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Mother Knows Best

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A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her little boy. Now she wants a second chance to be a mother, and finds it in Robert Nash, a maverick fertility do/>There’s A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her little boy. Now she wants a second chance to be a mother, and finds it in Robert Nash, a maverick fertility doctor who works under the radar with Jillian Hendricks, a cunning young scientist bent on making her mark—and seducing her boss. Claire, Robert, and Jillian work together to create the world’s first baby with three genetic parents—an unprecedented feat that could eliminate inherited disease. But when word of their illegal experiment leaks to the wrong person, Robert escapes into hiding with the now-pregnant Claire, leaving Jillian to serve out a prison sentence that destroys her future. Ten years later, a spunky girl named Abigail begins to understand that all is not right with the reclusive man and woman she knows as her parents. But the family’s problems are only beginning. Jillian, hardened by a decade of jealousy and loss, has returned—and nothing will stop her from reuniting with the man and daughter who should have been hers. Past, present—and future converge in a mesmerizing psychological thriller from acclaimed bestselling author Kira Peikoff.


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A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her little boy. Now she wants a second chance to be a mother, and finds it in Robert Nash, a maverick fertility do/>There’s A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her little boy. Now she wants a second chance to be a mother, and finds it in Robert Nash, a maverick fertility doctor who works under the radar with Jillian Hendricks, a cunning young scientist bent on making her mark—and seducing her boss. Claire, Robert, and Jillian work together to create the world’s first baby with three genetic parents—an unprecedented feat that could eliminate inherited disease. But when word of their illegal experiment leaks to the wrong person, Robert escapes into hiding with the now-pregnant Claire, leaving Jillian to serve out a prison sentence that destroys her future. Ten years later, a spunky girl named Abigail begins to understand that all is not right with the reclusive man and woman she knows as her parents. But the family’s problems are only beginning. Jillian, hardened by a decade of jealousy and loss, has returned—and nothing will stop her from reuniting with the man and daughter who should have been hers. Past, present—and future converge in a mesmerizing psychological thriller from acclaimed bestselling author Kira Peikoff.

30 review for Mother Knows Best

  1. 5 out of 5

    Meredith

    Frankenbabies and Crazies! Mother Knows Best is a psychological thriller about a controversial scientific experiment that involves genetically modifying an embryo to eliminate genetic mutations by creating a three-parent baby. After burying her 8-year-old son who died of mitochondrial disease, Claire Abrams vows not to have another child. She doesn't want to pass on the disease that killed so many in her family. That is until she hears of Dr. Robert Nash, who is experimenting with the possibility of elimin Frankenbabies and Crazies! Mother Knows Best is a psychological thriller about a controversial scientific experiment that involves genetically modifying an embryo to eliminate genetic mutations by creating a three-parent baby. After burying her 8-year-old son who died of mitochondrial disease, Claire Abrams vows not to have another child. She doesn't want to pass on the disease that killed so many in her family. That is until she hears of Dr. Robert Nash, who is experimenting with the possibility of eliminating genetic illness by creating a baby who has 3 genetic parents. But this experiment spins out of control, destroying a once happy family. Fast forward to 11 years after the experiment--a psychopath is on the loose, and Claire might lose the child she fought so hard to conceive. Mother Knows Best is a quick and easy read. I found the idea of a genetically modified child with three parents intriguing. When the scientific implications are pushed to the backburner, the novel becomes a generic thriller and loses the extra something that the beginning of the plot provides. It gets a little convoluted, especially towards the end when things get way out of control. Everything wraps up too easily and neatly for my taste. This becomes less about science and more about crazies, which, while entertaining, sacrifices the potential of the premise. I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea Humphrey

    What an exciting, original psychological thriller! You all know I love a good science fiction, and this book truly felt as such, since the science aspect is so well developed and explored. While the ending does become a tad predictable, I don't feel like it took away from the overall enjoyment of the book, as the main focus is on what a brilliant concept the author has crafted. Highly recommended to those who enjoy reads beyond the scope of reality (or is it *wink wink*), and I am looking forwar What an exciting, original psychological thriller! You all know I love a good science fiction, and this book truly felt as such, since the science aspect is so well developed and explored. While the ending does become a tad predictable, I don't feel like it took away from the overall enjoyment of the book, as the main focus is on what a brilliant concept the author has crafted. Highly recommended to those who enjoy reads beyond the scope of reality (or is it *wink wink*), and I am looking forward to more from this author! Full review to come closer to publication date. *Many thanks to the publisher for providing my review copy via NetGalley.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kaceey

