Book Reviews

Careful What You Wish For: The Surrogate by Louise Jensen @Fab_fiction @bookouture


Happy release day to the wonderful and mind-blowingly talented Louise Jensen and her newest story, The Surrogate! Once again, I jumped on the book, forgot all plans, and immersed myself in what is a real Coup de Coeur!

Thank you so much to Bookouture for allowing me to kick off the tour with damppebbles and Emma the little bookworm and for providing me with a copy of this book!

the surrogateTitle: The Surrogate
Author: Louise Jensen
Publisher: Bookouture
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Date of publication: September 27th 2017
Format: eARC
Number of pages: 345
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐️⭐️

‘You know that feeling? When you want something so badly, you almost feel you’d kill for it?’ 

Be careful what you wish for…

Kat and her husband Nick have tried everything to become parents, and are on the point of giving up. Then a chance encounter with Kat’s childhood friend Lisa gives Kat and Nick one last chance to achieve their dream. 

But Kat and Lisa’s history hides dark secrets. 

And there is more to Lisa than meets the eye. 

As dangerous cracks start to appear in Kat’s perfect picture of happily-ever-after, she realises that she must face her fear of the past to save her family… 

From the no. 1 bestselling author of The Sister and The Gift, this is an unputdownable psychological thriller which asks how far we will go to create our perfect family. 


Ever wanted something so bad you would do anything to get it?

I wanted bookcases so I nagged and nagged until the apartment was finally filled with books houses.

But what Kat wants is a baby. You can’t buy them on Amazon (yet) or make your choice among IKEA baby shelves.

The heart of The Surrogate is motherhood. What it takes, what happens when you’re denied it, when you get cast to be the woman, not the mother. But it is also so much more than that.

Louise Jensen dives so deep into the psyche of a woman whose desire runs deeply into her veins. For personal reasons, this book stirred emotions I did not know I felt, did not know existed, did not know could hurt so bad.
When I read a story, I want them to be realistic, I like to relate, I enjoy to fear, I appreciate the familiarity of the emotions, I relish in living through the pages, I take pleasure in discovering feelings and having my thoughts and beliefs questioned. The Surrogate did all of this and gave me more than I thought I expected.

Oh, I knew I was in for a good read. I fell in love with Louise Jensen’s style with her debut The Sister and I am delighted to let you know the peculiar and atmospheric, absolutely claustrophobic writing is once again au rendez-vous. I dare you to take a look at the beginning and then tear yourself away easily! I know I was unable to. Not that I actually wanted to, haha!

This book is about a life, a regular couple life. Except that life is anything but regular if you scratch the surface, something neither party has ever done. And this tiny life sucks you in and traps you into the pages. I remember talking with friends about how reading was for escapism and they did not understand my fascination for stories about people, about things that could happen to any of us. Well, reading about it makes me feel alive. Alive and kicking, just like a baby. Alive, kicking, breathing, and discovering the world through the eyes of a writer who knows better than me how to express all those different experiences and feelings we get to encounter along the years.

Kat is a typical Jensen character. I was on her side from the start, it was us against the world. Unreliable at times, scared, loved, loving, hoping, Kat let me in on her journey through motherhood. But not only. Because how do you build a future when your past still hunts you?

Every character is built with their strength, their flaws, their suspicions, their inner sanctum and the author let doors appear, one after the other, until you get to know those people so well you could swear they are part of you. Because there’s something to learn from all of them, because the bad guys are not always the ones we think, because the good guys are capable of the worst, because nothing is black and white and all is gray. The perfect gray Louise Jensen paints in her books.

I discovered the power of a past/present narration thanks to Louise Jensen more than a year ago. Gosh, this woman knows where to put her pawns and make them move at the right time for you to feel that undercurrent of unease, to see the light reflect on a silver thread of web slowly forming to create a masterpiece in which every word, every movement, every comma comes together and wraps you up. The Surrogate smothers you until you feel each twitch in your bone, each of the characters’ feelings in your own heart, each of the plot lines unfold to finally set you free.

Except I’ll never be free from this story. I do not want to. I want to cherish the tension. I want to dwell on past mistakes. I want to sing the playlist. I want to ponder over how strong friendships can be. I want to know what it takes to be a mother, and not forget how difficult it can be to become one.

On top of all those emotions, you can find the very issue of surrogacy and the controversy around it. Each country has rules about it and this book definitely raises the question of adoption, the use of surrogates, the needs of childless parents, and the hope of orphans to find a home. A sensible writing and real research only make Kat and her husband Nick’s journey more realistic and painful, Louise Jensen having captured the essence of human beings and their desire for a life to love more than their own. She beautifully describes how those difficult times take a toll on the body and mind of any couple. The Surrogate feels like a testimony of millions of story, familiar and relatable, plunged in a twisted and taut ocean that ends up washing everything away, only leaving the reader soaked in emotions and drenched in feelings.

The tension gradually showed its face and I held my breath for so long I thought I’d forgotten how to breathe and… When I thought I’d reached the ending after so many threads that had left me transfixed, speechless, and hurt, for all that had happened, had not, would not, I was again blown away by another layer of this impossibly intricate and absolutely nailed emotional plot.

The Surrogate is this publishing season’s must-read – a riveting tale of love, given; awaited; hoped for; and poison, dark; impossible to escape. Louise Jensen doesn’t disappoint with her addictive and soul-whispering writing!

Don’t waste another second, get the book on Amazon UK or US!!!!


Louise Jensen author pic - no credit

Louise Jensen always wanted to be Enid Blyton when she grew up, and when that didn’t happen she got a ‘proper’ job instead.

Several years ago an accident left Louise with a disability and she began writing once again, to distract her from her pain and compromised mobility. But writing turned out to be more than just a good distraction. Louise loves creating exciting worlds, dark characters, and twisted plots.

Louise lives in Northamptonshire with her husband, sons, a dog and a rather naughty cat, and also teaches mindfulness.





Follow the blog tour and discover more about this fabulous book!

The Surrogate - Blog Blitz.jpeg

25 thoughts on “Careful What You Wish For: The Surrogate by Louise Jensen @Fab_fiction @bookouture”

  1. Great review Meggy and I agree with you on everything. I loved this book and couldn’t have predicted anything. How twisted and chilling was the epilogue? Brilliant, right?


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