Skip to main content
US Macmillan Tradebooks for Courses

Mercies in Disguise

A Story of Hope, a Family's Genetic Destiny, and the Science That Rescued Them

Gina Kolata

St. Martin's Griffin

Mercies in Disguise Download image

ISBN10: 1250064449
ISBN13: 9781250064448

Trade Paperback

272 Pages

$16.99

CA$22.50

Request Desk Copy
Request Exam Copy

TRADE BOOKS FOR COURSES NEWSLETTER

Sign up to receive information about new books, author events, and special offers.

Sign up now

New York Times science reporter Gina Kolata follows a family through genetic illness and one courageous daughter who decides her fate shall no longer be decided by a genetic flaw.

In Mercies in Disguise, acclaimed New York Times science reporter and bestselling author Gina Kolata tells the story of the Baxleys, an almost archetypal family in a small town in South Carolina. A proud and determined clan, many of them doctors, they are struck one by one with an inscrutable illness. They finally discover the cause of the disease after a remarkable sequence of events that many saw as providential. Meanwhile, science, progressing for a half a century along a parallel track, had handed the Baxleys a resolution—not a cure, but a blood test that would reveal who had the gene for the disease and who did not. And science would offer another dilemma—fertility specialists had created a way to spare the children through an expensive process.

A work of narrative nonfiction, Mercies in Disguise is the story of a family that took matters into its own hands when the medical world abandoned them. It’s a story of a family that had to deal with unspeakable tragedy and yet did not allow it to tear them apart. And it is the story of a young woman—Amanda Baxley—who faced the future head on, determined to find a way to disrupt her family’s destiny.

Reviews

Praise for Mercies in Disguise

"[Kolata's] book recalls two other classic tales of medical anthropology, Rebecca Skloot’s The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and Anne Fadiman’s The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down . . . a moving, suspenseful page-turner that's likely to become a classic of medical storytelling.”The Washington Post

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Gina Kolata

GINA KOLATA (M.A.) is a writer and medical reporter for The New York Times. She has written several books and edited multiple collections of popular science writing. Ms. Kolata lives with her husband in Princeton, New Jersey.

Andrew Brucker

Gina Kolata

Official Links