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Hold My Girl: A Novel
Charlene Carr


For fans of Jodi Picoult, Kate Hewitt and Ashley Audrain, a heart-wrenching novel about two women whose eggs are switched during IVF  

Katherine is a woman full of obsessions. Everything clean, everything perfect, all the time. After seven years of trying—and failing—to conceive, she finally gives birth to Rose, her IVF miracle child. But she’s afraid that Rose may not be her daughter; her pale skin doesn’t match Katherine’s own. 

Tess never got her happy ending. She took on IVF alongside Katherine and a group of hopeful mothers, but her daughter, Hanna, was stillborn. After a series of poor choices, she’s divorced, broke and stuck in a job that’s below her skill set. 

Ten months later, Katherine and Tess get a call from the fertility clinic that reveals shocking news: the two women’s eggs were switched. While Katherine’s perfect life beings to crumble around her, for Tess it’s the glimmer of hope she needs to get her life back on track. But it will take a custody battle to decide who deserves to be Rose’s mother, a battle that will push both women to the brink.

With themes of racial identity, loss and betrayal, this emotional novel centred around a difficult moral question beautifully explores the complexities of motherhood. 


Charlene Carr lives in Nova Scotia with her husband and daughter. She has published nine novels and recently received grants from Arts Nova Scotia and the Canada Council for the Arts to write her next one.


“Hold My Girl deftly explores the tribulations of motherhood through a compelling narrative that portrays both sides of a headline-making controversy about biology, motherhood, and race. Thoughtful, tense, and affecting, Charlene Carr has skillfully crafted a page-turning story with compassion at its centre."
-- Ashley Audrain, New York Times bestselling author of The Push

"In Hold My Girl, Charlene Carr unflinchingly pulls the reader into the broken hearts and spiraling minds of two mothers who are thrust into an unimaginable situation. With poignant insight and—at times—unsettling accuracy, Carr has crafted not only a compelling, intensely propulsive page turner, but a deeply emotional exploration into the very essence of what it means to be a mother. I was spellbound from start to finish."  -- Heather Marshall, author of the #1 instant bestseller Looking For Jane

“Charlene Carr pulls off an extraordinary emotional tightrope walk with these imperfect characters and the impossible situation they’re thrust into. Each fresh twist had me shifting my sympathies until the very end. Hold My Girl is a beautiful, unflinching examination of what it means to be a mother.”  -- Shelby Van Pelt, New York Times bestselling author of Remarkably Bright Creatures

Hold My Girl is an emotionally complex, absolute triumph of a novel that raises thought-provoking questions about what it means to be a mother, a wife, and a friend. Charlene Carr writes fearlessly and brilliantly from the heart about motherly love, loss, and difficult moral choices. Her characters are so real, you ache for them as they struggle to do the right thing in impossible circumstances. I was riveted from the first page and couldn’t stop reading. I needed to know how this beautiful, heart-wrenching book would end. It’s an absolute must-read.” -- Julianne MacLean, USA Today bestselling author of A Curve in the Road

Hold My Girl is a deeply resonant story of loss, infertility, and the complexities of motherhood. . . .For those who have experienced the loss of a baby or those who have endured the trials of IVF, you will see yourself reflected in both Katherine and Tess. For readers who haven’t, you will find renewed compassion and empathy for those in your life who have. I’ve been waiting for a book like this to land on my nightstand, and I am grateful it finally exists. I couldn't have loved it more.” -- Joanne Gallant, author of A Womb in the Shape of a Heart

“Charlene Carr’s poignant novel, Hold My Girl, holds nothing back in the story of two mothers and one daughter. A story that is both every mother’s dream and every mother’s nightmare, Carr bares the soul of her characters in ways few writers can as she exposes their darkest secrets and desires. An emotional and thought-provoking read I will not soon forget.”  -- Barbara Conrey, USA Today bestselling author of Nowhere Near Goodbye

[H]  Sourcebooks Landmark  /  October 10, 2023

1.05" H x 9.25" L x 6.36" W (1.21 lbs) 400 pages