My Sister's Keeper
A NovelLarge Print - 2004
Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate -- a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister -- and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves.
My Sister's Keeper examines what it means to be a good parent, a good sister, a good person. Is it morally correct to do whatever it takes to save a child's life, even if that means infringing upon the rights of another? Is it worth trying to discover who you really are, if that quest makes you like yourself less? Should you follow your own heart, or let others lead you? Once again, in My Sister's Keeper, Jodi Picoult tackles a controversial real-life subject with grace, wisdom, and sensitivity.
From the critics
Age SuitabilityAdd Age Suitability
magicbookworm113 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over
QuotesAdd a Quote
"there should be a statute of limitation on grief. A rule book that says it is all right to wake up crying,but only for a month."
" I was born for a very specific purpose. I wasn't the result of a cheap bottle of wine or a full moon or the heat of the moment. I was born because a scientist managed to hook up my mother's eggs and my father's sperm to create a specific combination of precious genetic material....they chose little embryonic me, specifically, because I could save my sister, Kate."-Anna
"Either this girl loses her sister, I think, or she's going to lose herself."
“I learn from my own daughter that you don’t have to be awake to cry.”
“I wondered what happened when you offered yourself to someone, and they opened you, only to discover you were not the gift they expected and they had to smile and nod and say thank you all the same.”
“Let me tell you this: if you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you, it's not because they enjoy solitude. It's because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people continue to disappoint them.”
"If you have a sister and she dies, do you stop saying you have one? Or are you always a sister, even when the other half of the equation is gone?" p138
SummaryAdd a Summary
Anna was concieved through IVF as a genetic match to her sister Kate, who was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia at the age of 2. Initially only Anna's cord blood is donated, but as Kate's disease progresses and changes, Anna's parents have her donate blood and marrow several times. When Anna is 13 and Kate is 16, Kate's kidneys fail. The girls' parents expect Anna to donate a kidney to save Kate's life, as a transplant is Kate's only hope for survival. Anna hires a lawyer, Campbell Alexander, to help her become medically emancipated from her parents. This book follows the course of the trial, as Anna's family tries to come to terms with the lawsuit, and explores the family's life since Kate's diagnosis and their complex relationships with each other. Anna loves her sister--but is she willing to let her die?