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Be Kind. Do Good. Love is a Verb.

Monday, March 28, 2011


About the book:
A medical mistake during an IVF procedure. An unthinkable situation...you’re pregnant with the wrong baby. You can terminate, but you can’t keep him. What choice would you make?

Carolyn and Sean Savage had been trying to expand their family for years. When they underwent an IVF transfer in February 2009, they knew it would be their last chance. If they became pregnant, they would celebrate the baby as an answer to their prayers. If not, they would be grateful for the family they had and leave their fertility struggles behind forever.

They never imagined a third option. The pregnancy test was positive, but the clinic had transferred the wrong embryos. Carolyn was pregnant with someone else’s baby.

The Savages faced a series of heartbreaking decisions: terminate the pregnancy, sue for custody, or hand over the infant to his genetic parents upon delivery. Knowing that Carolyn was carrying another couple’s hope for a baby, the Savages wanted to do what they prayed the other family would do for them if the situation was reversed. Sean and Carolyn Savage decided to give the ultimate gift, the gift of life, to a family they didn’t know, no strings attached.

Inconceivable provides an inside look at how modern medicine, which creates miracles daily, could allow such a tragic mistake, and the many legal ramifications that ensued with both the genetic family and the clinic. Chronicling their tumultuous pregnancy and its aftermath, which tested the Savage’s faith, their relationship to their church, and their marriage, Inconceivable is ultimately a testament to love. Carolyn and Sean loved this baby, making it impossible for them to imagine how they could give him life and then give him away.

In the end, Inconceivable is a story of what it is to be a parent, someone who nurtures a life, protects a soul, only to release that child into the world long before you’re ready to let him go.

After I read Shannon and Paul Morell's book, Misconception, I was really intrigued with the story of Carolyn and Sean Savage.  I jumped at the chance to review their book and I wasn't disappointed.  While they had no legal or biological claim to the child Carolyn carried, they had an intense emotional claim.  This child was one they had wanted and prayed for a loved even before he was conceived.  I can't imagine their grief when they found out he wasn't theirs.

Sean and Carolyn alternate telling their stories and the book is the richer for both perspectives. Their story is candid and honest and they do a fantastic job of sharing their feelings.  Pregnancy is an emotional roller coaster and a physically demanding roller coaster.  Holding that baby in your arms when it's over is what makes it worth it.  To go into a pregnancy with that hope and then to have it destroyed in this manner is unfathomable.  The mother in me could so relate to Carolyn's feelings and the absolute love she had for the child she carried, biological or not.

To say I was moved is an understatement.  I was touched beyond words.  I found their courage admirable.  What was so frustrating for me is how self-centered the biological mother was.  Even in her own book, she had very little concern for Carolyn and Sean's feelings.  Rather than just expecting the Savages to turn Logan over to them, I think the Morell's could have shown more empathy for them and gratitude for the fact that they did just that.

I have sympathy for the Morells but very little respect. I have the utmost respect for the Savages. 

Thanks to Trish at TLC for the opportunity to review this book.  You can learn more about Carolyn and Sean Savage here.  You can see other reviews here. You can purchase your own copy here.

Read 3/11

* * * *
4/5 Stars


  1. Wow...I think I might have to pick up a copy of this book. Having never been pregnant, I don't know if I could give up a baby that I was carrying, even if I knew it wasn't mine. What a tough decision...

  2. I was so intrigued to see what you thought of this book since you had read the Morell's book. I felt the same way about the Morells as you did, but I found Sean and Carolyn's story so real and compelling.

  3. I am almost through listening to this one and it is gut wrenching. I feel bad for the Savages, but I also feel like they're making themselves sound almost too good. I didn't realize the Morell's had a book out.

  4. That's so interesting that you felt that way about the other couple after reading their book. I definitely want to read their book so that I can see it from both points of view as well. Great review!

  5. Horrible Horrible. I am definetly NOT reading this book

  6. Holly, Thanks so much for the positive review. I'm glad you thought it was a good read. The process of writing our story was very thereapeutic for us. I think it was helpful to process everything that we have been through. It makes me realize how far we have come in the past two years.

    We are so grateful for the three children that we get to raise. They bring so much happiness into our lives, and I think I appreciate the little moments more than ever!

    To the commenter who thinks that we make ourselves out to be so great, I hope if you decide to read the book you will see we were very honest about our more unflattering moments. It was important to us to be honest in our account of what we went through, which meant revealing some of our uglier moments. It's our hope, that by doing so, readers will be inspired to accept that we are all human. That we can have moments born out of frustration, recover from them and move to higher ground!

    All The Best,

    Carolyn Savage

  7. Hi Holly,

    Thanks so much for the positive review of our book. It was our hope that by sharing our story we would be able to inspire others to face the tough challenges that come into their lives with honesty, love and kindness.

    Writing the book was also therapeutic for us. I think it allowed us to process our experiences and give them meaning. We wouldn't be the people we are today without having been through this.

    We were very honest in the book about our more unflattering moments. It was such a frustrating experience, and that frustration manifested itself in some very ugly moments. I especially suffered from resentfulness, misdirected anger, and even jealousy. It was important to me to share those moments so that people would realize that imperfect people can navigate a challenging situation, having those "ugly moments", and still come out on the other side, as long as they cling to their faith and a strong moral compass!

    Again, thanks so much for the review. Sean saw it on Amazon and was so excited. He said, "We got a great review from a legitimate reviewer." I knew right away it was probably yours. I've been waiting to see what you thought of the book.

    All The Best,


  8. I loved seeing your thoughts on this one in comparison to the other book. Thanks for such a thoughtful review.