I thought the book and its concept was quite fascinating from the get-go: how one woman's cells unknowingly helped develop major scientific and medical advancements. The novel started off quite strong, exploring the background of medicine when the cells were first introduced as well as the socio-economic climate during Henrietta's life and how race factored into her medical treatment. Where the novel seems to have gone astray was the intense focus on the author's journey to obtain her information. In a way, by telling the story both through her angle as well as the family's, a lot of the information felt stale and repetitious. What this book really needed was for the editor to take a big red pen to the pages and just remove large portions -- especially from the author's backstory -- to create a more succinct novel, especially since this isn't one of those stories where you're sitting on the edge of your seat thinking about what might happen next. It's more of an slow simmer, providing moral food for thought. By the end, I did have to push myself to get through it, an unfortunate case since it started out quite strong.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks