A human embryo is allowed to preview the world before deciding whether to be born. The embryo, named Prospect, is given a starter kit of human knowledge, and his consciousness is inserted into a synthetic twenty-year-old body. To help him make up his mind, he will meet a range of people. Among them, a greeting card writer who excels at sympathy cards, and Prospect’s very own inscrutable parents. Trish Mesmer is the scientist charged with counseling Prospect, though she has more hidden agendas than a centipede has legs. At the same time, Trevor Grueling grows increasingly committed to derailing the bio-experiment all together. This cautionary tale is served up with equal helpings of whimsy and dread, with just a dash of hope.
In the 2008 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards, the book was selected by Penguin editors as one of the top ten books out of five thousand.