Different Genes is the first full-length novel from author Claire Baldry. I was interested in reading it as it has adoption as one of its themes.
The novel opens with a funeral scene and we meet Simon who is a stranger watching from a distance. He meets a male mourner and in a random conversation discovers a secret that one of the other mourners does not know.
What will happen when Simon meets and becomes romantically entangled with Louise who the secret concerns? Will he keep the secret or share it? What journeys of the physical and emotional kind will the couple go on together? Are things ever as they appear to be?
I enjoyed this book and loved that we had older characters finding love in their sixties after disappointing previous marriages. I also enjoyed grief described so well and the adoption story was fascinating and a reminder of how things have changed in the adoption field over the decades. It was good to see a woman in her own right with her own interests rather than someone thinking she needed a man.
My frustration with this novel was that I think it could have been longer as it was only around 200 pages long so neither a short story or an average sized novel. I wanted to witness more of the characters particularly Simon’s ex-wife and children.
I did enjoy how suddenly in the middle of the book we were transported to a different era and a back story that differed so much from what Louise identified with. I also loved how there was a present day mystery going on too with Bob a family friend.
I guess I am saying Different Genes was good but I was left wanting more.