Book Review: Inconceivable

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Inconceivable by Carolyn & Sean Savage
Genre: Biography, Memoir
ISBN: 978-0062004635
Published: February 14, 2011
Publisher: HarperOne
Pages: 304


After a mistake at her infertility clinic, Carolyn Savage learned she was carrying another couple’s baby. In this memoir that belongs at the top of any truth-is-stranger-than-fiction list, she and her husband tell the tale of why they decided to go through with the pregnancy and deliver a healthy boy to the biological parents. (Basically, it’s because of their religious beliefs.) The book, which shifts between Carolyn’s and Sean’s perspectives, would have been better had biological parents Shannon and Paul Morell contributed, too. From the beginning, Carolyn seems to resent Shannon for not being sufficiently appreciative, and even after she says she is giving up baby Logan with no strings attached, she is peeved that Shannon sends her the same birth announcement “in the same way that she had announced him to her extended family and distant friends.” Ultimately, the Morells bring Logan to meet the Savages, but it’s unclear how often they will see each other. The story is compelling and well told, although the Savages come across as martyrs more than saints. –Karen Springen

My Thoughts

This is a story of love, compassion, heartbreak, misery, God, hate & so many more emotions. I had first heard about this story in early 2010. The couple who is on the other end of this story, published a book in May 2010. If you would like to read my review of their book: Misconception.

I can not imagine the pain & suffering Carolyn and Sean went through, finding out the child she is carrying is someone else’s. What I do not understand is Carolyn and Seans insistence that this baby was somehow theirs, through the whole book.

Morally they decided to do what they thought was right, which was to carry the baby to term. In this situation they had two choices: 1. Abort the baby. 2. Carry the baby to term and hand over the baby after he or she was born. Legally they had no rights to this child and although it is something that makes me sick to my stomach, it was never theirs to keep.

The story is told to us from both Carolyn and Seans point a view which I thought was an excellent way to feel them both & to know what they both went through, often the man or husband is left out in these stories, as is the case with Misconception.

I believe that what Carolyn and Sean did was very heroic and I am not sure I could endure it if put in the same situation, or if I could make the same choices they did. However their need to be a part of Logan’s life made me feel odd, since they have no biological connection to him. Yes, she did carry him in her womb and birthed him but that does not make you a mother.

I highly recommend this book, it really is amazing and you wonder where all their courage and love comes from. If you read this book, I also encourage you to read Misconception so that you can see the issue from both families.



1 Comment so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Carolyn Savage February 25, 2011 at 10:06 am - Reply

    Hi Roseanne,
    Thanks for the great review. I wanted to address one issue that you mentioned regarding our need to be part of Logan’s life. It stems from the very fact that when a woman makes the decision to bring a life into the world, there is a lifelong responsibility that goes along with that decision. It’s not as if he is “out of sight, out of mind”. I will love him and care deeply for him until I take my last breath. We balance that with a respectful approach to his life. We hope to “know” him as he grows, but we have never had any expectation of anything except for honesty from his parents. Our role in his life has to be their decision. They are his parents.

    I hope that clears up our “odd” feelings. Personally, I think it would be “odder” (if that’s a word) to give birth to a baby, give him away for whatever reason, and then never think about him again.

    Again, glad you enjoyed the read.

    All The Best,

    Carolyn Savage

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