Rating:

Reviewed by Colleen Turner

On the surface Noelle seems to have a fulfilling life: she is a trusted midwife, is surrounded by friends that love her and has developed an organization to help sick and poor babies. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, she commits suicide and leaves her two best friends – Tara and Emerson – wondering what they missed and what could have driven their optimistic, loving friend to take her life. No one can believe that the Noelle they knew would do such a thing. They are right. What they learn is they didn’t really know Noelle after all.

Tara and Emerson set off to uncover what could have caused their friend to commit such a desperate act. While cleaning out the house she rented to Noelle, Emerson finds a partially completed letter to someone named Anna in which Noelle confesses committing a horrible act against this woman. Working through this shock the two friends continue to dig and discover more secrets their friend was keeping from them, secrets that not only affect this Anna but their lives as well. These two remaining friends keep each other afloat, while their daughters, who are also best friends, do the same for each other. Still, when the final ball is dropped and the worst secret is discovered, none of their lives will ever be the same.

The Midwife’s Confession is not for the faint at heart. It is about secrets, lies and heinous crimes hidden away. It is about how far someone will go to keep their true identity and secret past from those they love, and will leave you wondering how well you actually know those around you. Diane Chamberlain sensitively presents a series of truths that many of us could not imagine dealing with in our own lives. She somehow does it in a way that allows you into the heads and hearts of each of the central characters, even Noelle who I desperately wanted to hate but just couldn’t seem to do. I have to admit that what she reveals made me cringe and I fleetingly wanted to turn away and stop reading, but the book unwinds so skillfully that I couldn’t stop from continuing on this path that could only lead to something hard to digest.

Read The Midwife’s Confession if you want a well written study in humanity and loss, just be prepared for the emotions it might elicit within you.

Rating: 4.5/5

Colleen lives in Tampa, Florida with her husband, son and pet fish. When not working or taking care of her family she has her nose stuck in a book (and, let’s face it, often when she is working or taking care of her family as well). Nothing excites her more than discovering a new author to obsess over or a hidden jewel of a book to worship.

Giveaway:
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This giveaway is open to US and Canada residents only. Deadline to enter is midnight on May 6, 2011.

Review and giveaway copies were provided free of any obligation by Meryl L. Moss Media Relations. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.