Posted by : Deborah Takahashi Sunday, April 24, 2011

Plot Summary:
It has been sixteen months since Jenna Fox has been able to move on with her life. After waking up from a year long coma, she has been slowly trying to recover her memories. With a stack of DVD's, she is determined to remember everything. However, things are not the same as before. The last thing Jenna remembers is living in Boston and spending time with her best friends, Cara and Locke, and how happy she was. Now, she lives in California with her mother and grandmother while her father remains in Boston. Her mother is beyond overprotective and her grandmother practically despises her. Moreover, he father is very secretive and is a little too certain that Jenna will make a full recovery. As her memories continue to come back, Jenna is waiting to live her life, but how can she when she is not allowed to eat the food she likes, attend public high school, and isn't allowed outside her home. When she is able to attend a small charter school, she meets other teens who have problems like she does, but what sets her apart from her new friends is her own body. When Jenna makes a gruesome discovery about the accident and how she was able to survive, her whole world comes crashing down because her very existence will not only threaten her own freedom, but the freedom of everyone she cares about. Readers will be stunned when they find out what happened to Jenna and what the future will hold for her.

Critical Evaluation:
The Adoration of Jenna Fox is a compelling story of a young girl who's life is altered by an accident and her parents' decision to keep her alive. There is a great discussion on bioethics and what it means to be human. Readers will not only be intrigued by the story, they will have a hard time loving or hating the characters. Given the fact that this story is based on some very complex issues such as nanotechnology and biotechnology, readers will find themselves struggling with their stance on these ideas and how it can help people regain their lives and living a long time. However, we all have to realize at what cost do we pay for playing the role of God. More importantly, we need to realize that with any kind of experimentation, the ones who are being experimented on need to give consent.  Despite all of the dangers and the conflict, this story does provide a sense of hope that with time, and acceptance, things can change where people like Jenna can live a prosperous life free from condemnation and ridicule. There is a great discussion on what it means to be human and who, or what decides, humanity really is. The audiobook version of this story provides readers with a brief phone interview with the author and why she wrote this book, which reveals a lot of the complex issues of this story and how she, personally, struggled with these issues. Lastly, the narrator does an amazing job that this story will resonate with readers for a long, long time. Brilliant, brilliant book.  

Information about the Author:
Born in 1955, Mary E. Pearson, a native Californian, decided that she was going to be an author at the ripe age of seven-years-old. Her love for writing stemmed from her second grade teacher who could really tell a story. All through elementary school, her teachers had praised her for her writing and she continued to write all the way through high school. What most people don't know about Pearson is that she absolutely loved to dress up and take on the identity of her favorite storybook character, which has helped immensely with her writing. After graduating high school, she went onto to Cal State Long Beach where she earned her BFA in Art where she spent a few years working as an artist. After giving birth to her children, she went back to school, San Diego State, to get her teaching credential and taught various grades. According to Pearson:

 "I went on to teach many different grades but it was my second grade students who pushed me back into writing. During Writing Workshop I would sit with them and write, loving the process, loving the stories, and lo and behold deciding I would love to return to my first love. That's a whole lot of lovin' going on and luckily for me I was able to do just that"(para. 5). Pearson currently lives in San Diego where she writes full time and has written five young adult novels.

Teen Sci Fi

Reading Level/Interest:
Grades 9 & up

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Awards & Recognition:
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Deborah Takahashi
Pasadena, CA, United States
My name is Deb and I am a Librarian who absolutely loves to read and recommend books to teen and tween readers. In this blog, you will find reviews on a variety resources ranging from books, movies, video games, and much more. Please feel free to leave any feedback, especially book recommendations!
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