Diane chamberlain is often compared to Jodi Picoult (one of my all time favourite authors), even the caption on the front of the book says ‘as good as Jodi Picoult or your money back’, that right there was a set up for disaster. If as soon as you look at a front cover you see it being compared to another author you are going to judge, wanting too or not, you will after all we are only human.
As we are told in the blurb, after midwife Noelle’s devastating suicide, her two best friends Emerson and Tara try to find out the truth after this shocking suicide (which coincidently does not do the character justice at all), and instead find secrets that will change there lives forever.
Now I have to say I was not overly impressed at all with this book, after a great start (for the first few chapters I was totally hooked), my interest seemed to just fizzle out (meaning I did have to have a sneaky peak at the end because I was so bored). I am not saying all of Chamberlain’s novels have the same effect, this is the second I have read, The shadow wife was absolutely fantastic and I could not put it down as the story linked together seamlessly, something that The midwives confession is seriously lacking. Although I did enjoy the novel and the storyline could have worked perfectly, Chamberlain seems to have tried to over complicate certain parts of then novel (especially when regarding relationships and the past of the three women) or has simply gives us a tasted and left it hanging it is just so frustrating to be given a good piece of information (which annoyingly seems to happen to information we learn about Noelle all the time) and then that’s it it barely links into the story or has a weak relation.
Without giving too much away the ‘terrible secret’ (which I’m sorry but most people could work out most of the plot after a few seconds , so unlike Picoult who I am generally surprised by especially in Nineteen Minutes total shock!), is fairly obvious if you link the title and a few chapters together and the relevance of certain characters, and is also was beefed out by relationships that were’nt really that important , you could argue that it relates to real life but to me it was just boring I wanted the real story. After the blurb being about this midwife, Noelle, you would expect a lot more of the book to be focused on her and her life (maybe even letting the reader into this that the main characters would not find out, it just adds more life and knowledge to a readers perception), but it is surrounded by the snippets of information and then all the great information we find out about her life is just abandoned with a slightly unlikely scenario. Yes the ‘terrible secret’ could happen in real life, it has happened before, but the resolution seems to just be for an ending that just doesnt really happen and when the book is split into 5 narrators with loads of different problems it sort of leaves parts lacking and adds in a lot of unneeded page space that could have given us helpful information.
I’m trying to find a way of describing the rest of the book but unfortunately it would give away spoilers and I really want people to make their own judgements on how they feel about a novel and author. So I’m afraid I’m going to have to leave it too you folks!
I’m going to give it 3 stars because it’s not a bad book at all just feels a bit squashed in. As usual let me know what you think and please recommend me to people you know
The Midwife’s Confession – Diane Chamberlain published by Harlequin UK £7.99, ebook also available.
Review by Chloe Metzger