    What lengths would you go to have a perfectly healthy child? Would you step over the line, outside the law? Give up everything? All Claire wants is a healthy baby. Having tragically lost one child to a genetic mitochondrial disorder she’s not taking any chances! She is fully prepared to do whatever it takes to see that her child is free of the insidious genetic disorder! Oh Claire, if only you realized...everything comes at a price! Kira Peikoff writes a captivating and intriguing novel that will lock yo What lengths would you go to have a perfectly healthy child? Would you step over the line, outside the law? Give up everything? All Claire wants is a healthy baby. Having tragically lost one child to a genetic mitochondrial disorder she’s not taking any chances! She is fully prepared to do whatever it takes to see that her child is free of the insidious genetic disorder! Oh Claire, if only you realized...everything comes at a price! Kira Peikoff writes a captivating and intriguing novel that will lock you right in for the entire journey. While I had most of the twists figured out early, it most certainly didn’t take away from my overall enjoyment. Is it far-fetched...maybe. Or perhaps these futuristic elements are closer than we think! This was my first read from this author but I will definitely be on the lookout for her next release! A buddy read with Susanne! Thank you to NetGalley, Crooked Lane Books and Kira Peikoff for an ARC to read and review.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Okay 3.5 I’m really lost somebody help me, did I just read some book about a child may have 3 different genetic parents, a mother is also chased by her deceased son’s ghost in everywhere, well let’s round us up to FOUR GOD, I THINK MY CRACKS ARE GETTING BIGGER ON MY HEAD, I HOPE I LET ONLY SUNSHINE GETS THROUGH THOSE CRACKS STARS! Let’s talk about our three POVS: Good mother Claire, evil scientist madam Frankenstein Jillian (Don’t forget, this name firstly belonged to the doctor not t Okay 3.5 I’m really lost somebody help me, did I just read some book about a child may have 3 different genetic parents, a mother is also chased by her deceased son’s ghost in everywhere, well let’s round us up to FOUR GOD, I THINK MY CRACKS ARE GETTING BIGGER ON MY HEAD, I HOPE I LET ONLY SUNSHINE GETS THROUGH THOSE CRACKS STARS! Let’s talk about our three POVS: Good mother Claire, evil scientist madam Frankenstein Jillian (Don’t forget, this name firstly belonged to the doctor not to the patched man they’ve created) and our miracle child Abby. Claire is successful journalist, after losing her son, she and her husband Ethan tried to be parents again but because her age, she doesn’t have strong chance of conceiving a healthy child. Her son already passed away from genetic disease so she needs help of fertility doctor Robert Nash by being a volunteer of his genetic test trials. Robert Nash’s seducing, too smart and creepy assistant Jillian convinced the doctor to work on Claire. And they got the results: She was pregnant! Hurray! Everything went well till Claire’s husband Ethan found out their illegal genetic trial and called the police. And then what happened? Yes, 11 years old Abby is healthy, too smart, brilliant girl who is dubious about her mother’s secretive and paranoid life style tried to open Pandora’s box by connecting with her mother’s cousin from a popular DNA searching site. She starts to figure out her parents aren’t telling her the truth and the worst part is somebody breaks into their house and her mother is getting mentally more distracted at each day. Lies, secrets surrounded to the family are about to come out and haunt them forever! T This book put me in a confused state, saliva dripping down my mouth agape, a horrified expression on my face as if I recently watched Cardi B’s running for vice presidency speech with the support of Bernie’s team ( so you can imagine, it was ten times more terrifying than watching Jordan Peele’s horror movies) I was so dazed, confused and several times I said” all right all right all right” and murmured my fav college teacher Matthew McConaughey’s science fictional, weird Oscar speech about updated new version of himself word by word. ( Brain is an amazing thing, I don’t remember what I cook yesterday –because I didn’t, I have a husband for this- but I memorized those eerie words Especially last parts of the book gave me panic attacks. I asked those questions non-stop to myself: -So who is the mother of the children? –Who is the father? – Are the children real? – Are those children mine? – Are they bad robots or alien? – Did they come for the peace? –They aren’t my husbands, are they? Because I’m not natural redhead! – Could they be children of corn or children of men (sorry those were another books!) Finally I pinched myself to wake up from my dreamy state. When it didn’t work, I slapped myself. That is a first! I’m the target of my own slaps! But it worked. I got everything right about the final (Did I really? Oh shut up!) This is not a David Lynch movie, of course I understood everything correctly. There are no children… There are no parents. All we’re just dust in the wind. Of course I’m singing my favorite Kansas song lyrics not to give you spoilers. You should buy this book and test your own capacity and survival skills after finishing a real mind-bending, WTH I just read kind of book! As a summary: A fast paced, unconventional, surprising reading with too many twists. And I’m announcing the winner of detesting character who deserves to be slapped 24/7 contest: OUR SOCIOPATH SCIENTIST A.K.A MADAM FRAKENSTEIN JILLIAN! Most unlikable, vomit-able on her face kind of despicable character. An exhilarating, nerve-bending, page turner! Good for the readers who like twisty, edgy, original, controversial books!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Susanne Strong

