This month I've picked up quite a few non-fiction books at the very beginning of the month. What that means is that my reading is slower. I just can't get through non-fiction with the same speed I can read fiction. But there are just so many great non-fiction books that I want to read.
The Lost Family: How DNA Testing Is Upending Who We Are by Libby Copeland is one I found fascinating and would recommend to anyone in need of a great non-fiction read.
Copeland's book focuses on the availability of DNA tests in our world and how people take them for a variety of reasons: to find out their ancestry, to look for missing relatives, sometimes just for their own curiosity. Most people don't realize or even think about the fact that the results could change their lives- but they could change the lives of their family as well. The ripple effect is in full force.
My mother-in-law is someone who used 23andMe to locate her birth mother. She knowingly bought a DNA kit with this intent. Although she found the answers she sought (along with nine biological half-siblings) the repercussions of her choice are felt by more than just her. Her half siblings had no idea their mother had a child out of wedlock. For them, this must be shocking as they discover another side to a woman who was married to the same man her entire life, but who had a child with someone else while he was serving in World War II. Copeland shares many stories about people who have had similar experiences with these DNA kits.
I found this book fascinating. The personal stories are what kept me reading, but there is information about DNA testing that is also very interesting. Technology is a wonderful thing in many ways, but Copeland does a great job of explaining the consequences of this technology.