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Formats
Paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1-64718-608-1
  • 247 pages
  • $16.99
Ebook Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1-64718-609-8
  • 247 pages
  • $9.99
Leeanne Hay
Author
NPE* A STORY GUIDE FOR UNEXPECTED DNA DISCOVERIES

Adult; Self-Help; (Market)

Finding out that the man you call ‘Dad’ is not your biological father from a consumer DNA test (a non-paternity event*) can have a devastating impact. This story guide is for every NPE*, their loved ones, and genealogists who uncover NPEs in their own family tree. Each chapter provides relatable insights, resources, and support to overcoming an identity loss.
Reviews
An NPE, or “non-paternity event,”is, in journalist Hay’s definition, “the genetic genealogy term for a break in the hereditary familial line and name” and also an acronym applicable to anyone who who discovers “through DNA testing that the man listed on their birth certificate (often known as ‘Dad’) is not their biological father.” In this “Story Guide,” Hay offers people who have turned up a surprising truth about their own paternity encouraging support in the form of real-life stories, new insights, and above all a sense of common cause. “Like most NPEs, I at first assumed that my situation was ‘unusual.’ I did not expect to find thousands of others like me,” she writes.

Hay’s book is rooted in ample research into this pressing but under-discussed topic as well as her own experience as an NPE herself, someone whose “anger and feelings of helplessness were sometimes overwhelming.” She expects that readers reeling from similar discoveries of their own might be facing similar emotions (a chapter studying portrayals of the NPE experience “in fact and fiction” is titled “When Are You Going to Get Over This?”) A journalist by training, Hay busts myths and common assumptions about NPEs, especially the belief that “only one type of occurrence creates an NPE (an adult consensual encounter) with only one outcome of suitable reaction to an NPE (detached tolerance).” From her research, and the many real-life NPEs she meets, she introduces a host of scenarios and responses, some wrenching, as in the case of NPEs who are coerced by their families to keep their discovery secret.

A hybrid of journalistic investigation, personal memoir, and highly focused source of advice and comfort, Hay’s NPE will resonate with its intended audience, which includes people who know an NPE but aren’t one themselves. Occasional awkward phrasing and a tendency to quote at length make the book at times less inviting than it might have been, but throughout Hay proves an effective journalist and coach.

Takeaway: A skilled journalist offers facts and encouragement to people who have discovered surprises about their biological fathers through DNA testing.

Great for fans of: Libby Copeland’s The Lost Family, Stephen F. Anderson’s A Broken Tree: How DNA Exposed a Family's Secrets

Production grades
Cover: A
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: B
Marketing copy: B+

Formats
Paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1-64718-608-1
  • 247 pages
  • $16.99
Ebook Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1-64718-609-8
  • 247 pages
  • $9.99

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