Yes, I was more interested in how Marina would resolve her relationship with Dr. Swenson than in what happened to Anders. And I guess “she fulfilled her duty” is one way of looking at the ending but it’s not the interesting part of the story.
The whole “Lost Horizon” feel was interesting to me–this world of eternal(ish) youth hidden away in the depths of the rain forest, at risk should it be revealed to the outside world–and I think it merited more of an ending than it received. As it turns out, Dr. Swenson has decided that women don’t need this fertility treatment and everyone, including Marina, goes along with that.
Certainly I understand this perspective (zero interest in becoming pregnant at age 73) but instead of opening that question up, the author again just shuts the door on it. Dr. Swenson decrees it and so it shall be; instead of fertility, we will have a malaria vaccine. Yet it’s not a question of one or the other.