It's All Relative by A. J. Jacobs
Adventures Up and Down the World’s Family Tree

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Over all it sounds as if the reunion may have suffered a little from the same improvisational amorphousness with which your 81st cousin who-knows-how-many-times removed, A.J. Jacobs, has written this book.
-NY Times

Synopsis

New York Times bestselling author of The Know-It-All and The Year of Living Biblically, A.J. Jacobs undergoes a hilarious, heartfelt quest to understand what constitutes family—where it begins and how far it goes—and attempts to untangle the true meaning of the “Family of Humankind.”

A.J. Jacobs has received some strange emails over the years, but this note was perhaps the strangest: “You don’t know me, but I’m your eighth cousin. And we have over 80,000 relatives of yours in our database.”

That’s enough family members to fill Madison Square Garden four times over. Who are these people, A.J. wondered, and how do I find them? So began Jacobs’s three-year adventure to help build the biggest family tree in history.

Jacobs’s journey would take him to all seven continents. He drank beer with a US president, found himself singing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and unearthed genetic links to Hollywood actresses and real-life scoundrels. After all, we can choose our friends, but not our family.

“Whether he’s posing as a celebrity, outsourcing his chores, or adhering strictly to the Bible, we love reading about the wacky lifestyle experiments of author A.J. Jacobs” (Entertainment Weekly). Now Jacobs upends, in ways both meaningful and hilarious, our understanding of genetics and genealogy, tradition and tribalism, identity and connection. It’s All Relative is a fascinating look at the bonds that connect us all.
 

About A. J. Jacobs

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Published November 7, 2017 by Simon & Schuster. 352 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference, Humor & Entertainment, Parenting & Relationships. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for It's All Relative
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

Star Tribune

Above average
Reviewed by SCOTT F. PARKER on Dec 22 2017

For all the fun Jacobs has in his excursions into his family’s ancestry, Mormon genealogical archives, DNA testing, the evolution of our species and dozens of other related topics, his project is a serious one.

Read Full Review of It's All Relative: Adventures... | See more reviews from Star Tribune

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Daniel Menaker on Dec 01 2017

Over all it sounds as if the reunion may have suffered a little from the same improvisational amorphousness with which your 81st cousin who-knows-how-many-times removed, A.J. Jacobs, has written this book.

Read Full Review of It's All Relative: Adventures... | See more reviews from NY Times

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