"Where does it say that you have a contract with G-d to have an easy life?"the Lubavitcher Rebbe"Failure is not the enemy of success; it is its prerequisite."Rabbi Nosson Scherman
The author Mr. Pick on defining who is a Jew shows his ignorance of real Judaism and Torah laws. That's the main reason that conversions or anything pertaining to who is a Jew must be according to strict Orthodox Halachic Laws. Everything else is a scam. Throughout the millenia, the dispersion of Jews throughout the 4 corners of the earth and forced conversions, there is hardly a place on earth where Jewish blood is not found in its population. All meaningless. As far as his interpretation that Judaism was patrineal and gives an example of Abraham as the father of many; he is completely wrong. According to Torah only Isaac was considered his son; the others are 'descendants' of his and were given gifts and sent Eastward (Indian, etc.) and according to our Sages, he had no concubines other than 'Hagar and Keturah, who was really Hagar also'. Real Jews descend from the seventy souls that went down to Egypt and the 'true' converts after are also Jewish 'souls', as Kabbalah/Zohar teaches. So having some relative who stems from Jews means nothing according to Jewsih Law.
The author is Alison Pick so I would correct Mr. to Ms. Besides that, thank you for your comments expounding upon Orthodox halachic law.