Ladyslott's Reviews > The Doctor and the Diva

The Doctor and the Diva by Adrienne McDonnell
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's review
Aug 17, 2010

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bookshelves: 2010, adultery, arc, friendship, historical-fiction, italy, marriage, motherhood, music, nyc, relationships, south-america
Read in June, 2010

I am a huge fan of historical fiction so I was really looking forward to this book.

Based in part on a true story the Diva of the title is Erika, a gifted singer who dreams of going to Italy to pursue her dream of becoming an opera singer; but she also yearns to have a child. Her husband Peter is a successful business man and world traveler. When they consult Dr. Ravell, a doctor who has had some success with treating infertile couples, they hope he is the answer to their prayer. He does help the couple; but in a way that is very deceitful. When the pregnancy ends in tragedy the couple again seeks out the doctor, who has retired to South America. After another attempt Erika does become pregnant, returns to America where she makes a sudden and shocking decision, one that changes everything.

The story started off really well; I found the information on infertility treatments in the early part of the 20th century fascinating. However in the middle of the book the story got bogged down in too much detail, so much so that I found it hard to continue on at times. In addition the three main characters, in spite of some good intentions, were so selfish I found it difficult to like them. The only one I had any real sympathy for was the child, Quentin.

Each adult in this book made choices without really considering the ramifications and although at times a compelling story in the end it was more disappointing than enjoyable.


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