Published: May 2021
Publisher: Little Brown
My Rating: 🦋🦋🦋🦋🦋/5
Fifty-four year old Ruth has worked hard to build the life she has. A successful TV executive, two wonderful daughters and a loving husband who is a lawyer. But her eldest daughter Lauren has suffered multiple miscarriages and failed rounds of IVF. With her last miscarriage she is told that the only option for her to have a baby would be through surrogacy. Due to all the red tape and risks of using an agency, Ruth offers to be Lauren and Dan’s surrogate. But as the pregnancy progresses, secrets start to surface and the life that Ruth has built for herself slowly starts to fall apart.
What an absolutely amazing debut novel! This book is definitely worthy of a five-star rating in my opinion. If I am thinking about a book when I’m not reading it then it must be something special.
It was creased and battled-scarred, this body, but uniquely hers.
The topics covered in this book are not simple in any way. A post-menopausal mother offering to be a surrogate for her daughter who has had multiple miscarriages and has longed for a family for such a long time that she is at a point of desperation and will do almost anything to have a baby. A mother who would do anything to help her child and to make her happy.
Ruth and Lauren never had a very close relationship like her and the younger daughter Alex, so she feels like this may help strengthen their bond. She has her own insecurities as a fifty-four-year-old woman who was also used to heads turning as she walked past and when she was younger, she starts feeling almost insignificant. Even though is a successful TV executive. She also feels like it will give her more purpose.
The topic of mother-daughter relationships is explored as well as secrets that threaten to destroy marriages. Unfortunately, tensions grow throughout the pregnancy and Lauren feels resentment toward her mother for being able to do something that she failed at so many times. Ruth also has her own secrets from her past that start to surface and she feels like everything she’s worked so hard to build is slowly falling apart.
I love Ruth as a character, she was complex and I enjoyed how we were able to get to know more about her and her past as the story progresses. Some other topics broached in this book which are not always talked openly about are fertility and infertility, contraception, abortion and the stigma attached to them.
This was brilliant psychological thriller, filled with lots of drama and suspense. It will have you turning the pages as fast as you can to see what happens next.
Disclaimer: I was sent this free copy for review by Jonathan Ball Publishers. This does not influence my review or rating in any way. All views and opinions expressed are my own.