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The Baby by Lisa Drakeford - Review

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Where did I get it? In a swap I did at Christmas! It was on my wishlist

What's it about? At the beginning of the book we meet Olivia, near her 17th birthday. She's having a part for it. Her best friend Nicola is there, her boyfriend Jonty, her friend Ben, and her sister Alice. Her parents have gone out and Alice is getting stressed. Jonty is extremely jealous with Olivia, and then to top it all off Nicola gives birth in the bathroom! She didn't know she was pregnant and now there's a whole new life in existence. Olivia catches a look between Nicola and Jonty and wonders exactly who the baby's father is... 

The next chapter is told from Nicola's point of view as she struggles with motherhood. In the next one we meet Alice, Olivia's younger sister, and while you could exclude her point of view, I liked seeing her make a friend and learning more about her. The next chapter is from Jonty's point of view and we learn more about why he acted the way he did. There are explanations but not excuses. The last chapter is from Ben's point of view and ends off the novel nicely.

I liked the concept, but I didn't like this book as much as I hoped I would. I really liked Olivia and Nicola, and wanted more of their points of view on everything, not just on the happenings in the book. I think you could write a whole book from Jonty's point of view and see him as a real rehabilitated character by the end. I liked Alice's point of view, as above, but I didn't really like Ben's, and I didn't like the 'twist' that there was - it felt very out of nowhere and didn't get adequately resolved. 

What age range is it for? 14+ 

Are any main characters LGBTQ+? Yes, Ben's gay

Are any main characters people of colour? It's not mentioned if they are

Are any main characters disabled either mentally or physically? Alice is probably on the autistic spectrum and I really liked how this was described 

Is there any sex stuff? Not really, it's not explicit 

Are drugs mentioned or used? I don't think so 

Is there any talk of death? No 

Are there swear words? Only a couple 

What criticisms do I have? As above really. I wanted to like this more, I don't think it was executed very well 

Would I recommend the book? Probably not 

Why did I choose to read it at this point in life? It pointed itself out on the shelf to me when I was browsing them the other night 

What other books is it like? The style reminded me of Non Pratt's writing, but I'd say read Non's books instead 

How many stars? Three out of five 

Where is the book going now? I'm not sure. I might donate it!

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