The Dream Daughter by Diane Chamberlain
Published by St. Martin's Press on October 2nd 2018
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What would you do to save your child?
That really is the question in this book. Caroline Sears receives word that her unborn baby has a fatal heart defect. She is devastated, she has lost so much already. Her husband has gone missing and is presumed dead in Vietnam. Then one day her brother-in-law, Hunter comes to Caroline/Carly with some startling news. He believes there is a way that her unborn baby can be saved. She needs to suspend some disbelief. The reader needs to suspend some disbelief. As he explains to her how her child can be saved, some things begin to make sense and she decides to make a leap of faith!
I won’t say much more about the plot but to say, this book is about one woman’s journey to save her child and, in the process, grows as a person and learns what being a mother is all about. The reader is also given a glimpse into the progress of medical science and prenatal care. We are also shown the emotional scope of having a child with a birth defect and the struggles to keep your child healthy and the emotions (and exhaustion) of having a child with health issues. When being strong is not a choice but a necessity.
While reading this book, I felt many emotions and it was like a roller coaster ride. Would her baby receive the treatment she needs? Will the child survive? How will she make it back home? How will her sister react?
This was not my favorite book by Chamberlain, but it was enjoyable and as I stated, it does evoke emotion. Chamberlain continues to write thoughtful books which stir the emotions while dealing with real life issues. She does take a chance with time travel in this book and I appreciated that she did not get too technical with how time travel works, etc. I appreciated that she let Carly’s courage to save her baby take center stage and kept the time travel take a smaller but important role in this book. Obviously the time travel is needed but it does not overshadow the love and sacrifice in this book.
Thank you to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.
The Stolen Marriage by Diane Chamberlain
Published by St. Martin's Press on October 3rd 2017
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I’ll start by saying that I had really high hopes for this book. I really enjoyed Necessary Lies and was hoping this book would be just as good if not better. I struggled with this book. One thing I struggled with was that almost everyone is giving this book high ratings and I thought “Is it me?” but I realize that not every book is for everyone and what one person may feel that the book he/she is reading is a masterpiece, while another person may have a hard time finishing that particular book. As I mentioned I received this book in exchange for an honest review and honestly, I thought this book was okay at best.
It’s 1944 and Tess is engaged to Vincent, a man that she is engaged to and madly in love with. She can’t wait to be his wife and live happily ever after. Vincent is a doctor who is passionate about his work, when he goes to Chicago to help fight the polio epidemic. He keeps changing the date he will be coming home as he is passionate about his work. Tess naturally misses him while he is away but is also secretly upset that he keeps changing his return date.
When her best friend Gina offers to take her on a trip out of town, Tess jumps on the opportunity. This is a chance to take her mind off how much she misses Vincent and to have a little fun with her firend. When they arrive they learn they will be staying in a home with 2 other people – 2 men whom they do not know.
Too much alcohol, bad choices and poor judgement come into play. That one night changes Tess’s life forever. She abruptly ends her engagement to Vincent and informs everyone that she is getting married to Henry and moving to North Carolina. She really knows nothing about Henry, his life or his family. She is not welcomed with open arms and keeps hearing that “Henry is not the man you think he is” That would definitely get my attention.
A tragic accident occurs which further alienates Tess from Henry’s family and the town. She is unhappy, not in love and finding out that her husband has secrets. Tess who studied to be a nurse also feels as though she herself needs to help with the polio epidemic and eventually begins to help out at her local hospital where she is re-connected with someone from her past.
So I am in the minority with this book. What didn’t I like. For starters, I feel that Henry took advantage of Tess. She was in no position to give consent and the scene felt more like a rape to me. Also, if Tess knew Vincent all of her life, why did she not go to him and explain to him what happened? Could not all of this misery have been avoided? I do realize that if this happened there would not be a book but I just found that I wanted to take and shake most of the characters.
The description of the book sounded so good to me but while I was reading I found that I had to force myself at times to keep going. As I mentioned I saw so many high ratings and thought “what am I missing?” This book just was not for me. It was well written and obviously appealed to a lot of people but not so much for me. I will definitely read more from this Author as I did really enjoy Necessary Lies.
I received this book from St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.