The Midwife’s Confession was the first Diane Chamberlain book I read (even though I’ve read others since then.) I absolutely loved it, couldn’t put it down, and it made me a Chamberlain fan for life.
In this book you’ll meet four women: Tara, Emerson, Noelle, and Anna; Noelle only for the briefest minutes before she commits suicide. The remainder of the book covers her best friends’ attempts to come to terms with, if not explain, why their stable and happy friend would take her own life. As they uncover potential reasons, they realize they never really knew Noelle at all, and at times I’m sure they wish they never started hunting through her deepest secrets.
I don’t want to give away too much of the plot lest I ruin it for you. I suspect you’ll love all four of these women just as I did, in spite of or maybe because of their faults. They’re “real” people suffering through a very trying situation, and you’re bound to relate to at least some of their struggles, whether it’s Tara’s inability to reach her teenage daughter, Noelle’s secret-keeping and grief, or Emerson’s desire to be liked. The outcome, while satisfying, will stay with me as I continue to evaluate how I would handle similar life circumstances.
Each chapter in the book is narrated by one of the central characters. Diane Chamberlain has written a very interesting blog on this writing style, where she summarizes the challenges of keeping the various characters straight in readers’ minds, particularly because they are similar in certain ways. Her ultimate goal, to ensure the reader knows who is narrating without looking back at the chapter heading, was definitely achieved. Almost immediately I could tell who was “talking.” That takes talent. [Read Ms. Chamberlain’s blog here.]
Bottom line, I love Diane Chamberlain’s books and can’t wait to read more.
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