BookBrowse Reviews The Big Door Prize by M.O. Walsh

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The Big Door Prize

by M.O. Walsh

The Big Door Prize by M.O. Walsh X
The Big Door Prize by M.O. Walsh
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2020, 384 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 31, 2021, 384 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kelly Hydrick
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The Big Door Prize has the trappings of a dystopian tale, but remains focused on the quiet intimacy of small-town lives that are upended when residents use a supermarket DNA analysis machine to reveal their true potentials.

M.O. Walsh's The Big Door Prize is a tale about destiny and free will and the lengths to which some will go in an attempt to fulfill their heart's desires. It took me a little while to get into the story, but once I did I began to approach it as a contemporary morality tale, and I was reminded of the films Gattaca (1997) and Pleasantville (1998).

In small-town Deerfield, Louisiana, residents go about their regular lives, until one day the DNAMIX machine appears next to the customer service counter at the front of the local grocery store. A "simple-looking machine" that resembles a "photo booth at the mall or parish fair," the DNAMIX, when provided with a DNA sample, prints out a blue slip of paper that does nothing less than "tell you your potential in life, what your body and mind are capable of doing, based on the science of DNA." The machine becomes a smash hit as nearly every...

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