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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Written 10 years ago
About half way through the book I felt as many of the previous reviewers did, that this was not Jodi Picoult's best work and that the impetus had waned a bit. I remember feeling this way half way through "Keeping Faith", but that turned into a gripping page turner towards the end and for me the same was true for 'Mercy'.

Jamie McDonald smothers his terminally...
Published on 4 Feb 2007 by DubaiReader

versus
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not her best book!
I have read nearly all of Jodi Picoult's other books and they were all fantastic, although I think this may be the exception.

The story follows a man who kills his wife because she was dying of terminal cancer and asked him to kill her. He turns himself in to the police. It's a thought provoking and controversial theme and there aren't many books covering the...
Published on 28 Aug 2006 by M. Todd


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No Mercy, 23 Oct 2006
By 
S. R. Barrow "RubySue" (Cardiff, Wales, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mercy (Hardcover)
What a huge disappointment! Having found My Sister's Keeper and Salem Falls riveting, I relished the prosepct of another JP novel. Characters were well drawn but the dual plots vied for attention all the way through and were rounded off far too predictably to make this a JP classic. Where was the shock ending? I was left feeling confused and cheated.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Everyone has their off days, 2 Jan 2010
By 
Dinah85 "Dinah93" (Cleveland,UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
Mercy focuses on the issue of euthanasia, and the balance of love within a relationship. The storyline follows two couples, Allie and Cam McDonald, and Jamie and Maggie McDonald. Cam McDonald is the police chief of Wheelock, Massachusetts and has been married to Allie for 7 years. Allie runs the town flower shop, and spends her day thinking of ways to make her husbands life easier. Allie is completely devoted to Cam, and there is a clear imbalance within the relationship. Even the stories that are told of their early relationship increase the sense that she gave up a lot of her own personality to be the perfect wife to Cam. This made me feel quite uneasy, and loose respect for Allie. I do not believe this was intentional on the part of the author, as Allie increasingly appears to be the central character and has a strength of will towards the end that comes from nowhere and is hard to believe. Allie however seems like a good woman, trying her best and wishing her husband was as happy with his lot in life as she is. Characterisation generally is weak, Cam seems a poor role model for the citizens, constantly wishing to be elsewhere and escape his own life, which seems pretty good in reality.

The character of Mia enters the town the same day as Jamie and Maggie. However the reason for her appearance in town is never explored, and neither is her apparent connection to Cam. This turns their relationship into a torrid affair which I had no interest in reading about, there is nothing exciting or new about extra-marital sex. By the time Allie discovered the affair I had no interest in whether she stayed or left. Despite, or possibly due to, the spoiler at the start of the book, I strongly suspected she would stay. What happens to Mia after she suddenly and for no reason looses interest in Cam is also not explored.

The main storyline is supposedly about Jamie McDonald's arrest due to killing his wife, Maggie, who suffered with terminal cancer. The portrait painted of Maggie is one of a fairly selfish woman, who Jamie spent his life trying to please, drawing parallels between his relationship and that of his cousin Cam and Allie. This storyline is very poorly explored compared to the rambling sections on Mia and Cam or the day to day mundane details of Allie's life. I enjoy reading Jodie Picoult as she usually fully explores the legal and moral arguments of important ethical debates, however I felt this was only lightly explored, and I did not experience the same build up and tension as the court case drew closer I usually expect with her books. Jamie seems to care little about whether he is acquitted, and his character experiences such strong personality swings I am left wondering if he is mentally imbalanced. Jamie begins seeing Maggie's ghost towards the end of the book, I wonder if this is a sense of guilt or regret manifesting in physical form, or if he has become a little crazy as a result of loosing the woman who made up his entire life. Again however this is not explored.

Language seemed simplistic and ordinary in places, I did not feel that it pitched to an adult of average intelligence and it was a quick read despite being nearly 500 pages.