    3 Stars. A Three Parent Baby? Does that sound just plain Crazy or is it the Future? In “Mother Knows Best” I think you’ll find that perhaps it’s both! When Claire’s first son passes away from Mitochondrial Disease she is devastated, especially as she carried the gene and passed it on to him. Desperate to get pregnant again, she finds a way to get what she wants. Hearing of experimental treatment that has not yet been approved, she approaches the doctor who is working a scienti/>A 3 Stars. A Three Parent Baby? Does that sound just plain Crazy or is it the Future? In “Mother Knows Best” I think you’ll find that perhaps it’s both! When Claire’s first son passes away from Mitochondrial Disease she is devastated, especially as she carried the gene and passed it on to him. Desperate to get pregnant again, she finds a way to get what she wants. Hearing of experimental treatment that has not yet been approved, she approaches the doctor who is working a scientific procedure to create a Three Parent Baby! One who would only get healthy genes! Can you say Voila? Enter Abigail. Years later, after her parents start acting strange, Abigail starts to suspect something is awry. When she “accidentally” discovers what it is, Abby is flummoxed. Who woulda thought? Once Abby discovers her parent’s secret, danger awaits and a game of cat and mouse begins. “Mother Knows Best” takes genetic mutation and spins it on its head. It’s a character driven mystery that admittedly had me scratching mine at times. It started off brilliantly and definitely got my attention though somewhere down the line I felt like it lost its way a bit. This was my first read by Kira Peikoff and it most certainly won’t be my last. This was a buddy read with Kaceey! Thank you to NetGalley, Crooked Lane Books and Kira Peikoff for an arc of this novel in exchange for an honest review. Published on NetGalley and Goodreads on 10.27.19.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nazanin

    4 Stars "Mother Knows Best" is a story about a mother who did everything to have healthy children and did her best to protect them, no matter how they were created! I went in blind and I suggest you do the same. This is not really a mystery, at least it wasn’t for me but it was a really good thriller! I enjoyed it so much! Told in multiple POV, 1st person. It’s a standalone novel; well-written, fast-paced, a page-turner with a satisfying ending, contains short chapters and alternates between 4 Stars "Mother Knows Best" is a story about a mother who did everything to have healthy children and did her best to protect them, no matter how they were created! I went in blind and I suggest you do the same. This is not really a mystery, at least it wasn’t for me but it was a really good thriller! I enjoyed it so much! Told in multiple POV, 1st person. It’s a standalone novel; well-written, fast-paced, a page-turner with a satisfying ending, contains short chapters and alternates between Before and Now. Overall, it was an enjoyable read and hope you like it as well! Thanks to Kira Peikoff, Netgalley and Crooked Lane Books for the advanced digital copy in exchange an honest review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Katie B

    I'll go ahead and bump this one up to 3.5 stars but it was a tough decision because I do have mixed feelings about this book. It was a quick read that did hold my interest but it got too outlandish for my taste towards the end. This might sound weird but if the author took away some of the psychological thriller aspects of the story and made this a straight up fiction book exploring ethical issues, I probably would have enjoyed it more. Claire Abrams's son died due to a genetic mutati I'll go ahead and bump this one up to 3.5 stars but it was a tough decision because I do have mixed feelings about this book. It was a quick read that did hold my interest but it got too outlandish for my taste towards the end. This might sound weird but if the author took away some of the psychological thriller aspects of the story and made this a straight up fiction book exploring ethical issues, I probably would have enjoyed it more. Claire Abrams's son died due to a genetic mutation. She wants another child but doesn't want to pass on the gene that killed her son. That's where Dr. Robert Nash and the scientist working under him, Jillian Hendricks, can offer some help. They have figured out a way for Claire to carry a baby without passing along the deadly gene. Essentially it would mean the child would have not just two genetic parents, but three. They need to keep it under wraps though as this procedure is against the law. Flash forward 10 years later and Claire's daughter Abigail has submitted a saliva sample to one of those ancestry DNA sites and well let's just say that opens up a gigantic can of worms. The story alternates between the past and present day and follows a few of the key characters. The premise for this one was definitely intriguing and I was fascinated by all the ethical issues brought up in the story. Unfortunately, such a big part of the story involves psychological thriller elements, and for me they fell flat. I'm not going to say you can figure exactly how the story will unfold but you can piece together enough so nothing in the end is all that shocking or surprising. I preferred the first half of the book over the second because towards the end, the story goes a bit off the rails. Although to be fair, over the top situations did create some unique dilemmas for some of the characters. Overall this was an okay read that in my opinion started off strong but started to go downhill after awhile. Thank you to the publisher and BookishFirst for sending me an advance copy in exchange for an honest review!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    There's nothing I love more than a good medical drama mixed with a psychological thriller and I enjoyed this one very much! Claire and Ethan Abrams lost their first child Colton at eight years old from a degenerative disease caused by faulty mitochondria, the energy driving components of our cells. They would dearly love to have another child but while Ethan is prepared to take a chance that another child would not be as badly affected, Claire doesn't think she could go through watching another There's nothing I love more than a good medical drama mixed with a psychological thriller and I enjoyed this one very much! Claire and Ethan Abrams lost their first child Colton at eight years old from a degenerative disease caused by faulty mitochondria, the energy driving components of our cells. They would dearly love to have another child but while Ethan is prepared to take a chance that another child would not be as badly affected, Claire doesn't think she could go through watching another child suffer and die. As the genetic material in mitochondria is only passed on from the mother, she also knows she is responsible for passing on this disease. When she hears of a team of IVF specialists working on an experimental new technique that involves transferring combining mitochondria from a healthy donor into an embryo (known as three parent IVF) she thinks that might be the answer to their prayers. Although the technique is illegal and she knows her husband, a professor of bioethics, would never approve of it, she offers herself as a guinea pig to the IVF team. However, just before her baby is due, news of what they have done is reported to the FDA, leading to the IVF team being charged and Claire fleeing into hiding. The novel starts ten years later with Claire and her daughter Abby are still in hiding when Jillian Hendricks, the IVF scientist is released from jail and manages to find them. She is bitter and twisted and has a plan for revenge and restitution of what should be hers on her mind. A very original and twisty psychological thriller! With thanks to Netgalley and Crooked Lane books for a digital ARC to read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Erin Clemence

    Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Claire Abram’s dream turned into a nightmare when her beloved son, Colton, died at a young age due to a genetic DNA abnormality. Although her husband, Ethan, is desperate to try again for another child, Claire is reluctant to pass on the defective gene to another child. When Claire is introduced to cutting edge fertility Dr. Robert Nash and his protégé Jillian Hendr Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Claire Abram’s dream turned into a nightmare when her beloved son, Colton, died at a young age due to a genetic DNA abnormality. Although her husband, Ethan, is desperate to try again for another child, Claire is reluctant to pass on the defective gene to another child. When Claire is introduced to cutting edge fertility Dr. Robert Nash and his protégé Jillian Hendricks, she finally sees a glimmer of hope. The pair have promised to help her and her husband have a child, without the genetic mutation that resulted in the death of her first son. Although the method is technically illegal, Claire is so desperate she goes against her husband’s coaxing and goes through with the procedure. When her beautiful daughter Abby is born, Claire all too quickly realizes that there was more involved in the fertility procedure than even she was told and now her life, and the life of her daughter, are at risk. A scientific drama, “Mother Knows Best” by Kira Peikoff, takes the world genetic medication and turns it on its heels. A desperate mother, a savvy doctor, and his manipulative yet brilliant research student, is all it takes to make this novel a suspenseful tale of secrets and lies. Claire is an easy character to like, as we see her struggles after the loss of her son, her mental breakdown and finally her fight to regain her sanity and protect her family. The story is told in alternate viewpoints from all of the female protagonists; Claire, Jillian and Abby, and is told in chronological order (which only deserves a mention because it is a process I have not seen in a while and I was starting to miss it!) Although thick with scientific language in parts, this story is addicting and entertaining. Each chapter flows seamlessly into the next, and not once does the plot slow down. The ending is expected and predictable, but not at all disappointing. “Mother Knows Best” is a cutting-edge story, one that is almost futuristic in its scientific advancements (yet equally plausible) and as a result, terrifying. A creative novel with a captivating plot and dark, damaged characters, “Mother Knows Best” is a powerful story that will draw you in right from page one, and will keep you guessing throughout.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Li'l Owl

    FIVE Thought Provoking and Suspenseful Stars! The entire fifth-grade class participated in a genetic experiment through the company MapMyDNA. Each person spit into a tube and received a report of their inherited traits, like whether they had detached earlobes or could taste bitter flavors. We felt cornered into letting her participate. It was easier than answering the questions that would follow, but the test came and went without a hitch." Or did it? *********** FIVE Thought Provoking and Suspenseful Stars! The entire fifth-grade class participated in a genetic experiment through the company MapMyDNA. Each person spit into a tube and received a report of their inherited traits, like whether they had detached earlobes or could taste bitter flavors. We felt cornered into letting her participate. It was easier than answering the questions that would follow, but the test came and went without a hitch." Or did it? *********** Mother Knows Best by Kira Peikoff is a unique, original and thought provoking novel that I thoroughly enjoyed! As is usually the case, I went into the story "blind" without re-reading the blurb so to say that "that is not what I was expecting" is an understatement! In a good way! The characters, storyline, and pace of this book were very well put together. What impressed me most was how the fictional story blended seamlessly with the scientific research and process behind DNA manipulation. The information was technical, detailed, and informative without being overdone with scientific jargon that would lose the reader. For such a complex topic, Kira Peikoff did an outstanding job! This is one of those books that I won't soon forget! With thanks and appreciation to NetGalley, Crooked Lane Books, and Kira Peikoff for giving me this advanced digital copy to read and review.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Mary S. R.

    What. *screams, tears out hair, bites off fingers, hits head into the wall* How HOW THE HELL did I get accepted for an ARC of this? *walks into the ocean while staring at the horizon and drowns. The end.* A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her littlegenerations.There’sclass="gr-hostedUserImg">A*walks*screams, What. *screams, tears out hair, bites off fingers, hits head into the wall* How HOW THE HELL did I get accepted for an ARC of this? *walks into the ocean while staring at the horizon and drowns. The end.* A mother’s worst nightmare, a chance at redemption, and a deadly secret that haunts a family across the generations. There’s only room for one mother in this family. Claire Abrams’s dreams became a nightmare when she passed on a genetic mutation that killed her little boy. Now she wants a second chance to be a mother, and finds it in Robert Nash, a maverick fertility doctor who works under the radar with Jillian Hendricks, a cunning young scientist bent on making her mark—and seducing her boss. Claire, Robert, and Jillian work together to create the world’s first baby with three genetic parents—an unprecedented feat that could eliminate inherited disease. But when word of their illegal experiment leaks to the wrong person, Robert escapes into hiding with the now-pregnant Claire, leaving Jillian to serve out a prison sentence that destroys her future. Ten years later, a spunky girl named Abigail begins to understand that all is not right with the reclusive man and woman she knows as her parents. But the family’s problems are only beginning. Jillian, hardened by a decade of jealousy and loss, has returned—and nothing will stop her from reuniting with the man and daughter who should have been hers. Past, present—and future converge in a mesmerizing psychological thriller from acclaimed bestselling author Kira Peikoff. I received an ARC through NetGalley for an honest review. Many thanks to Crooked Lane Books!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Theresa Alan

