Monday, July 11, 2016
Book Review and Giveaway: The Choices We Make
Hannah and Kate became friends in the fifth grade, when Hannah hit a boy for looking up Kate's skirt with a mirror. While they've been close as sisters ever since, Hannah can't help but feel envious of the little family Kate and her husband, David, have created—complete with two perfect little girls.
She and Ben have been trying for years to have a baby, so when they receive the news that she will likely never get pregnant, Hannah's heartbreak is overwhelming. But just as they begin to tentatively explore the other options, it's Kate's turn to do the rescuing. Not only does she offer to be Hannah's surrogate, but Kate is willing to use her own eggs to do so.
Full of renewed hope, excitement and gratitude, these two families embark on an incredible journey toward parenthood…until a devastating tragedy puts everything these women have worked toward at risk of falling apart. Poignant and refreshingly honest, The Choices We Make is a powerful tale of an incredible friendship and the risks we take to make our dreams come true. (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)
Last year, I read Karma Brown’s debut novel, Come Away with Me (reviewed here), and it instantly was added to my 2015 favorites list. So I was more than eager to read her sophomore novel and see what else she could do. By "more than eager," I mean that I read an advanced copy from Edelweiss in January! However, this book was so memorable that I’m able to write about it six months later as if I had just finished it.
Karma once again brings her talent for sympathetic characters, high levels of emotion, and realistic dialogue to The Choices We Make. She also based this novel on personal experience, which makes it that much more powerful. Her experience definitely brings Hannah to life and allows readers to know what it’s like for a woman who is experiencing infertility and the choices that go along with it in order for her to become a mother. However, she also gives Kate a voice, instead of making her a secondary character or accomplice to Hannah’s goal. She makes you ask yourself “Would I do that for my best friend?” Therefore, when the tragedy strikes, it’s hard to decide who to root for, as there are clearly sides to be taken.
The story takes on the feel of a Jodi Picoult novel once the climax is reached and readers may find themselves grappling with what they would do in the same situation. Hannah became frustrating sometimes, but I also saw her side of the story and still wanted to support her, while also being there for Kate.
There’s definitely an intense level of emotion throughout the story, and I would advise pregnant women to wait until their baby is born before reading it (or even a few months later, as I know how emotional things can get soon afterward). Overall, The Choices We Make is a beautiful testimony to both friendship and motherhood. If you’ve read Come Away with Me, you know what Karma is capable of and I’d suggest having a box of tissues nearby.
If this book gets option, here's who I think should be cast:
Hannah: Katherine Heigl
Ben: Christopher Jackson
David: Matt Oberg
Kate: Marguerite Moreau
Claire (Hannah's sister): Erika Christensen
Thanks to Mira for the book in exchange for an honest review. This is part of BookSparks' 2016 Summer Reading Challenge and they have one copy to give away!
How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Giveaway ends July 17th at midnight EST.