Desire for a child is at the heart of Claiming Noah, and two couples in pursuit of baby love find themselves in a heartbreaking situation.
James and Catriona Sinclair, living in Sydney, Australia, go through IVF to achieve their goal, and after a couple of miscarriages, they finally reach full term with their son Sebastian. An extra embryo has been set aside, and the couple decide to donate it. Neither wants to risk losing the one remaining embryo through miscarriage.
Liam and Diana Simmons have also had no luck in achieving parenthood, and when their doctor suggests implanting a donor embryo, they have some misgivings. But they finally decide to go for it. Diana becomes pregnant and carries to term, giving birth to Noah.
Life does not go well for either couple, though. Catriona suffers from postpartum psychosis and is hospitalized, and upon her return home, she does not readily bond with Sebastian. She thinks he seems different than he was before, although she cannot pinpoint exactly what is troubling her about him. However a couple of months have gone by, so she puts her feelings down to the separation.
Meanwhile, Diana and Liam are having marital difficulties, with their relationship skidding toward even greater challenges. Then one day, as Diana and Noah go shopping, something happens…and their lives are also upended. In the aftermath, Liam expresses a distinctly cruel side, and the two are living parallel lives. Liam blames Diana, and she blames herself.
To avoid spoilers, I will say no more about the plot, except that what actually unfolds might surprise you. I had some of it figured out right away, but I still enjoyed watching it all reach a conclusion…and then was surprised by the epilogue that gave a peek into the future. I enjoyed this book, although the support characters were flat…and sometimes I didn’t really get a sense of who James was, except through occasional glimpses from the perspectives of others. Liam was a bully, but any other characteristics were also hard to see. Catriona and Diana were drawn in greater detail, and I rooted for them both. 4 stars.