    This novel gets a lot of points for originality. Claire has a genetic disease that she passed on to her son, who died at 8 years old after spending his life ill and in a wheelchair. With the help of a doctor and the mitochondria of a woman who doesn’t have Claire’s disease, she and her husband Ethan have the opportunity to have a healthy child that is still theirs, but with some help from extra DNA, meaning the child will have three parents, which is illegal. The suspense of Claire and her new h This novel gets a lot of points for originality. Claire has a genetic disease that she passed on to her son, who died at 8 years old after spending his life ill and in a wheelchair. With the help of a doctor and the mitochondria of a woman who doesn’t have Claire’s disease, she and her husband Ethan have the opportunity to have a healthy child that is still theirs, but with some help from extra DNA, meaning the child will have three parents, which is illegal. The suspense of Claire and her new husband’s life is good. Claire essentially lives in hiding because her face was plastered everywhere when the story came out. When Abby turns 11, she starts to get curious about her ancestry, and, as part of a class project, she and Claire agree to test their DNA. What Claire has been keeping secret leaks out to the very worst person possible. I recommend this book. I enjoyed it. 4.5 stars rounded up. Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book, which RELEASES SEPTEMBER, 10, 2019. For more reviews, please visit http://www.theresaalan.net/blog

  13. 5 out of 5

    Monika Sadowski

    Easy and quick read. Subject very interesting – genetic engineering in humans. Mother will do anything to protect her child and then the child grows up and wants some answers. I enjoyed this fast-past psychological thriller. Thank you to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    The Cats’ Mother

    Mother Knows Best is a well written medical + domestic thriller set in New York State about the lengths two very different women to achieve their heart’s desire using groundbreaking reproductive technology. It was a quick easy read and I enjoyed it, despite the very predictable plot twists and overly convenient ending. I had not come across this author before but would be open to reading more of her work. Science journalist Claire has been hiding away in the country for eleven years, terrified o Mother Knows Best is a well written medical + domestic thriller set in New York State about the lengths two very different women to achieve their heart’s desire using groundbreaking reproductive technology. It was a quick easy read and I enjoyed it, despite the very predictable plot twists and overly convenient ending. I had not come across this author before but would be open to reading more of her work. Science journalist Claire has been hiding away in the country for eleven years, terrified of the day her nemesis, Jillian Hendricks, will come for her daughter, Abby, and reveal her dark secret - that Abby is the world’s first three-parent child. Conceived in an illegal experiment by IVF, Abby is the result of a new technique, designed to prevent the transmission of the damaged mitochondrial DNA that killed Claire’s first son, Colton, leaving her emotionally shattered and desperate for another baby, but only if it will be healthy. The reproductive specialist, Robert Nash, only wants to help carriers to safely become parents, but his manipulative assistant Jilly sees Abby’s birth as a route to fame, fortune and a relationship with a handsome doctor, so when her plan goes awry and she is left to take the fall, she plans her revenge... Told in first person present by Claire and Jillian, both in the past and today, and 11 year old Abby now, this was both a strength of the narrative as we get to witness the same situation from three very different viewpoints, but meant I had very little sympathy for any of them as both adults are monstrously selfish, as well as reckless and idiotic - and Abby is not much better. Each does whatever she wants with no regard for the consequences for anyone else, then will blithely lie to get out of trouble. The author has framed the medical discovery (which is real, although I don’t know how far the technology has been used to date in humans) as a breakthrough unreasonably stifled by conservative American moral concerns, thereby leading to unnecessary suffering. Personally, while I have sympathy for affected families, rules and close monitoring are there for a reason, and the way the trio go about creating Abby is unforgivable. Of course it all turns out fine for the purposes of a (spoiler alert) happy ending but it does not excuse what they did and the outcome could’ve been very different. No one has a right to a baby especially not when the process is driven by such unethical reasons. I don’t think you need any knowledge of genetics or medicine - or even to understand what mitochondria are, to enjoy this, as the author does an excellent job of explaining the process without extraneous or boring details, but educating readers about medical developments which we are sure to hear more about in the future. The build up of tension was very well done, as we doubt Claire’s sanity and wonder exactly how far the deranged Jilly will go when she finally turns up. I found many of the characters’ actions to be completely implausible, but if you suspend disbelief and go along for the ride, and are happy to accept the highly contrived ending, this is a good read. I was going to round my 3.5 down for the FPP but am feeling generous so 4 stars it is. My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the arc which allowed me to give an honest review, and apologies for missing the publication deadline which was last week.