I am a big fan of Jodie Picoult, however I felt this book was not her best work, and would not recommend it to a reader interesting in exploring her work. Even as a fan, I can not say I was impressed by this book, and do not intend to re-read this. She did not influence my views or make me think further about euthanasia, and I expected more from such a good author.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too Drawn Out, 10 Sep 2008
This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
This is the first Picoult novelI have read and I would read another. The characters are well drawn and you can feel some empathy for them, then suddenly they become 2dimensional and start doing things which just seem to be totally out of the character described earlier. I agree with previous reviews that the Scottish flashbacks and 'connection' to Wheelock are pointless, for a community which looks up to Cam and respects his position, he has very little interaction with them! The story of Jamie and Maggie seemed very much on the periphery of the main action and juxtaposing euthanasia and extra marital affairs just didn't ring true to me. I think the court case really dragged and found the ending a little bit corny. The novel felt a bit like a pitch for a film/screenplay. I have been recommended to read other Jodi Picoult books and so, although I didn't love this one, it was still readable and I would read another novel by this author.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading but only once., 8 May 2008
This review is from: Mercy (Hardcover)
Having read all of Picoult's other books, I can safely say that this is the only one that did not stick in my head. Unlike my personal favourites 'My Sister's Keeper', 'Nineteen Minutes' and 'Salem Falls', this book seemed to lack substance. This remains the only Picoult's book I have never been tempted to reread, which, as a vociferous reader and Diehard Picoult fan is hardly a recommendation. This being said, Picoult's sensitive and thought-provoking writing-style is still evident and saves a frankly quite poor story from becoming entirely boring through sheer eloquence.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not her best, but still quite un-put-downable, 24 Mar 2008
By 
Mrs. Erica Edwards "reading rocks" (Scotland, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
The first Jodi Picoult I ever read was The Pact, which I totally loved, and I have since read four more of her novels, Mercy included. Mercy is not as good as some of her others, but it is much more un-put-downable than Vanishing Acts, with which I toiled to finish.

I quite liked the two stories which were running side by side in Mercy, that of the mercy killing of Maggie who has cancer by her devoted husband and that of the affair between Cam and Mia, juxtaposed with Cam's relationship with his wife. These two plots made you think about the balance between people who are in relationships - is there always someone who loves more? I was also pleasantly surprised that Cam's wife, Allie, got really angry when she discovered her husband's infidelity, rather than remaining a "door mat." She seemed to become so much stronger and I do think that this could happen after a weak spouse finds out how she has been betrayed. I then enjoyed watching how Cam reacted to this extreme change in his wife's feelings and actions towards him. I felt that it was all quite believable.

Some reviewers have complained about the predictable trial and Jodi Picoult is an author who does follow a formula. However, I did look forward to this and the novel's conclusion.

Had I read this novel as my first Picoult, I may not have returned to her so many times, but as I know how amazing she can be (The Pact, My Sister's Keeper and Salem Falls) I can take Mercy for what it is: a reasonably gripping book which is a fairly enjoyable read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed it., 17 Mar 2008
This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
I'm obviously in the minority here. This was the first 'Jodi' book that I have read and I couldn't put it down all weekend, I loved it. Can't wait to get get my hands on more of her stories, as other reviewers seem to think that Mercy is one of her weaker novels. I shall have to the save the rest for a long holiday or nothing will get done.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this book, 26 Oct 2007
This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
This is the only Jodie Picault's book I have read so far but I can say that is not going to be the only one for long. I really loved the book, for a few days I could not let it down and it made me think a lot about love and forgiveness. I would definitely recommend it.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not the best I've read, 17 Aug 2006
By 
This review is from: Mercy (Hardcover)
I've read all of Jodi Picoults books and I am usually engrossed by the story. However this ione was a disappointment. It was a predictable story with not much excitement. If you are a fan do not read this as you will be left feeling hard done by.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars completely real with a touch of magic, 12 May 2001
By A Customer
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This review is from: Mercy (Paperback)
this is a novel i have really longed to read and i have not been disapointed. jodi picoult brings home the goods as always! a man ends the painful life of his wife who has a terminal illness because he loves her too much to see her in pain. He does it in a town where his cousin is the police chief and hopes for compassion although he still has to stand trial and face the prejudices of the New England towns folk.This story will make you cry because it touches onto things that have some relevances to everyones lives and yet in true Jodi Picoult style has an aspect of magic and a mini miracle which we all long to find. Totally absorbing, showing strength of human character and how deeply someone and love.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Cliched, 2 Oct 2007
This review is from: Mercy (Hardcover)
To be honest I haven't actually finished reading this book, and it's unlikely I will! One of only 2 books I've ever read that I haven't wanted to finish!

As a Scottish person, I find all of her references to "clans" to be very cliched and dated! I would go so far as to say it's actually making my blood boil to read it!

My first Jodi Picoult book was 19 Minutes, which I absolutely loved!! I'm afraid I can't say the same about Mercy!!
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