Archive

Posts Tagged ‘surrogacy’

Book Review: Gargoyles by Alan Nayes (Series, #1)

December 22, 2011 2 comments

Eyes behind a beaker.Summary:
Amoreena is determined to be a doctor and help people.  She’s a hard-working, scholarship student on the pre-med track in her third year of college.  Unfortunately, her single mother just got diagnosed with metastatic cancer and lost her health insurance.  With no time for a job and no money for the bills, Amoreena is grateful when she is approached by a surrogacy clinic to be a surrogate for $50,000 with payments upon successful insemination and each trimester.  But after she’s successfully inseminated, Amoreena becomes increasingly concerned that something is not quite right with her baby.

Review:
This book is best summed up as the scientific Rosemary’s Baby, which also means it kicks serious ass.  Even people who find pregnancy to be a miracle (people who I completely do not understand) are creeped out by a pregnancy gone awry.  This basic storyline then is ideal for a modern update aka switch out the demons and Satanism for science.

Nayes successfully sets up a realistic and compelling reason behind Amoreena’s surrogate motherhood, which is key to the whole story.  Readers need to be able to believe that this intelligent woman made a not so intelligent choice with good reason.  A loving relative dying with no health insurance is something so relatable to most Americans that it gives the whole story a more realistic tone than it might otherwise have.  Also, the amount of stress Amoreena is under gives a plausible other reason for her difficult pregnancy to add to the mystery.

The secondary characters are well-rounded and believable.  Nayes handles the largely Hispanic array of them with deft and avoidance of stereotyping.  There is no othering of the company or those in control of it.  The answers to the problems are not so black and white as a lot of international intrigue tends to make it, and I appreciated that.  The gray areas of science and scientific research are clearly depicted while also accurately showing the full range of humanity present in Mexico and Guatemala.

So with all these positives, why am I not totally in love with it?  The ending and big reveal are a bit anti-climactic.  The suspense is built up so well that the relatively average ending couldn’t quite live up to it.  I think the choice to make the main character sick during the climax was not a wise one.  The book does redeem itself though with the somewhat cliffhanger ending that will lead into the next book in the series, and I am excited for it to come out.

Overall this horror suspense is a great addition to the genre of evil pregnancies.  I recommend it and am looking forward to the next entry in the series.

4 out of 5 stars

Source: Kindle copy from the author in exchange for my honest review

Buy It