  15. 5 out of 5

    ♛ Garima ♛

    Rating: 5 stars Trigger: Child mortality Short review: I wasn't planning to read this at all. But after I got copy from netgalley, I gave cursory glance at opening chapter and I was hooked. 5 hours later, I finished the entire book in single sitting. Abby is unique child who shares not 2 but 3 parents' DNA. 2 Eggs taken and fused to perfection (from 2 donors - 2 mothers) and 1 sperm (1 father) created perfect embryo, past 8 months that frankenbaby is Abby. Going back and forth, the book is divided into perfect balance inclumortalityShortstarsTrigger: Rating: 5 stars Trigger: Child mortality Short review: I wasn't planning to read this at all. But after I got copy from netgalley, I gave cursory glance at opening chapter and I was hooked. 5 hours later, I finished the entire book in single sitting. Abby is unique child who shares not 2 but 3 parents' DNA. 2 Eggs taken and fused to perfection (from 2 donors - 2 mothers) and 1 sperm (1 father) created perfect embryo, past 8 months that frankenbaby is Abby. Going back and forth, the book is divided into perfect balance including multiple POVs. Review in image/gif: Recommended: Yes Aftermath: (possible spoilers) There was historical moment where few scientists created baby in a petri dish and even though at the time, it was an immoral experiment, nowadays IVF is one of the preferable methods for people who failed to conceive naturally. One might think this experiment and success of IVF should be expanded and we choose all favorable genes for future generation creating perfect children for tomorrow - where does this genetic modification end? Is there any moral compass to measure the happiness a child brings to people who might have lost all the hopes? It's not like this book actually delves into morality issue as the story is pretty fast pace without giving readers chance to think about it. But you end up thinking the same after reading this book.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Tucker

    Many thanks to for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review | Goodreads | Blog | Twitch | Pinterest | Buy this book

  17. 4 out of 5

    Crumb

    A debut psychological thriller! This book was amazing! I don't want to reveal too much about the plot because I feel like less is more in this case. I really enjoy books with in depth character development and this novel definitely had interesting characters. There was also an unreliable narrator, which I always love. I can't emphasize enough how surprised I was by this book! There were many twists, as well. I'm a huge fan of a well-executed twist. Kira Peikoff is an author A debut psychological thriller! This book was amazing! I don't want to reveal too much about the plot because I feel like less is more in this case. I really enjoy books with in depth character development and this novel definitely had interesting characters. There was also an unreliable narrator, which I always love. I can't emphasize enough how surprised I was by this book! There were many twists, as well. I'm a huge fan of a well-executed twist. Kira Peikoff is an author to watch! I am anxiously awaiting her next book!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Dennis

    Just because I'm giving Mother Knows Best 3 stars, don't think that I didn't enjoy it. While very predictable, it still was a fun and very fast-paced read! It follows the same mystery/thriller format that readers are used to, which could either work for or against you, depending on the type of book you like to pick up. Within 25% into the story, I knew exactly what was going to happen—and it happened. That being said, Kira Peikoff's writing is awesome and I would 100% pick up another book by her. I think th Just because I'm giving Mother Knows Best 3 stars, don't think that I didn't enjoy it. While very predictable, it still was a fun and very fast-paced read! It follows the same mystery/thriller format that readers are used to, which could either work for or against you, depending on the type of book you like to pick up. Within 25% into the story, I knew exactly what was going to happen—and it happened. That being said, Kira Peikoff's writing is awesome and I would 100% pick up another book by her. I think this one will be a fun, crazy, thriller for some light reading!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Linda Strong

    Her son died from a genetic mutation that was passed on to him from his mother, Claire. Ten years later, she has a daughter ... free of any genetic mutation. How was this possible? It's a secret ... a secret that could put Claire, her doctor Robert Nash, and his assistant Jill at great risk. They have discovered how to eliminate inherited diseases ... but anything they do is entirely illegal. When word of their illegal experiment leaks to the wrong person, Robert escapes in Her son died from a genetic mutation that was passed on to him from his mother, Claire. Ten years later, she has a daughter ... free of any genetic mutation. How was this possible? It's a secret ... a secret that could put Claire, her doctor Robert Nash, and his assistant Jill at great risk. They have discovered how to eliminate inherited diseases ... but anything they do is entirely illegal. When word of their illegal experiment leaks to the wrong person, Robert escapes into hiding with the now-pregnant Claire, leaving Jillian to serve out a prison sentence that destroys her future. But Jill is now free .. and she wants her daughter ... and the doctor. This is a complex journey into what could happen in our own future. The question is ... just because we can.. does it mean we should?. For every leap into the unknown, there are consequences ... and Claire, Robert and Jill are going to discover just how dangerous those consequences can be. Well written, part science fiction, part crime thriller, this one is guaranteed to keep the reader glued to each and every page from the very first page to the very last. The story is told in alternating viewpoints and the pace never once slows down. The characters are somewhat credible ... but some of the story doesn't quite reach that level. An interesting and entertaining read nonetheless. Many thanks to the author / Crooked Lane Books / Netgalley for the digital copy of this thriller. Read and reviewed voluntarily, opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ayesha (The Fifth Marauder)

