"She's the female Nicholas Sparks." — Redbook magazine
Following her bestselling debut novel Come Away with Me, Karma Brown returns with an unforgettable story that explores the intricate dynamics of friendship and parenthood
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.
Brown's second novel (after Come Away With Me) explores the potential complexities of friendship, motherhood, and gestational surrogacy through the lens of an unusual ethical quandary. Hannah has always wanted to be a mother, but after years of trying every procedure possible, she and her husband, Ben, have had no success. Hannah's best friend, Kate, who's spent years serving as a sounding board for Hannah's woes while raising her own family, eventually offers to serve as a surrogate for Hannah and Ben. Despite initial reservations from Kate's husband, David, everyone's thrilled when she successfully becomes pregnant with a baby boy, and Hannah and Ben excitedly begin preparing for his arrival. Then tragedy strikes, and Ben and Hannah find themselves pitted against David as they balance fear and grief against a morass of ethical and medical controversies. Brown captures the pathos of infertility and Hannah's impossible situation, but all four central characters are fairly unmemorable. The resolution may bring about a few sniffles, but stronger characterization and better dialogue would have wrung more from the promising premise.
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The choices we make
Very moving and well-written novel! I couldn't put it down.