Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Author: Chandra Hoffman
ISBN: 9780061974311
Publisher: HarperCollins
Source: TLC Book Tours
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Rating: Recommended Read

About the Book:

It all begins with a fantasy . . .
caseworker in her “paperwork-signing” suit alongside beaming parents cradling their adopted newborn: this is the blissful picture that keeps Chloe Pinter, director of Portland’s Chosen Child domestic adoption program, happy as she juggles the demands of her boss and the incessant needs of adoptive and biological parents.
But the dream job that offers Chloe refuge from her turbulent personal life soon becomes a nightmare involving three very different couples: the college sweethearts who, after suffering fertility problems, are now expecting their own baby; the wealthy husband and desperate wife for whom adoption is a last chance; and the couple who has nothing—except the baby everyone wants. But when a child goes missing, perceptions of family and future are challenged, posing the questions: What happens when you get what you thought you wanted? How far would you go if it wasn’t what you wanted after all?

My Thoughts:
Wow, if the synopsis doesn't catch you what will?  This book is riveting and somewhat haunting. I can't imagine going through the nightmare that Chloe and the couples involved do.  This book gives awareness to the trials of infertility, the difficulty of giving your child up for adoption and the fears all adoptive parents face plus some. If your looking for a climatic page turner, this one is for you.
Having said that, I wish the evident would have taken place earlier in this book.  The reader is told in the synopsis as well as multiple times in the beginning of the book that a child goes missing, though you're not aware who has done what, how the child goes missing or what happened.  While the story builds, tension becomes tighter and I was left to keep turning the pages in hopes of getting to the climatic part of the story.  When it finally happens I wasn't shocked but kind of relieved.  If the child went missing earlier in the novel and then back story was given or information was revealed I would have enjoyed this one more.  While it is not a huge issue, it did throw me.  I kept waiting for something to happen and wondered when the child would go missing, whose would be missing and why.
The characters are well developed, dramatic and realistic.  I loved that Chloe was optimistically naive.  She is a character who feels her job is perfect because she unites unwanted babies with loving and devoted parents who want nothing else but a child.  Unfortunately, Chloe doesn't realize the dramatic pain and hurt that happens right in front of her. Chloe gains insight as the book progresses and starts to realize that its not easy, emotionally, for a birth mom to give up her child.  I feel like a lot of people would see the job of an adoption case worker in this light if they weren't paying attention to the whole picture.  Each couple in this novel brings something different to the table.  The emotional heartache and excitement for each was compelling.  
Overall, this book was a good read.  Though I wished some elements were introduced earlier in the novel, I was never bored reading this. Ms. Hoffman has her own unique writing style and tells her story in an engaging manner.  The novel has plenty of story and switches between characters, giving a well rounded understanding of the whole scenario. Chosen is a well written, engaging and emotional novel that keeps you reading.  I loved how informative and well portrayed the adoption process is in this book.  I know couples who have adopted and are adopting, this novel fits the trials and joys of adoption well.
About the Author:

Chandra Hoffman has been an orphanage relief worker in Romania, a horse trainer in the Caribbean, a short order cook in a third world hospital, the director of a U.S. adoption program, and an event planner for Philadelphia’s Main Line elite. A graduate of Cornell University and Antioch’s MFA program, she has settled back in her hometown outside of Philadelphia with her husband, three young children, and an ever-changing menagerie. Chosen is her first novel.
Visit Chandra at her website,www.chandrahoffman.com, and follow her onFacebook and Twitter at @chandraKhoffman.

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