and Me

Harper. Mar. 2019. 256p. ISBN 9780062857811. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062857835. F
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OrangeReviewStarDEBUT Rothman's first novel is a powerful one. As DNA is weaved into a new person via chromosomes from parents, so sequences of events connect and in some cases are dependent on one another for existence, yet the linear course in which these sequences express may irrevocably lock out all other options. Emily and Aeden both come to Justin McKinnon's lab for breakthrough research to catapult their careers; in this process, they grapple with regret, jealousy, sleeplessness, and dignity. Seemingly random yet interconnected circumstances arrive with Emily on the cusp of a breakthrough, and Aeden makes an incredible and irrevocable choice. What he has done for Emily forces her to juxtapose her life's trajectory as a scientist with a breakthrough or not in a decision that leaves little room to blend the possible nuances and combinations of her life's trajectory together. Though we come and go in one another's lives, at various points we are each altered from every meeting.
VERDICT Great for readers who would enjoy a surprisingly literary love story set against the clinical, sterile, and cutthroat environment of an academic research lab. [See Prepub Alert, 9/24/18.]

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