28 January 2010

Book Review: Perfect Match by Jane Moore

Joe and Karen Eastman are feeling incredibly lucky - they are happily married to each other and have just had their first child together, a little boy called Ben. But things are about to explode in a bad way when they find out their precious son has a terminal illness, and one which is only going to be curable by the creation of a "designer baby", a brother or sister who is a perfect genetic match for little Ben. But during the process, a devastating secret is revealed which is going to rock everybody involvd to their very cores... can they still save Ben and save their marriage too?

The plot certainly isn't a light one, and is going to shock you and make you count your lucky stars that your children are okay...I know that when I got to the end I couldn't help but give Harry a big hug and thank the Lord that he is such a healthy boy! But this is what I loved about the book. It is very gritty, it delves into topics most authors would avoid and Moore really gets into the heads of the characters so that all of their actions are believable and you can really sympathy for all of them at some point throughout the book.

Because the secrets are revealed periodically throughout the book, I obviously am not going to spoil them for you now in this review, as that would be stupid. But I can talk about them in a general way. I didn't see most of the twists coming at all, Moore has a great way of writing which leads you in one direction and then shocks you with a massive revelation that leaves you completely shocked about, which is quite a talent. And despite the nature of the twist, I actually felt sympathy for all of the characters and I could totally understand the plight of all of them despite the horrible circumstances they have come to be in.

The main bulk of the book focuses on Karen and Joe, and of course their sick little boy Ben, although luckily he isn't in too much of the story, I think if he was I would have been weeping for most of it! The relationship between Karen and Joe is so realistic - a couple who have been together a long time, still love each other but have sort of drifted apart somewhat. Both of these were likeable people, and the way they interacted with each other, and with their son was readable, enjoyable and most of all totally believable and this is the best part of Moore's writing for me. Although there are others in the book, I don't really want to say much at all about them as I'll spoil the story, but again they are superbly written, really delving deep into their emotions and bringing out another range of opinions from the reader regarding the main story.

The cover of the book doesn't really give anything away about the story, its just a picture of a woman dressed smartly, throwing away a ring (wedding ring?) with pretty pink writing, which I don't think does justice to the gritty and topical story within its pages. Moore has really picked a controversial subject here, that of "designer babies" and whether they are right or wrong, but somehow the way she has written it makes you think there is no alternative but to have another baby, right or wrong. She doesn't preach at all about the subject, but clearly shows how any parent would have to choose to save their sick child, whatever the cost and this is why the book is so emotive, particularly for parents to read. Its not an easy subject to write about but it does happen and it is interesting to read a novel based around this idea.

I absolutely loved this book and I just couldn't put it down. From its interesting topic to the relationships and arguments that take place throughout the book, Moore has written a story which is going to be a pleasure to read for anyone but one that moves you and strikes a chord with you, so much so that you'll be thinking about this book long after you turn the last page. It has likeable characters, an emotional pull at the heart strings dottd throughout, and an easy-to-read third person narrative, allowing you to slip in and out of the lives of the multiple characters in the book with ease. It was a joy to read, I actually didn't want it to end but felt satisfied that as I turned the last page, I had enjoyed every word and that it had ended how I felt I would have ended it too! A pleasure to read, and I'd thoroughly recommend it without a doubt.

Rating: 5/5

1 comment:

  1. sarah broadhurst28 January 2010 at 17:31

    this is a book i read sometime ago - think it was part of the Tesco's book club last year and i loved it! as you said a gritty subject and one which you would not want to have to consider. thought it was similar to a jodi picoult style book and would recommend it to all who like her style of writing and subjects