Sunday, February 26, 2012
Living Proof by Kira Peikoff
Dr. Arianna Drake runs a fertility clinic in Manhattan, but the success of her clinic raises suspicion at the New York Dept. of Embryo Preservation. And, Arianna's background is suspicious. When the DEP was created in 2011, her father, a scientist, declared they were "Freezing science itself," because they had outlawed the destruction of human embryos, and were stopping research in the name of religion. And, while in college, Arianna supported a biochemist who had been doing illegal research.
Now, it's Arianna's turn to come under the microscope. Gideon Dopp, a former priest, is determined to root out heretic killers. And, he needs to find someone committing illegal acts soon since the department is under scrutiny. They haven't shut down a clinic in two years. Dopp recruits one of his staff, Trent Rowe, a former investigative reporter, to try to become close to Arianna and earn her trust. He's convinced she's up to something illegal, and Trent might be able to worm it out of her.
Dr. Arianna Drake does have a secret, but so does Trent Rowe. He's suffering from a crisis of faith. Despite his job and his parents' strong convictions, Rowe isn't sure the Church and the DEP are always right. And, as he learns more about Arianna, he fears he might have encountered the bravest woman he ever met.
The mix of medicine, science, politics and religion will make this a controversial book. Peikoff could touch off a powder keg with her "what-ifs." At the same time, though, she has written a love story, a story of two people meeting across the chasm of opposing viewpoints. What if Trent Rowe can succeed by bringing down a doctor practicing illegal medicine? What if Dr. Arianna Drake can convince a DEP agent that science is more important than religious belief? The two protagonists are dealing with life and death and even love at a time when religious fanatics are allowed to carry guns into fertility clinics, and scientists are under microscopes. Living Proof is a startling, perceptive debut that examines repercussions for the future if emotion is allowed to trump knowledge.
Kira Peikoff's website is www.kirapeikoff.com
Living Proof by Kira Peikoff. Tom Doherty Associates. 2012. ISBN 9780765329301 (hardcover), 368p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.