Susan Spindler

300 pages March 2021 Proofs in English Original publisher: ViragoThriller

Surrogate is a compelling and topical psychological drama that explores marriage, fertility and female identity.

Ruth Furnival is a successful television executive with a perfect life: a nice house in London, a lawyer husband and two grown-up daughters. But at 55, with an empty nest and the menopause behind her, she feels restless and dissatisfied.

After multiple rounds of failed IVF, her eldest daughter Lauren has been told that the only chance for her and her husband to have their own child is surrogacy. Overwhelmed by the expense, they have run out of options. So when Ruth discovers that, with the right dose of hormones, she could carry their baby, out of desperation they agree.

Buoyed up by her sense of purpose, Ruth’s life disintegrates around her as the pregnancy progresses: her husband moves out, her TV company is near bankruptcy and Lauren can’t contain her corrosive envy. Isolated and alone in the pregnancy, Ruth starts to unravel…


“Moving and exciting and moral – immensely intelligent.”  – Tessa Hadley

“Fans of ‘mum noir’ are in for a treat.” – Mail Online

“A fascinating, compulsive and quietly transgressive novel that casts a keen, exacting eye over the dynamics of a family in extremis.” ― Jessica Moor, author of Keeper

“A darkly humorous, thoughtful and thought provoking novel, along with being an absolute “up all night” compulsive read. I loved it.” ― Kate Hamer

“A brilliantly structured, fast-paced and addictively compelling read. I loved the ending most of all.” ― Rachel Joyce

“A piercingly honest view of the flesh and blood of women’s lives and the imperfect tangles of family relationships. These real, believable and maddeningly blind characters make us feel for them more and more as the story gathers pace towards a brilliant heart-stopping conclusion.” ― Maggie Gee

Watch the trailer