cover image Fertile Ground H

Fertile Ground H

Rochelle Krich / Author William Morrow & Company $22 (352p) IS

Murder and mayhem cause havoc at a prestigious Los Angeles fertility clinic in Krich's complex and involving novel. Chelsea Wright, a young woman who donated her eggs to the clinic, is murdered; a short time later, the clinic's director, Dr. Matthew Gordon, disappears. Amid media accusations that the clinic is switching embryos, Dr. Lisa Brockman, Matthew's fiancee and a fertility specialist at the clinic, tries to find out what happened to Matthew and if there is any truth to the media allegations. Her investigation leads to the clinic's files, where she discovers that some patients may have become pregnant not with their own eggs as they believed but with those supplied by a donor. Afraid to trust any of the clinic staff, Lisa is unable to respond to the romantic overtures of fellow clinic doctor, Sam Davidson. The lukewarm level of suspense here is balanced by the gracious, intelligent and very likable character of Lisa, as well as by Krich's compelling storytelling and a satisfying surprise ending. In addition, Krich (Speak No Evil; Angel of Death) deftly weaves in Lisa's desire to return to her Orthodox Jewish roots and her concern with the religious questions raised for her Jewish patients by some assisted fertility practices. (Jan.)