Every child of a parent with HD has a 50 percent chance of inheriting the mutated gene. The discovery of this mutation made genetic testing possible for anyone living at risk. The test definitively determines genetic status. A positive test result means the person has the mutation and will develop HD. To date, 90 percent of people at risk for HD choose not to know.
Neuroscientist and novelist, Lisa Genova educates her readers about Huntington’s Disease in this story about a father in his late 40s becoming symptomatic and then diagnosed with the neurodegenerative, and ultimately fatal, Huntington’s Disease. The story is not just about his decline, and the many losses that come with that, but also about the impact this news has on his family. His four adult children are suddenly faced with some tough life choices as their father’s diagnosis means they all have potential for the same. Genova weaves facts into some good storytelling and the result is compassionate, engaging, and thought-provoking. (I listened to this one and the reader does a good job with the sound of Boston.)