On one hand, the life of Henrietta Lacks is truly an interesting one with consequences far deeper than I could...moreI didn't really enjoy reading this book.
On one hand, the life of Henrietta Lacks is truly an interesting one with consequences far deeper than I could ever have imagined...when I first heard about HeLa cells I was just like "so what? good for research, yay?", but this story made me think twice about that. More importantly, it made me realize that HeLa was actually from another breathing, living woman who eventually died.
On the other hand, it's a tragedy that the current Lacks family is not getting any sort of benefit from the use of HeLa cells everywhere, but it's not (off the top of my head) like 200 pages worth of relevant or interesting, where the remainder of the book is part what we know of Henrietta's story and part relevant stories from the family. This becomes problematic especially towards the last third or so, where the story seems to be a lot more about Deborah than it is about anything or anyone else. I understood the frustration, misery, and fright that Deborah was experiencing early on. I don't need it hammered in repeatedly. I think this weaving of two tales could have been done better and in a way that minimizes all the repetition, which almost ruined the book and almost made me quit reading.
If there was a little more about HeLa and similar, and maybe something more to the discussion about tissue rights, etc., even in a shorter book, I think I would have enjoyed it more. I know part of the issue is that there's a lack of information dating back then, but that doesn't excuse filling up the rest of the book with Deborah in excess.(less)
All the stories tie up the loose ends from the other books in the Black Jewels series, such as how Lucivar met...more**spoiler alert** This book is pure win!
All the stories tie up the loose ends from the other books in the Black Jewels series, such as how Lucivar met Marian and how the whole Blood/Jewel thing started in the first place....something I always felt was missing, a little annoying, and almost tempted me into reading this book before finishing the first 3-4 books (I'm glad I didn't...don't...it'll make no sense otherwise).
The other half of why Dreams Made Flesh makes me so happy is that due to the shorter format, it gets rid of all of the introductory/repetitive/sappy aspects of the other Black Jewels books that I'm unfortunately finding rampant in Tangled Webs and all the previous books - you know what I mean...explaining some things repetitively, the "OMG It's Jaenelle!" behavior from everyone that isn't her First Circle, referring to Saetan as the High Lord (except as necessary as a threat or something) as if we didn't already know, the fact that Marian is a hearth witch, Kaelas being an 800lb cat... the list goes on and on and on. It's like the only failing I see in Anne Bishop's writing. What are the odds someone who has NEVER read any of the Black Jewels series will pick up a book in the middle of the series and expect everything to make total sense? We don't need an explanation for every other mention of a character that isn't Daemon, Lucivar, Saetan or Jaenelle. (Even then...).
I'm going to cross my fingers and hope that there will be more like this in the future.(less)