    4.25 stars! I was extremely excited to receive this ARC via Netgalley, given the rave reviews I had read earlier, and I'm glad to say; THE HYPE IS WELL DESERVED! This was a fascinating, well thought out slow burn thriller. I loved the attention to detail the author showed, and how she explained complex phenomena in simple terms. While I'm proud to say I guessed the major plot twist of the book, it did not tone down my enthusiasm in the least. It was an absolute pleasure to 4.25 stars! I was extremely excited to receive this ARC via Netgalley, given the rave reviews I had read earlier, and I'm glad to say; THE HYPE IS WELL DESERVED! This was a fascinating, well thought out slow burn thriller. I loved the attention to detail the author showed, and how she explained complex phenomena in simple terms. While I'm proud to say I guessed the major plot twist of the book, it did not tone down my enthusiasm in the least. It was an absolute pleasure to read, and I can't wait for even more of the author's work!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)

    This psychological/medical thriller is such a surprise for me and this is why. As an avid thriller reader, I realize that a lot of books can seem predictable or suspension of reality will be needed and sometimes I don't care and other times it grates on me. Maybe it depends on mood? Maybe it depends on just how far that shark jumped or if there's absolutely no originality after a certain point. Who really knows? With Mother Knows Best - Peikoff gives us something pretty original... and while I D This psychological/medical thriller is such a surprise for me and this is why. As an avid thriller reader, I realize that a lot of books can seem predictable or suspension of reality will be needed and sometimes I don't care and other times it grates on me. Maybe it depends on mood? Maybe it depends on just how far that shark jumped or if there's absolutely no originality after a certain point. Who really knows? With Mother Knows Best - Peikoff gives us something pretty original... and while I DO think it was absolutely predictable AND you had to suspend reality a bit (or do you really?? hmmm...), I thoroughly enjoyed the ride and fairly unique... even if it still runs on the story line we see a lot - mom does whatever she can to conceive and then to protect said child, past comes to bite her in the ass... yada yada. How far would YOU go for that perfectly healthy child? These days, with science/advances in medicine it seems you can practically special order your child to your exact specifications. But how moral is this? This is still a very binge worthy and fun read. The concept is quite interesting and medically, I'd be curious to know if this was actually possible and/or what laws, etc would interfere. How far is too far? I'm so intrigued! I'll surely be picking up more Peikoff in the future and have already looked at some past releases. Enjoy, readers! 3.5 stars.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Shelby

    Then: Claire and her husband, Ethan, are still grieving the loss of Colton, their 8-year old son who died due to a hereditary mitochondrial condition. Now the couple wants to expand their family and open their hearts to another child, but Claire is worried about passing her genes onto yet another child, only to meet the same fate as Colton. So instead, Claire seeks out an experimental doctor that is using cutting edge science to prevent hereditary conditions via mitochondria. Instead of having 2 Then: Claire and her husband, Ethan, are still grieving the loss of Colton, their 8-year old son who died due to a hereditary mitochondrial condition. Now the couple wants to expand their family and open their hearts to another child, but Claire is worried about passing her genes onto yet another child, only to meet the same fate as Colton. So instead, Claire seeks out an experimental doctor that is using cutting edge science to prevent hereditary conditions via mitochondria. Instead of having 2 parents, Claire and Ethan’s baby will have 3. And since Ethan is against this type of experiment, Claire lies to him. Whatever it takes to get her baby, right? Now: Claire, her husband and their 11-year old daughter, Abby, are making their yearly visit to Colton’s favorite place, in honor of the 21st birthday he’ll never have. But Claire is startled when she sees a familiar face that she hoped she’d never see again for the rest of her life. And seeing her sends Claire spiraling into a mental state that concerns her husband and daughter. Abby is curious about her heritage and signs up for a DNA testing website. Her results bring up more questions than they provide answers to her. But when she brings up her results to her parents, their reaction isn’t what she would’ve expected. They don’t just seem surprised, but they seem concerned—almost scared, even. One woman, two lives, 11-years apart. A past that seemed so far away is now coming back to haunt Claire after all these years. Mother Knows Best by Kira Peikoff is a sci-fi mystery with a unique premise. I am always intrigued by books that involve DNA manipulation or DNA testing (like in John Marrs’ The One). I also really enjoy stories that center around mothers/pregnancy. So this story had the perfect recipe for pure enjoyment. But unfortunately it fell flat. I guessed almost every plot twist and saw where the story arc was going from the get go. I enjoyed this read but was left wanting more. 3/5 stars. Thank you NetGalley, Crooked Lane Books and Kira Peikoff for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly Belle

    Can we talk about this cover? Because it is perfection. The braid, the title, the way the two are intertwined. I wanted this book before I even knew what it was about, and thankfully, the insides lived up to the out. A well-written, compelling read that blurs real-life science with fiction. I flew through this one!

