Baby Next Time by Nicole Klieff

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Baby Next Time by Nicole Klieff

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Category: Home and Family
Rating: 3/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: Fertility treatments dominated the lives of Nicole and Barry for years. It's a worthwhile read but is let down by poor editing.
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 140 Date: August 2008
Publisher: AuthorHouse
ISBN: 978-1434395139

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Nicole Klieff grew up with the same knowledge that most women hope to have. They'll enjoy themselves, eventually meet Mister Right, settle down and have a family. Well, most of it went according to plan – it was just that bit about having a family which seemed somewhat elusive. After a period of trying for a baby in the normal way Nicole and her husband Barry sought help from the medical profession and began the fertility treatments which were to dominate their lives for years to come. It wouldn't do their bank balance much good either.

If you've any interest in this subject you'll have read all the carefully-crafted magazine articles and books which give you the medical details of what's involved and all the statistics about success rates. This book isn't like that – it's about one couple's experience of what it feels like to get involved in the treadmill of fertility treatment and if it's a possibility for you then you will be wiser for reading it and might even be better placed to ask pertinent questions of the medical profession. It's not medical advice - it's personal experience.

What seemed incredible to me was that some hospitals have what's almost a predetermined route through the treatments available regardless of whether or not they are entirely appropriate. The use of donor eggs failed for Nicole and Barry – and did little more than place added stress on the couple when a donor bottled out at the last moment. Treatments were given – but later investigations proved that they could never have worked.

There's an enlightening picture of what it's like to be the childless couple in a society dominated by those with – or about to produce – children and the book is certainly a worthwhile read for this point of view. It's excellent too at spelling out the indignities (sperm test, anyone?) that both the man and the woman are going to be subjected to and about keeping a relatively normal other life going whilst all this is happening. Unless you're absolutely determined to go ahead no matter what then it might help you to decide whether the treatments are right for you. I'm not going to tell you whether Nicole and Barry were successful in their quest to have a baby – you'll have to read the book to find out.

If I've a quibble with the book it's that Nicole has been let down – badly – by her editor. Writers know what they want to say and it doesn't always appear in perfect English. The editor's job is to apply that polish and make certain that the grammatical errors, misuse of words and incorrect facts are weeded out before the book is printed. I'm afraid that hasn't been done well with Baby Next Time and it was sufficiently evident for it to interfere with my enjoyment of the book.

I'd like to thank the author for sending a copy to The Bookbag.

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