Book Review

Book Review: The Other Mother by Carol Goodman-5 Stars

I need to start this one off with a disclaimer. While I loved the suspenseful, thriller aspect, this book deals heavily with postpartum anxiety/depression/psychosis. I struggled with PPA and this book really hit home with me and brought back some of those fears I had when my son was really little.  I actually had nightmares over some of the scenes that occur. I give the author kudos for including a warning at the beginning of this book as well as an interview with an author who wrote a book that deals with postpartum psychosis.

Daphne is a new mom to Chloe. She becomes friends with Laurel, who also has a daughter named Chloe, at Mom Group. They are both dealing with first time mom/new mom struggles. Laurel is everything Daphne is not- elegant, rich, polished, skinny…but not long after meeting they are acting the same, dressing the same, going to the gym together, Daphne is losing weight and changing her hair to be like Laurel’s.

When Daphne decides to flee with her baby from her controlling husband, she takes a job as an archivist, posing as Laurel, for her favorite author. Schuyler, the author, lives on the grounds near a mental hospital that her father ran. Daphne/Laurel is already dealing with psychosis, but being near this institution and going through Sky’s father’s medical records is making her start to question things even more so.

This book will really make you be suspicious of everyone! Who is who? Who did what? Is anything and anyone like it seems? Told in narrative as well as journal entries by both Laurel and Daphne as well as Edith, a patient, the plot flows quickly and sucks you in.

This book was very complex and surprising. Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, the author drops a bomb and completely shocks you! I would recommend but only if you are aware of the heavy subjects this book deals with. I know I would not have been able to read it in the 6 months after my son was born.