Chandra Hoffman. I was all set to say this was an awesome book, but then I got to the last 20 pages. The way the author chose to end it threw me for a little loop. The topic was certainly interesting -- infertility, adoption and what makes a family.
Chloe Pinter is a hardworking caseworker. She has the tough task of managing birth parents and adoptive families. It's something I don't think I could ever do. How do you convince someone to give up their child without coming off as insensitive? How do you reassure the adoptive families that everything will work out? To me she's a psychiatrist without the large salary. Chloe is in a relationship, but isn't sure of where it's going. And now Chloe has work her cut out for her with her latest case.
Francie and John McAdoo have been through it all, fertility treatments and a long drawn out adoption process. Their friends, Paul and Eva Nova know how they feel. The Novas were all set to adopt before the birth mother changed her mind. But with Eva ready to give birth, the Novas have a sense of security that the McAdoos don't. This baby is theirs, no one can take him away. The Novas know their is light at the end of the tunnel. But a case of mistaken identity nearly ends in disaster for them.
Francie came off as a little wackadoo!! She wants a family more than her husband. John is older and has had children, another child isn't a priority. Francie isn't missing the signs, she just doesn't want everyone else to notice -- especially Chloe. Francie has also built an entire world for herself on the adoption message boards. She's like the Queen Bee.
Penny and Jason have chosen the McAdoos for their son, but their reasoning isn't without ulterior motives. The give the baby up, but feel their has to be something more in it for them. What about money? Who is going to pull them out of poverty? Jason is an ex-con, how can he get a job? They deserve a better apartment too. In their world, the McAdoos and Chloe owe everything to Penny and Jason. The McAdoos represent everything that Penny and Jason are not. The McAdoos are intelligent, they have money, a house and a car. While Jason and Penny are left to their own demons.
This one is definitely a page-turner. If you're a new parent or you're thinking of adoption, you might want to skip this one. This book will pull at your heartstrings. It's not all sunshine and roses on both sides of the coin. Eva and Paul finally have the baby that they want, but is this what they truly want? You can get wrapped up in the dream and forget about the all the hard work that comes with it. Paul is overtaxed at home and work. He looks for an escape in the wrong direction. Eva is so tired she starts to forget things. The McAdoos have the baby, but not the sense of family that Francie was searching for. At first Penny seems like a grieving mother, but she turns evil very quickly. Jason could care less one way or the other as long as he gets some money out of the situation.
Hoffman knocks it out of the park on the high and lows of the birth/adoption process. Now, towards the end is where she lost me a little bit. Each chapter is told from the point of view of the main characters, a style that I like. But the resolution to the story is told from an anonymous character, which left me a little confused. Why take this way out? I have an idea who the character is, but perhaps I'm wrong. You have to read it to know what I'm talking about. But as a debut novel, this one is worth checking out.
Rating: Give it a try
Note: I received a copy of the book from the publisher (HarperCollins) as part of a tour with TLC Book Tours