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Secrets too heavy for a midwife's shoulders
The Midwife's Confession - Diane Chamberlain
Member Name: Julie449
The Midwife's Confession - Diane Chamberlain
Advantages: Great in depth read
Disadvantages: I wanted more
After reading The Lost Daughter by Diane Chamberlain, I went on the hunt for more of her novels. I came across this one 'The Midwife's Confession', I was drawn to it straight away, mostly by the title, as I thought it sounded intresting and the picture of the little baby shoes on the cover made my heart melt.
Diane Chamberlain is an American award winning author, writing adult fiction book,aimed more at the female market. Before starting out as an author Diane Chamberlaine was a psychotherapist, which I feel influences the way she writes, (that being a good thing). She also suffers from rheumatoid arthritis.
Her books come with a 'As good as Jodi Picolt or get your money back' guarantee. Although I understand why this has been put on there, as Jodi Picolt fans will be drawn to it, I feel Diane Chamberlain really is a great author in her own right now, and feel its time to let this one go.
Her books focus on all types of relationships and from the few book I have read tend to involve secrets and what happens when they come out.
The Midwife's Confession. The book is based around Noelle, Tara and Emerson. The three women have been friends from university and have a very strong friendship, which has seen them through most things. Noelle is a midwife with a unique personality and take on life. Tara has just lost her husband Sam, and is struggling with grief,and raising teenage daughter Grace. Emerson is a busy mum to teenage daughter Jenny, wife to Ted, and running a busy busines called Hot!. Emerson also has a very sick Grandfather. Teenage daughter Grace and Jenny are also the best of friends.
The book begins in present time (2010). Where we find Noelle struggling to cope and feeling as if she has a huge weight on her shoulders leading to her committing suicide. This happens very early in the book. Noelle's suicide shocks everyone. Tara and Emerson refuse to let the fact Noelle killed herself go, and while cleaning out Noelle's house they begin to search for answers.
What they find will change everything. A half written letter that was never meant to be read, leaves the two women with more questions than answers. The letter reveals a terrible secret that Noelle has been carrying around with her and keeping from everyone for years. The two friends are left wondering if they really knew Noelle at all. As they dig deeper into the truth, they keep uncovering more of Noelle's secrets. Tara and Emerson go on a journey throughout the book into Noelle's real life, and work together to uncover what really happened the day Noelle changed forever. The answers they find will not only change their lives for ever, but their families, friends and even the life of a complete stranger and her family.
The book is plit into 3 parts. Part one is split from the diferent points of view of Noelle, Emerson and Tara. Part 2 again follows the three women, but we are also introduced to Anna, who although is a stranger at this point, her story and point of view become very important as the book goes on. Part 3 follows all previous 4 woman and Grace (Tara's daughter).
Each chapter is told from one woman's point of view. For the most part the book is set in present day (2010), but some chapters jump back in to the past. This is however clearly written in italics at the start of each chapter and therefore is easy to follow.
I really enjoyed this book. I was a little worried after enjoying The Lost Daughter so much, if this would live up to what I expected, but I wasn't let down. I was hooker on this book from the start. A suicide as an opening to a book, was very unusual, dramatic and captivating. I found the book always kept me guessing, and just when I thought I could guess what was about to happen, there was another twist or bombshell to think about. This kept going throughout the book, and there is a big twist at the end that I just didn't see coming. The actual Midwife's confession comes out fairly early on in the book, and the rest of the book is more about the details and how this confession coming out effects those left to deal with it, and how they go about finding out the whole truth.
I liked how the book was based both in the present day and in the past, as it allowed me to get to know the characters and how their pasts have shaped their future, especially Noelle.
The book features so many different relationships, from friends, mothers and daughters, fathers and daughters, to even lovers. As a reader you are also let into the private moments, and the relationships that the other characters are unaware of, including Noelle's friendship with Tara's husband Sam.
Many issues and emontions are covered throughout, including death, illness and grief, adding yet another dimension to the book, and allowing readers to relate to the characters. The book is written with everyones emontions/feelings taken into consideration, and even though we may not agree with things people have done, we get to see things from their point of view, and can't help but sympathise.
I also liked how we got to know Anna as well. I enjoyed learning her back story and am glad Anna's character wasn't just brought in as background character. I feel getting to know Anna and her family really helped shape the outcome of the book.
My only real negative about the book, was that I was left wanting more. Once we have the answer and the big twist at the end, it's only briefly mention at the end about what happened next. I could have read another novel on the outcome of this alone.
Overall another great read fromDiane Cha,berlaine. A novel that keeps you guessing. I would highly recommend this book. The book is easy to read, and some of the chapters are quiet short, so you can squezze a chapter or two in even when short on time. I have since started reading another Chamberlaine novel called The Shadow Wife so keep your eyes peeled for a review on that one soon.
Summary: A novel full of secrets, twists and turns.