Chosen Child by Linda Huber

Chosen Child is Linda Huber’s fourth novel. The previous three, like Chosen Child, are psychological thrillers: The Paradise Trees (2013), The Cold Cold Sea  (2014) and The Attic Room (2015)

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Ella dreams of having a child to love and care for; to do the usual family things that most take for granted.When she and husband Rick become ‘panel-approved to adopt’ they are invited to go to an adoption party which provides an afternoon full of fun and games for the children and a chance for prospective adoptive parents to choose a child.

Ella is enthusiastic but Rick is not so keen. He does not like the idea of picking a child. Any child will do…as long as it is a boy…and as long as he has no disabilities, he says.

As the afternoon progresses, Rick becomes increasingly difficult and Ella is exasperated with him for spoiling the day. When Ella sees six-year-old Soraya she feels an immediate connection. This is the child that she wants.

As Rick becomes ambivalent about the adoption of Soraya, Ella ignores the cracks in her marriage and attempts to keep the peace until the adoption of Soraya is finalised and they become a complete family.

Meanwhile, Amanda, mother of 14-month-old Jaden is caught in a stagnant marriage to Gareth and has a lover, James. Whereas Gareth is often grumpy, James is funny and clever. They meet whenever they can in his small flat and occasionally at her marital home in St. Ives. When Amanda discovers she is pregnant she has no idea whose baby it is – husband Gareth or lover James.

Amanda and James could not have predicted what the future would hold when they embarked on their frivolous affair. Both were in search of some excitement and escapism from the boring humdrum of life rather than meeting because they had fallen in love. One day an unpredictable and devastating event occurs which has far reaching consequences for both Amanda and James changing their lives irrevocably. This, in turn, threatens Ella’s future with Soraya.

I found all the characters realistic, from Ella’s desire to keep the peace with a difficult husband so as not to jeopardise her chances of achieving her dream of adopting a child, to Amanda and James’ desire for some fun to make life a little more interesting. Rick’s uncooperative and moody personality was an authentic portrayal of an unhappy man with a lot of problems on his mind.

This is another page turning novel from Linda Huber. She is excellent at keeping the tension throughout, compelling you to keep reading. Chosen Child is a story which challenges the morality of human nature and how erroneous choices made under pressure determine future outcomes; how sometimes people just get swept away in the wreckage before having a chance to make sensible decisions. 

IMG_0733 Linda, born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland now lives with her family in Arbon, Switzerland. She originally trained as a physiotherapist and came into contact with neurological patients and handicapped children which have given her an insight into the coping mechanisms people use when faced with difficult situations.

You can follow Linda on Twitter: @LindaHuber19

You can read a full review of The Attic Room here