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“Choose Your Own Genetics” by Jacob M Appel

“Choose Your Own Genetics” by Jacob M Appel 

This story comes from the anthology “Scouting for the Reaper” put together and written by Jacob M. Appel. 

This is a story about a overweight girl, named Louise, who was trying to be called by her middle name Natalie, and had some self-esteem issues.  She is smart and comes from a good family.  Her dad is a genetics scientist and has taught her quite a bit about genetics and biology.  This comes in handy because during her freshman year of school she gets a new teacher that doesn't seem to know as much about it as she does, but is still her teacher.  Then during a class experiment she finds out something that she didn't want to know and her parents didn't want her to know. 

The teacher setup a lab for the students to test their blood and find out what blood type they were.  They had to find out what their parents blood type was and then run tests on their own blood.  During the process of doing this experiment Louise found out that she had type-B blood.  Now this wasn't anything to worry about, and not rare by any means, but what it did mean made her sick to her stomach.  There was no way her father, a type-A blood, and her mother, a type-O blood, could have a child with type-B.  

She ends up telling her dad about this little lab experiment they did at school and what she had found out.  Her father ended up losing a little of his composure, but assured her that it was all just a mistake and probably had contaminated samples.  She could almost believe him if she hadn't run the test several times.  She also might of believed him if she hadn't overheard her father and mother arguing about her looking like her father's brother, Jesse.   

 All the while she was going to school, and trying to deal with what the blood test could mean she was trying to get the attention of a popular boy in school, Jonah, she had a crush on.  She felt that she loved him and if only he gave her a chance she could show him what he was missing.  Typical high school love.  In high school every girl and guy would die for each other because they love each other so much.  Yet none of them actually knows what love means, and how could they at that age?  She sets out to try and get close to him throughout the story.   

Louise concocts a plan to "trap" Jonah.  She want to show him who she really is and how good she can be for him.  She decides that if she were to go out to him one night while he was drinking and have sex with him she might be able to get pregnant.  Then she would have his baby and he would be forced to be with Louise and see how good she could be for him. 

This story really takes you through an emotional roller coaster of a girl with a lack of self-esteem and a crush on someone who seems outside her reach.  On top of already feeling like an outsider to the world, and to her classmates, she finds out that her mom cheated with her father's brother.  That just puts the cherry on top.  She ends up getting closer to Jonah towards the end of the story, but she doesn't think anything through.  She has on rose colored lenses just wants to escape from the way she is feeling. 

The writing is great.  The story was interesting.  Defeinitely something to recommend.


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