  24. 4 out of 5

    ♠️ TABI ♠️

    not a fan of thrillers but I'm a fan of Mary S. R. and I pretty much read whatever she tells me is good xD

  25. 4 out of 5

    OutlawPoet

    So, I confess that I found this book very interesting, and almost never exciting. The concept was unique. I did find myself wishing for a bit more insight into the science behind all of this. Instead, we focused more on the obsessive histrionics of one of the people involved in this drama. I didn't care for the characters - even Abby grated on me after a while. However, I was still curious enough that I wanted to see how it all would end. It could be t So, I confess that I found this book very interesting, and almost never exciting. The concept was unique. I did find myself wishing for a bit more insight into the science behind all of this. Instead, we focused more on the obsessive histrionics of one of the people involved in this drama. I didn't care for the characters - even Abby grated on me after a while. However, I was still curious enough that I wanted to see how it all would end. It could be that the various POV characters mixed with the various timelines did me in. Every time I found myself drawn into one person or timeline, the author would switch to another. I do think that many people will enjoy this one - especially the unique concept - but I was left just a little cold.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Rissa

    Mother Knows Best We jump back and forth before Claire and her daughter Abby. We see how Claire became the cold heartless women that she is now. We also see Abby trying to find more out about her family history which causes her to find some interesting information out about her mother or the women claiming to be her mother. It was slow and predictable but I still enjoyed the characters and the story. Thank you so much to Crooked lane books via netgalley for sending me an ARC copy of m Mother Knows Best We jump back and forth before Claire and her daughter Abby. We see how Claire became the cold heartless women that she is now. We also see Abby trying to find more out about her family history which causes her to find some interesting information out about her mother or the women claiming to be her mother. It was slow and predictable but I still enjoyed the characters and the story. Thank you so much to Crooked lane books via netgalley for sending me an ARC copy of mother knows best by Kira Peikoff. This will be released on September 10 2019 All opinions are my own.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    MOTHER KNOWS BEST is a rocket-paced thriller that dives deep into questions about science, family, and how far we’ll go to protect the people we love the most. Peikoff brings her extensive scientific knowledge to the pages of this taut, smart, and compelling novel. Don't miss it!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Figgy

    Review to come. This was a buddy read with Mary S. R. and it was a good one for this purpose... lots of twists to try and figure out. Mary figured out one of the twists, and I figured out another (early on, but the book had me second-guessing myself the rest of the book). The Rapunzel themes were minimal, and I predicted one of the biggest twists to the book, but it was an interesting read and a speculative story set around existing tech, and built around the actually progr Review to come. This was a buddy read with Mary S. R. and it was a good one for this purpose... lots of twists to try and figure out. Mary figured out one of the twists, and I figured out another (early on, but the book had me second-guessing myself the rest of the book). The Rapunzel themes were minimal, and I predicted one of the biggest twists to the book, but it was an interesting read and a speculative story set around existing tech, and built around the actually progresses in that tech back in the early naughties.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Nursebookie

    "MOTHER KNOWS BEST” BY Kira Peikoff Claire Abrams is a journalist who carries a rare genetic mutation that is passed down to her offspring. The death of her son Colton at the young age of 8 yo was so devastating for her that lead to her depression and desperation. The only way she can have a child is if there is a way to genetically alter her DNA. Through her support group, she found and connected with Dr. Robert Nash, a brilliant fertility IVF doctor and Jillian Hendricks, a Harvard "MOTHER KNOWS BEST” BY Kira Peikoff Claire Abrams is a journalist who carries a rare genetic mutation that is passed down to her offspring. The death of her son Colton at the young age of 8 yo was so devastating for her that lead to her depression and desperation. The only way she can have a child is if there is a way to genetically alter her DNA. Through her support group, she found and connected with Dr. Robert Nash, a brilliant fertility IVF doctor and Jillian Hendricks, a Harvard trained researcher who were able to genetically manipulate DNA from 3 people, which is not only against the law but also highly unethical. Claire’s husband Nathan who is head of Ethics at Columbia discovered what happened and reported the crime which leads to criminal charges for the three. Jillian serves three years in prison, while pregnant Claire and Dr. Nash flee and hide with new identities. Abby, Claire’s daughter, grows up very healthy and have made it to her double digits surpassing Colton. One of Abby’s class assignment is to send their DNA swab sample. The results lead to more questions from Abby and the unfolding of the secrets Claire and Nash tried to hide from over a decade ago is now catching up to them. Jillian over the years has been planning her revenge and will not stop at nothing to get back what she felt was taken from her and the injustice she suffered through. MOTHER KNOWS BEST is a fantastic and fast-paced read about a hot topic that is current and timely regarding designer DNA and the ethical questions on these scientific advancements. Besides the unique premise, the book is an amazing psychological thriller that focuses on moral dilemmas, ethical questions, and the cost people go through to get what they want. The story is told in alternating narratives between Claire, Jillian and Abby. Claire and Jillian’s narrative tells about the past and present viewpoints. The stories by both these women were told with such amazing passion and visceral emotion that will keep you turning the pages unable to put down for major cliff hangers between the story lines. Abby’s narrative tells of the lies and deception that is affecting the family dynamics and relationships of the characters connecting the women’s stories. I enjoyed the action pack sequence and some of the eye-opening and gasping surprises that Peikoff added to the story line. I was captivated from the beginning and did not let go until I devoured this book to the end. I highly enjoyed this read and recommend it highly!! I voluntary reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from Netgalley and Crooked Lane Books. All views expressed are my own honest and objective opinion.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Figgy

    Aaaand now I have that song from Tangled stuck in my head... Thank you, Mary S. R. for the tip on how to get the gif to show up!

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