Mary Modern By Camille DeAngelis

Lucy Morrigan, a young genetic researcher, lives with her boyfriend, Gray, and an odd collection of tenants in her crumbling family mansion. Surrounded by four generations of clothes, photographs, furniture, and other remnants of past lives, Lucy and Gray’s home life is strangely out of touch with the modern world—except for Lucy’s high-tech lab in the basement.

Frustrated by her unsuccessful attempts to attain motherhood or tenure, Lucy takes drastic measures to achieve both. Using a bloodstained scrap of an apron found in the attic, Lucy successfully clones her grandmother Mary. But rather than conjuring a new baby, Lucy brings to life a twenty-two-year-old Mary, who is confused and disoriented when she finds herself trapped in the strangest sort of déjà vu: alive in a home that is no longer her own, surrounded by reminders of a life she has already lived but doesn’t remember.

A remarkable debut novel, Mary Modern turns an unflinching eye on the joyous, heartbreaking, and utterly unexpected consequences of human desire.

From the Hardcover edition. Mary Modern

Well done! I was intrigued by the premise of the novel, and not sure what to expect from other reviews. But I was very satisfied. The book tackles not only biology and ethical issues, but politics, history, family, belonging, and the list goes on. It could be construed as a mishmash of styles and tones, but I found the mixture to be brilliantly and carefully executed. There are parts that could be slightly horror-style (see the comparisons to Frankenstein); some are distinctly quirky and just an odd twist on reality -- surreal, in fact. Some passages are straightforward in their analysis of human nature and feelings. I saw what I might term the main twist coming, but I was still very curious as to how it happened. I love books and movies that get me thinking about logistics -- puzzling through the plot. This one did it. It all fits and leads to an interesting conclusion. Thought-provoking on many levels, and just a satisfying page-turner.

Read my full review, including a rating for content, at 0307352587 If you are put off by science fiction, that is not what this book is about. Its premise is only a device for view how we relate to others and what changes when we are out of our conventional frame of reference. 0307352587 This will have spoilers in it, so read to something else if you do not want to know,trust me you DO want to read and be surprised.
This is not my normal read! It came highly recommended. After seeing some of the reviews,I was sure i would hate it and give up. Not so! This is a most unique and interesting read! It is not a page turner,but it had me reading very late into the night, every night. Very creative, a bit gothic, a bit sci-fi, creepy.Romance supposedly. I wanted Gray to leave Lucy,throughout the book, she did not deserve him. His character is the best in this book,in my opinion. I loved the relationship between Mary and Gray,tho! I do wish Mary and Lucy had more of a familial relationship,but it became obvious why they didn't, at the end of the book.Theirs was just a business' relationship for obvious reasons.There were some parts that seemed a little incredulous - she seemed to take to the computer without any hesitation or issues. Impossible but so was Mary,herself. I also felt it ludicrous that fake documents from a SSI employee were so easily had for 2 people that did not exist.This book was confusing and frustrating at times. There were many details & times to keep track of, as well as suggestive comments. The one thing I disliked was the jumps in times from section to section in one chapter. Concentration was necessary for the ancestral and DNA aspect. Didn't need the time jumps to make it more confusing. All in all a MOST unique and creative read. Not my usual genre or interests,but well worth my time and late nights reading>I cannot remember the last time I stayed up late with a book.I really did not expect to like this book at all. I do recommend it,even if it is not your normal read,there is nothing normal abt this book! Well written aside from the time jumps.I am a genealogist and this book intrigued me.Some of us think what if it were possible to bring an ancestor back to this day and age. I can now say,not a good idea if it were possible for those of us that are not scientifically inclined. 0307352587 This book is quite bizarre. It's also surprising, suspenseful, enchanting, and entertaining. It's really hard to categorize, but it definitely has some science fiction elements with a little love thrown in for good measure.

