“The Choice” by Robert Whitlow

One young woman. Two very different roads. The choice will change everything.

Even as a pregnant, unwed teen in 1974, Sandy Lincoln wanted to do the right thing. But when an ageless woman approached her in a convenience store with a mysterious prophecy and a warning, doing the right thing became even more unclear. She made the best choice she could . . . and has lived with the consequences.

More than thirty years later, a pregnant teen has come into her life, and Sandy‚Äôs long-ago decision has come back to haunt her. The stakes rise quickly, leaving Sandy with split seconds to choose once more. But will her choice decision bring life . . . or death?

I have long been a fan of Robert Whitlow’s books, and this one was as dramatic as any other.  Almost epic in nature, it spanned more than thirty years of Sandy Lincoln’s life and encompassed those around her, as well.  Like some of his other books, this one has hints of supernatural influence and the actions of the characters are shaped by their faith.  The main character, Sandy, also had life-and-death decisions to make that dramatically influenced the rest of her life.

The Choice is a fascinating, informative read.  Whitlow writes as smoothly as ever with characters that could be your next-door neighbors.  The content and action will make you think about and question your possible course of action should you ever find yourself in a similar situation, and all of this lives up to the high standard set by Whitlow’s other stories; but there is one thing that I think was left out of this book that could have made it better.

Spoiler Alert:  I’ll try to be vague, but I will share a bit of information below.

The first half of the book was about Sandy’s options when she discovered that she was pregnant in 1974, and the second part of the book is about her interactions with a young, pregnant student in her school thirty  years later.  Sandy finds herself in trouble for the ways in which she counsels this student, and yet while those accusations at times may border on truth, Sandy never fully sits down and has a deep talk with Maria.  I felt as if she could have gone so much deeper with her – really sharing her own story, talking through the potential ramifications of the options, even playing the numbers game and helping her to see how she might be able to make things work – but Sandy does none of this.  Instead, she starts by sharing only the options that she considers valid and ends by countering the actions of the person upset with her.  While I don’t think  that abortion should be a valid choice, maybe Sandy should’ve been the one to explain to Maria exactly what the procedure means in detail.  In the story, there wasn’t a single person willing to explain all of the options without presenting her own agenda.  This really made me hurt for Maria and understand her confusion.

I’d love to say that this would be a great story for someone facing an unplanned pregnancy to read, but I’m not sure that’s the case.  While the reader can see that Whitlow doesn’t believe in abortion, this comes through in Sandy’s story but not as well in Maria’s.

So that is ultimately my take on this story.  While it was a great read and very informative, I’m not sure that it could provide someone with all of the information necessary to make this kind of choice.

In the end, however, no matter how Maria’s story evolved, making the right choice is highlighted, no matter how difficult it may seem.

If you want to go ahead and check this book out for yourself, you can purchase it here.  You can read other reviews on this bloggy tour here

Robert Whitlow is the best-selling author of legal novels set in the South and winner of the prestigious Christy Award for Contemporary Fiction. A Furman University graduate, Whitlow received his J.D. with honors from the University of Georgia School of Law where he served on the staff of the Georgia Law Review. A practicing attorney, Whitlow and his wife, Kathy, have four children. They make their home in North Carolina.  

For more about Robert and his other books, visit www.robertwhitlow.com.
I received a free copy of The Choice from LitFuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.
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