Jodi Picoult, the famous American author, wrote a great number of touching, sensitive, heartbreaking books. Being a mother of seriously ill child, she expressed her suffer, love, patience, courage, and tenderness in all her brilliant compositions. However, among Jodi Picoult’s wonderful books there is one simply outstanding one, for which the author has received numerous literature awards. It is “My Sister’s Keeper”. Let us look at the main ideas from this bestseller.
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The plot of the book reveals the story of the Fitzgerald family – mother Sara, father Brian and three children, Jessie, Kate (16), and Anna (13). Kate has a serious disease – at the age of 2, she was diagnosed leukemia. As it turned out that in the context of modern biomedical technologies the tissue, fluids, and stem cells of sibling may help soundly in curing leukemia, Sara and Brian decided to take a serious step. They committed in virto fertilization in order to give birth to a daughter, Ann, which could become a source of precious material for Kate. For her entire life Ann have passed hundreds of bone marrow and blood transplantations, painful shots and operations, in order to relieve pain of her sister, which she loves very much. When it turns out that Kate needs kidney transplantation, Ann takes a serious decision – she hires a lawyer to suit her parents in court. She wants to gain medical emancipation from parents in order to be able to control her body herself. During the case, Ann is granted authority over her body. However, before she reveals whether she wants to donate her kidney to Kate, Ann is killed in a car accident. Eventually Ann’s kidney is successfully transplanted to Kate. The epilogue of the story reveals the surprising detail – it was Kate who asked Ann to suit parents, as she preferred to die than to make Ann suffer from serious kidney transplantation surgery.
The book “My Sister’s Keeper” acutely portrays the effects of modern biomedical technologies on people. The most demonstrative example is, of course, Ann, which lives in constant fear of doctors and hospitals. “…The nurses holding me down to stick me for white cells Kate might borrow; the doctor saying they didn’t get enough…, the bruises and the deep bone ache after I gave up my marrow; the shots that sparked more stem cells in me, so that there’d be extra for my sister…,” – that is what modern biotechnology meant to little girl that had to grow up quickly.
All the characters are very realistic and impressing in this book, making no place for heroes or villains. The parents, Jessie, the layer Campbell Alexander, and of course Ann are the people of very difficult destiny. However, the character that seemed closer to me is Kate. The unselfish nature of this girl, which has undergone numerous sufferings, has touched me enormously. Loving Ann more than herself, Kate is deliberately choosing to die rater than to let her sister suffer again. In her book Jodi Picoult exploits very contradictory issue of organ transplantation. Modern scientific discoveries are a subject of sound debates from ethical and moral standpoints. Although the stem-cell technology has some obvious positive effects (like a possibility to treat some serious diseases for close relatives), human body part transplantation may have serious negative impacts. One of them is the treatment of human body as a commodity, or a natural asset. In this context donor is cynically seen as a source of biological material for recipient, which contradicts the very essence of human morale. The book “My Sister’s Keeper” demonstratively depicts both positive and negative effects of biotech, combining them to make the acute though tender dramatic masterpiece. —————————————————————————–
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