From Library Journal
This book seeks to explore the complex moral issues raised by reproductive technology, including surrogacy, donor insemination, genetic testing, fetal surgery, and fetal tissue. Fenwick, a writer and lawyer, weaves together the stories of families whose lives have been touched by the issues, related legal decisions, and the results of a survey she conducted to assess public opinion on both the technologies themselves and how they should be regulated. Issues such as the prosecution of pregnant drug addicts are also discussed. Fenwick's background as an attorney is obvious throughout, yet she avoids unnecessary "legalese." Writing for a lay readership, Fenwick does not go into the medical details of these procedures, and for a book on such an emotional topic her voice remains somewhat detached. Her book's strength is in highlighting the complexity of the decisions and demonstrating how ethical, thinking people can come to extremely different conclusions about them.?Eris Weaver, Marin Inst. for the Prevention of Alcohol & Other Drug Problems, San Rafael, Cal.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
The godlike ability to procreate without benefit of mother and father meeting at least once in passionate (or even coolly calculated) intercourse, society's responsibility to disabled or marginally viable infants, and the ethics of surrogacy are among the issues addressed in this exploration of the consequences of making babies circa the year 2000. If reports of such futuristic reproductive technology as implanting embryos in postmenopausal women sets ``your moral compass spinning,'' then attorney Fenwick (Should the Children Pray?, not reviewed) hopes to clarify the questions about, if not the solutions to, such dilemmas. The book is organized in alternating chapters of case histories and analyses of issues ranging from whether the right to have a child is absolute to the use of fetal tissue, and the possible misuses of genetic information. Government regulation is key to many of the concerns. For instance, should a parent who is a drug user be denied the right to have or care for a child? If so, where does regulation about drugs such as heroine and cocaine slide over into regulation about wine, tobacco, and caffeine, also known to affect fetal development? How about the quandaries of surrogacy: Whose child is it? Who is responsible if the child is born defective? If the surrogate is somehow disabled by the pregnancy? Consider the costs of keeping a premature or severely handicapped baby alive for weeks or months, almost routine in neonatal units now--hundreds of thousands of dollars, which might be better spent on prenatal care for mothers. In addition to asking tough questions, Fenwick presents results of a survey that probed public feelings about such reproductive issues and came up with, not surprisingly, ambivalence and uncertainty. Few answers here, but the floor has definitely been thrown open to questions. (8 pages photos, not seen) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.