Camille DeAngelis Mary Modern Reviews

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“Mary Modern ”


written by Harriet Klausner on 04/07/2007

Mary Modern
Camille DeAngelis
Shaye Areheart (Crown), Jul 2007, $24.00
ISBN: 9780307352583

In New Halcyon, Massachusetts, twenty-eight year old biogenetic researcher Lucy Morrigan shares her family mansion with her boyfriend Gray. The house built in 1882 needs major renovation that Lucy ignores; just as she pays little attention to the rooms filled with the artifacts of the four generations of Morrigan who have lived there. In fact the only modern place in what some less kind folks would say is the Morrigan mausoleum or gentler people museum is the off limit to Gray basement that Lucy's late dad converted to a secret laboratory.

Her efforts to become pregnant the old fashion "Bonobo" way has failed as she is infertile. Thus Lucy who wants to birth the next generation turns to an apron containing dried blood from her deceased grandmother. Lucy clones her grandma and places the elixir inside her womb. However, within the first trimester, a pregnant Lucy is whale size humongous so her friend Megan, experienced via being married to an ob-gyn surgeon, performs a C-section to remove the fetus from Lucy and place it in a machine emulating a womb. Six months later, Mary is born as a twenty-two years old with a memory that ended in 1929. However, a minister hears rumors of MARY MODERN and demands the cloning of Jesus or he will bring the fires of hell (the modern day mob - righteous protesters) to Lucy's dilapidated mansion.

A sort of modernizing of Dr. Frankenstein, MARY MODERN is an entertaining thought provoking thriller that asks readers to consider the consequences of cloning famous humans. The story line is at its best when Lucy plays the role of Dr. Frankenstein competing with her creation for the affection of Gray. Mary's adjustment to seven plus decades of life is probably too easy, but no one will care as Camille DeAngelis will have her audience debating the ethical and pragmatic implications of cloning from varying perspectives.

Harriet Klausner

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