Reviewed by Jennifer Bogart
Nobody's Child by Austin Boyd
"This is a richly textured story filled to bursting with the details of life in rural Appalachia."
Faced with her father’s mounting medical bills, a heavy debt load on their struggling farm, and a list of familial woes, Laura Ann McGehee makes a decision that she feels will save the family farm, despite its questionable morality. Desperate to bear the child she and her husband never had, single mother Sophia McQuistion arranges a pregnancy that is beyond her physical capabilities. Together these two women have mothered a child, but whose is he truly?
Modern reproductive technology has brought with it a host of ethical and moral concerns that even the church has been hard pressed to deal with. The rapid spread of such technologies has brought to surface many challenging questions that even Christians rarely ask themselves before plunging head-first into the quest for a child – no matter the cost (both moral and financial).
In Zondervan’s new series The Pandora Files, author Austin Boyd seeks to explore some of the issues raised by new life-related technologies. In the first novel Nobody’s Child, Boyd explores the issues of egg donation, artificial insemination, and of carrying a child to term made up of the life-giving genetic contributions of two separate people – neither one the mother carrying the child. It may seem bizarre but it is an all too real fact of modern life in our culture.
This is a richly textured story filled to bursting with the details of life in rural Appalachia. It gets off to a slow start, but slowly and surely draws readers into the weft and warp of its fabric. The story can be a bit more wordy than needed at times (too many similes and metaphors) – it almost seems to be striving to be literary fiction, but doesn’t quite make it.
Around halfway through the story I did become personally engaged with the characters and was brought to tears at times. This is very much a story of the women, the choices they make, and how it affects their lives. There are also some interesting details about the medical procedures used and potential legal ramifications that are not commonly known. This is a series that has been needed for some time in my opinion.
Jennifer Bogart is a child of God, wife and homeschooling mother of three young children (so far). She writes homeschooling resources with her husband at Bogart Family Resources, and reviews as a creative outlet. Passionately dedicated to promoting the work of Christian authors and artists, her blog Quiverfull Family features reviews, contests, family updates, homeschooling tidbits and well - a bit of everything.