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on 4 October 2010
Jodi Picoult books are one of my guilty pleasures but this one left me feeling very uncomfortable indeed. She often chooses complex domestic situations and dilemmas that provoke interesting moral quandaries. However this novel seems to suggest that as long as one is a middle class mother who loves her child then murder is OK. Not only that if Dad joins in that is OK too. I wonder if such latitude would be given by readers to revenge gang killings in a poor area. There is not even any evidence of either parent suffering, rather than just declaring, guilt. JP recently wondered why Jonathon Franzen is talked of as a great writer rather than female authors, presumably such as she. I suggest that he avoids the emotionally untruthful sentimentality of this book.
It has spoilt me for reading more which is a pity. It is as if something has been revealed about a moral world that I want no part of- rather like police stories where violence on the part of policeman is deemed acceptable and even desirable because they are portrayed as 'on the right side'. Being a mother does not confer righteousness.