"With journalistic flair, Cracked Open: Liberty, Fertility, and the Pursuit of High-Tech Babies shines a light on the experiences of infertile couples within an industry that, in Zoll's experience, offers inflated hope to desperate would-be parents" The memoir...will empower couples with information and insight about assisted reproductive technology in their quest to become parents. Zoll tells this story as an authority and with brutal honesty- no doubt a conversation starter."
In a finely honed narrative of her personal journey, from grandparents to fertility specialists 'peddling hope,' award-winning writer Zoll examines news stories of exceptions, women pregnant after fifty, and paints the faces behind real statistics. She, too, starts with the idea that she has 'invincible eggs, as she takes readers on a winding, five year path of hormone injections, in vitro fertilization, donor eggs,' and adoption. Speaking frankly of her depression and the debilitating strain her and husband Michael's quest for fertility put on their marriage, Zoll implicates her readers in the 'push-me, pull-me.' She states that she feels 'reduced to [her] own baby-making capacity, ' a common theme with other couples encountered in the book. Zoll has clearly done her research, both for the book and for her personal journey, but it's her craft not the statistics and study citations that make this a compelling narrative. 'Hope,' as Zoll states, 'is a multi-billion dollar business.' Over years, months, tens of thousands of dollars, multiple cities and houses, she joins the 'Fertility Refugees' in an adoptive parenting class. The end, 'rest assured,' will bring 'joy, chaos, and exhaustion.'