Patricia Mullin wrote to me having seen that I'd read her first novel last year Gene Genie and wondering where she might find the review on here. In fact there wasn't one because it was pre-blog reading but in actual fact there was one buried in my laptop. I'd read this thanks to a proof copy from my local library that I had been asked to review for them.
For Patricia's benefit and for those who might want to read the book when you see the subject, here's that review
Gene Genie The Stone Press 2005
Michael Barton, ex GP and now succesful MP and Cabinet Minister for the Family but with aspirations for the top job in Health, happily married with two children suddenly finds himself in the midst of an embarrassing real life nightmare.
As a young and impoverished medical student, thrice weekly, well paid sperm donation had seemed the ideal way to pay his way through medical school and cover his gambling debts. How unfortunate that just as he is deciding how he will vote on the stem cell research bill in Parliament, one of the by-products of his money spinning venture catches up with him in the shape of his look-alike son Nigel, now aged 30. Even worse for Michael and his devoutly Catholic wife Julia is the slowly dawning realisation that there could easily be hundreds more.
The ensuing scandal is mapped out in detail and we can only assume that as the author is the sister of a serving MP and another gets a mention in the credits that much of the description of the government handling of the "spermgate" affair is an accurate description of just how sleaze is handled from within a parliamentary party. That was quite a revelation and my heartfelt sympathies to the wife and children but not necessarily the culprit in any future scandal I read about.
This book settled down into a good page turning read and although there were few surprises in store Patricia Mullin raises plenty of questions in the reader's mind about a variety of issues surrounding the days of unregulated sperm donation, not least in this reader's mind, what are the chances of inter-marriage?