Who's the Daddy? Review - The making of us by Lisa Jewell

OK, I promised that I would do a book review in return for the book!  Well, I couldn't really do a book review without it could I? It's taken me an age, as I really needed some time to sit down and take it seriously...and I'm so glad that I did.  Normally, I just plough through them, with no thought to the work and effort that has gone into writing, but wishing I could write as well and wondering how I could fit in the time between the shopping, cooking and cleaning, to write my best seller.. ..not a chance!!

Thought provoking in the main, Lisa Jewell's portrayal of a children alone, reuniting and  forming their own nucleus. A reality that many will face now and in the future. Lydia, Dean, Robyn and Daniel all joined in a search, to find the truth, themselves and each other. Each of them are told of the circumstances surrounding their births, and each of them have walked a separate and traumatic path to adulthood. 

The story begins with Glenys, in 1979 desperate for a child, but unable to approach her macho husband and confront him with the dilemma. With the help of his brother and in secret, Glenys visits a specialist in artificial insemination and conceives. Robyn, always has know that she was special. Dean suffered his own tragedies, but a drunken night out results in an action that he won't be able to stop and makes him realise the consequences of his actions will impact on his own future.

Fast forward to 2010. Daniel, a sperm donor has become ill and wants to know that his offspring have lived a good life; that it has all been worthwhile. Daniel has no idea how many children he may have fathered, and did not realise that it would come to this, but there is more to Daniel than just a sperm donor. Daniel has secrets, and Daniel will leave them to no one. I don't want to go too much into detail, as I don't want to give away too much and spoil the very realistic plot. Suffice to say...go and get this book!

The characters are believable, ordinary and real. We could pass them on the street each day, and have no idea of their incredible story. The coming together of brothers and sisters is very special. They have a bond, despite their different upbringings and mothers. How many children will a sperm donor, father? Who knows? 10? 20? 30? It also raises questions as to how much sperm donors, (who were generally young men who were paid a small sum) are responsible for their children,  genetics and the importance of knowing their medical and genetic background.

For many, sperm donation has been a saving grace for those unable to father a child. The years have passed since sperm donation was cloaked in mystery but unlike the past, the children of sperm donors are able to find out some information.  Like many, this will be an issue for many in the coming years. As children grow, it is important for them to understand their genetic inheritance. I would imagine, that many parents nowadays are able to be honest with their children about their conception, learning from the mistakes of the past.

In the midst of reading the book (I also read magazines as a hobby!), I came across an article about a family who had actually lived the life that Lisa Jewel predicted. The article pictures the siblings together with their donor father; explained their new relationships and how important it was for them to connect.  Their story has been filmed as a documentary "Donor Unknown" and will be released July 4th in the USA. 

I've read most of Lisa Jewels, novels, but I must say that this one surpassed my expectations. Thoughtful, provoking and very topical, Lisa Jewel sets the tone for the future for many. The perspective of children who are donor conceived. If you like Lisa Jewell, then please pop along to her facebook page.


You may have also notice I have put a "fat bar" on the side of the page.  I did plan on a diet or healthy eating, but it would mean that I have to step on the scales and I have no idea how much I weigh.  I know my clothes are far too tight...even my shoes have shrunk, so maybe I'll guess...I'll let you know when I've plucked up the courage to step on those pesky lying scales!!!

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