My only complaint: Deangelis breaks up the story into short one page chapters that start with a time and place. This is rather annoying because the story doesn't really flow all that well, but I guess that's the appeal. All of the chunks eventually piece together to form an unusual story about the repercussions of cloning. 0307352587 I enjoyed this tale that was part historical fiction, part scifi, part contemporary novel. The writing is simple but effective. The novel is centered around Lucy Morrigan, a scientific researcher at her local North Eastern US University. Lucy follows a long line of scientists in her family, the secrets of which are hinted throughout but confirmed at the end of the book. Lucy makes a crazy decision to clone her grandmother to be her child when after many failed attempts she can't become pregnant. Unfortunately, it doesn't work out the way she wanted - I don't want to include spoilers - and her actions cause a snowball of legal, moral, historical and personal problems.

There were a couple of parts I found were a bit far fetched and I started to think, oh boy here we go, the story is going south. But it didn't, they were a mere blip. Camille DeAngelis alters the rules of genetic cloning for the purpose of her story, but in the afterword she explains her reasoning and explains the reality of cloning.

I was intrigued by how and why Camille created her novel; based on a photo of her great grandparents and how she would love to clone them so she could meet them. Cloning is a controversial topic in our time, and it isn't going away. Although demonized for being used for the production of designer babies. However, it can also be used to cure diseases and save lives. Regardless of where you stand on the subject, Mary Modern is an interesting book that I was still thinking of several days after I finished. 0307352587


my emotional development stopped at the tell me a story phase, and that's all i expect from a book. i don't need it to change my life, i don't need it to answer every one of my questions, i don't need it to teach me about any historical atrocity.

this is not a perfect book, but it is a deeply entertaining book. it's true that the characters are largely unlikable, but that's also true of Wuthering Heights and Jude the Obscure, two of my all-time favorites. if it's the idea of cloning that is upsetting the more delicately religious/political folks, just power through - pretend it's like a unicorn in a fantasy novel or the spontaneous combustion in Bleak House - it is something that is happening just to drive plot - it isn't reeeeealll!! it is just genuine fun in the vein of liz jensen or when jonathan coe is being funny.


come to my blog! 0307352587 The only thing I liked in this book was the description of the house the characters lived in. Otherwise I thought they were all unlikeable and found their relationships, feelings, posited intellectual brilliance etc completely unbelievable. 0307352587 I wanted to love this book. The concept was great - a biologist who can't conceive clones her grandmother, who suddenly turns into a 20 year old woman with vague memories of who she was.
Then I started reading. The book is written in present tense. And is completely non-sequitor. Conversations don't flow naturally, and when they do, I have no idea what they're talking about. The author obviously knows a lot about art history and history in general, but since none of it was actually relevant to the story, parts felt more like a lecture between two people that are far smarter than me than a conversation between two lovers. Rather than being drawn in, I just felt really dumb.
I stuck with it for a while, hoping that I would get used to her style, but then events that would normally be considered plot were just tossed in as gossip from random characters, and I gave up. I tossed it onto the backseat of the car and decided to just enjoy the 5 hour drive back to Maryland rather than force myself to work through this book. 0307352587 I had to do something that I hate and that is to abandon a book half way through. I just could not get on with this one at all. The story was an excellent concept and it had potential to be really entertaining but for me it just didn’t seem to be credible enough.

I think because we are actually so near managing to clone the human body it is no longer in realms of science fiction. There is maybe some mad scientist out there who is illegally doing so at this very moment so that half of the story is not all that farfetched. The other half however is too way out to make any sense, the items hidden away in the basement that belonged to Lucy’s father and grandfather are antiquated and almost silly in their antiquity and come far too close to Frankenstein’s laboratory to be plausible in this century. I found the idea of the whole pregnancy a little bit gross.

It is probably due to my limited imagination that I find it impossible to go with this idea but I was just not enjoying the book and had to give it up.
0307352587 This is really like one and a half star -worthy. The premise was so interesting: a biogenetic researcher who finds out she can't have children clones her own grandmother from blood she finds on an apron in the house her family has lived in for four generations. The grandmother is born at age 22, with all her memories intact up to that time.

But the plot gets convoluted, and the characters become whiny and annoying at best. The choppy writing and constant moving through time leaves the reader confused. This book did not live up to its promise 0307352587