January 8, 2012

The Surrogate (Sundarium Trilogy) - 5 out of 5

The Surrogate, the Sudarium Trilogy - Book OneThe Surrogate, the Sudarium Trilogy - Book One by Leonard Foglia and David Richards

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This story centers around a 19-year-old Hannah Manning, who has been unloved and slightly adrift since the death of her parents in a horrible car crash. She was taken in by her bitter aunt and sad uncle, feeling unloved for the remainder of her childhood. She finds herself at 19, waitressing at a diner, and questioning the meaning of life and what direction she should take. She waits for a sign and thinks she has found it when she finds an ad for Partners in Parenthood, a one woman company that promotes surrogate parenting for those who cannot carry a pregnancy to term. She thinks the add is a sign and sees it as a wonderful thing she can do for a childless couple. She goes into it with the same feelings that many surrogates have, truly wanting to help someone have the family they want.

Hannah has a lot of growing up to do and does so during the course of this harrowing tale. Everything is so sweet on the surface, yet there are dark things moving under the surface of what turns out to be a plot that takes everything from Hannah, including her innocence. Not to worry, no spoilers here. But I can't say more, even though the book description here on the Amazon page says just a tad too much about the story.

This is told almost entirely from Hannah's point of view. You begin to feel like you know this girl and you grow to know and like her friend Terri and a young priest nicknamed Father "Jimmy" by his parish. The story carries all the hallmarks of a religious thriller without reverting to Christian fiction or preaching at all.

I sat down to read this story this morning and couldn't stop reading. Except for a break to make dinner, I read it in one sitting. I found myself asking so many times, how is she going to get out of this? how are they going to get out of this? etc. I couldn't stop reading until I found out. This is such a well-constructed thriller that I'm looking forward to reading the other books in this series!

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