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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mesmerising (4.5 stars)
As a big Jodi Picoult fan I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book. I have read all of her other novels and enjoyed them (barring `Songs of The Humpback Whale' which I found to be a bit bland), so it was safe to say that I was anticipating an excellent read here.

Picoult definitely doesn't disappoint in this excellent story of a fractured family, hidden...
Published on 5 Mar. 2012 by Nicola F (Nic)

versus
58 of 65 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you absolutely love Jodi, you'll, 'err well, quite like this...
Jodi Picoult has decided to lift the bar with `Lone Wolf'. She offers her legions of loyal readers the most substantial, impressively educational and well-researched effort so far. There is often a cute canine in JP's novels but here we have literally packs, of wild and captive wolves, the largest members of the dog family.

The main moral drama/dilemma is...
Published on 28 Dec. 2011 by Katharine Kirby


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mesmerising (4.5 stars), 5 Mar. 2012
By 
Nicola F (Nic) (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
As a big Jodi Picoult fan I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book. I have read all of her other novels and enjoyed them (barring `Songs of The Humpback Whale' which I found to be a bit bland), so it was safe to say that I was anticipating an excellent read here.

Picoult definitely doesn't disappoint in this excellent story of a fractured family, hidden secrets and a horrific moral dilemma faced by an estranged brother and sister. I loved every word- the characterisation was excellent, settings believable and it really does make you think what you would do if you ever found yourself in a similar situation.

The book revolves around Cara and her father Luke, both injured in a car accident that unfortunately leaves Luke on a ventilator with a practically nil chance of waking- and even if he does, chances are he will be brain damaged. As Luke was a famous naturalist who has integrated himself into wild wolf packs, his estranged son questions whether his father would ever want to live such a different way of life. Cara meanwhile is determined to prove that any life at all, is at least worth living...

As the book unfolds, family secrets are brought to the fore which only adds further drama to the proceedings. Chapters are told from alternate characters perspectives which really adds a sense of tension to the story, as well as a degree of empathy and understanding as to what the family are going through.

I can concede other reviewer's reservations with this book however: first time readers may find her depth of detail and research slightly off-putting and indeed overwhelming at times, though I personally found it relevant to the plot; Picoult tells a narrative from Luke's perspective, in which the symbolism of the wolf-pack mirrors events occurring in his own family at the time. I found this to be an excellent device within the story with just enough level of detail around wolf packs to keep me interested, as well as educating me.

I have to admit that this book moves at a slightly slower pace than some of her earlier novels too, which other long time readers have highlighted. It is also more `clean cut' with its moral issue, in that suggestions right from the start of the story indicate the right decision to be made in the long term, though the journey in getting there is still a worthwhile narrative and (in my opinion) very worth a read.

I have deducted half a star merely because the supposed 'revelations' within the book were a little bit predictable. I suppose I expected a bit more twists and turns- this is a Jodi book after all! That is my only criticism of the novel however.

If you have not read a Picoult novel before then I would perhaps urge you to be a bit cautious in trying this one first- it is very different from some of her others. I would suggest starting with `Nineteen Minutes' or `Change of Heart' first and then move on to this one afterwards if you enjoy her style of writing. If you are a Picoult fan though, then you will enjoy it.
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100 of 103 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Read, 16 Jan. 2012
By 
C Hicks "Salisbury Books" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
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Lone Wolf is the story of a family brought back together through a terrible accident. When Luke Warren is bringing his teenage daughter, Cara, home from a party, the two of them crash, leaving Cara with a broken shoulder and Luke in a coma. Luke's ex-wife, who has remarried and has a new young family, calls their eldest child, son Edward who has been abroad and estranged for six years and he returns home.

There are, as always with Picoult's novels, many strands running through the novel and the story is told from several characters' perspectives. Luke Warren is a man obsessed with wolves and the study of their lifestyle - to the extent that he left his family and lived wild with a wolf pack in the remote Canadian forests for two years.

It was a fascinating insight into the lives of wolves and the level of research is impressive alongside the detail of the court case and medical references. The parallels between wolf behaviour and human behaviour are interesting too.

I have long been a fan of Jodi Picoult and I wasn't disappointed in this book. The story hooks you in, wanting to know about Luke's experiences in the wild with the wolves; wanting to know why Edward argued with his father and left his family; and wanting to know what Cara is hiding about the car accident. Having the chapters told by various characters adds to the story's dimension - exploring different viewpoints and emotions.

A good read - well written, well researched and as ever with a satisfying ending.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lone Wolf, 26 Jan. 2012
By 
EssexReader (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
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Its rare that I read a Jodi Picoult book that I don't enjoy but when I heard of the storyline, I did wonder whether I would enjoy reading so much about wolves. However the amount of research that was necessitated made for interesting reading and having these chapters narrated by Luke and hearing his voice throughout the book added an extra dimension. The book follows the usual JP formula but its one that seems to work.

Luke's estranged son, Edward, flies home from Thailand upon hearing from his mother Georgie about the accident involving his father and sister, Cara. Luke lies in a coma and Cara requires surgery for her injuries. Cara blames Edward for breaking up the family by running away 6 years previously and thus causing the subsequent divorce between Luke and Georgie. Georgie has now remarried and has a new family whereas Luke's family is Cara and the wolves that he looks after. As the story progresses you learn more about Luke and eventually the reason why Edward left so quickly. The antagonism that Cara feels towards Edward leads to a courtroom battle as who will have the right to become Luke's medical representative - Edward believes that his father wouldn't want to live whilst Cara is determined to keep her father alive at any cost. Cara came across as being quite immature in her reasoning and towards the end, we learn the truth of a secret she is hiding that is hinted at throughout the book.

I enjoyed reading this, it was interesting and I became engrossed in the story. It seems to have received a varied response by way of review but to my mind JP just writes a story so well and they are a pleasure to read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Of men and wolves..., 17 May 2012
By 
Lola (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
I have read two Jodi Picoult's books, the first one, My Sister's Keeper, was a page-turner that I was inspired to read after having seen the film, but it is the "Lone Wolf", my second book that I randomly picked up from the local library, that inspired me to write a review.

I don't think it is necessary, with the amount of reviewers writing short description of the book, to add another one to the reviews page. And I would also like to point out that I am definitely not a long-standing fan of Jodi Picoult in a sense that I am not inclined to leave a five stars review just because I love everything she writes... But you know what, I might become one pretty soon.

I really enjoyed the "Lone Wolf", and what not to enjoy - the subject (and not the easy one) is well-researched, the characters are well developed and all of them likeable (so much that it's quite hard to pick the ones who you would side with), the language is flowing and easy to read, and the questions that Jodi Picoult raises throughout her book are quite urgent and well-worth thinking about.

Perhaps some people will find the excessive details about the wolf packs and patterns of wolf behaviour that are presented in short information blocks quite tiring and unnecessary, but I found that those segments were well-placed and gave the book a somewhat unusual feel. Besides, some facts about the wolves are quite fascinating, and especially when you think about relating and comparing the aspects you know (or think you might know) about human behaviour, to the behaviour of the wolves. I did not find the book patronizing and moralising, like some of the readers did, when those comparisons were made. As they came from one of the characters, a man on the verge of death, and perhaps on the verge of realisation of his own faults as a human being, who failed his duties to his own pack... excuse this slip, his family, the comparisons and musing about human life/interactions and wolf pack life deserved every inch of the printing space.

All in all, a very enjoyable read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mixed Reviews BUT....., 15 April 2012
By 
Amazon Customer (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
Jodi Picoult's last few novels have been controversial as expected, but not in the way I think she intended. Many readers seem to think she's going downhill a little but I absolutely disagree. Here's why:

Lone Wolf to me was like being on a massive diet and then being presented with a box full of cream cakes: I had to devour it and every bite was delicious. So what's it about? This time around Picoult has presented us with the standard process by which she creates her books - she's asked us a morally significant question and, depending on the reader, you might like or dislike the ending. Lone Wolf is about Luke Warren. Luke,a father of two, is obsessed with learning about wolves (to the point that even he lived in the wild with them at one point, surviving on raw meat....ew). But after a tragic car crash involving him and his daughter Cara he is left in a vegetative state. This means a significant brain injury has left him dependant on machines to survive with no capabilities in terms of accessing the part of his brain that determines consciousness. Cara is desperate to keep him alive in the hopes that, like so many other miracles, he might progressively get better. But there's a problem....Edward, Luke's son, left six years ago without so much as a goodbye. Now he's back after hearing about the accident. The problem? He's Luke's next of kin...so he gets to decide whether to turn life support off or not. And he wants to. But is it for revenge or for mercy? Cara doesn't care and she's willing to do anything to stop him!

I loved this book, as I have most of Picoult's books, but I did find myself a little disappointed at one stage. Picoult usually gives us a question "You want to save your father's life. Your brother wants to let him die. What would you do?" and usually I can't decide which side I'm on. With a standard Picoult book I'll change my mind a billion times and even by the end I'm not certain of what I think is right. BUT. This time was different. Why? This time I knew exactly what I wanted to happen without a doubt. There's still the dilemma between: If your dad is not compatible with life is it fairer to let him go? Is that what he'd want? And I toyed with that idea throughout but I was still more decisive than usual. Fans won't be disappointed however with the twists towards the end; something I think makes Picoult's writing style much more interesting. I was shocked as normal, I'm sure my mouth was hanging open for a good five minutes! But I did see some of the smaller twists coming (I can't explain which without ruining the story) and this doesn't usually happen.

A fantastic story of family, hope and survival at all costs. It made me look at my own family and think, "I'm never letting you go; I'll fight for you if no-one else can". If you don't read this you really are missing out. It may not be her best but it's still amazing, it still moved me and ultimately it hasn't put me off of Picoult one bit.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Killer opening line, 1 Mar. 2012
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
What immediately comes to your mind when you start reading a book and it has an absolutely killer first line? Do you instantly that this book is going to be good? Or do you ultimately set yourself up for disappointment?

I've loved Jodi Picoult's books for a good couple of years now, and although a couple of them have been a bit hit-and-miss, most of them have been brilliant. So I was looking forward to this book, and was seriously thinking about pre-ordering it, when my work went one better: I got an ARC of it, just sitting in the staff room ready for the taking. Of course, I had to finish the book I was reading at the time, but then the decision was made: I had to read this book before the other one or two (hundred) on my bookshelf waiting to be read.

From the killer opening line to the even better closing line and a few (almost) tears inbetween, I loved it. Once again, Ms Picoult has given us a hard hitting, emotional, driven book, which will certainly leave the reader thinking all the way through and even after finishing. I won't bore you with the blurb, as you have eyes, you can read that for yourself. But the main bulk of the story fits around wolves and the title Lone Wolf is also a book in the book. So a book, within a book, if you will. (Although not a book, within a book, within a book, within a book, within a book - you get the idea.) I discovered a lot of things I didn't know about wolves, which was very interesting.

Jodi has found her niche/formula and damn, does she stick to it. Although this hasn't worked in some books (The Tenth Circle to name one), it pretty much works with the majority of them. Each chapter is told from the point of view of a different character, with a few random people thrown in just to mess with your head. There are a few similarities between this and My Sister's Keeper, with one event happening almost exactly the way it happened in the latter.

As this has not been proof read either, there were a couple of incidences that bugged me - a character's 18th birthday keeps changing between coming up in 3 months, to coming up in 4 months. There is also the obligatory court case, which I've now come to expect! I can count on one hand how many books I've read of hers that don't feature a court case, but this one has a few shocks in store for readers and the characters.

One of the character's viewpoints/chapters (Luke) I liked, but at the same time, I didn't like and felt like something was missing. Maybe because this viewpoint is talking about past events, rather than present events, so it does come across as a disjointed viewpoint. But it is one of the more intriguing viewpoints, considering what is happening to Luke in the book and what the past events he is discussing. If you're like me, you'll be attempting to read between the lines to glean clues.

There's (as usual) a couple of plot points that will definitely have readers looking at themselves, their family and their friends in a different light. What would you hope your last words to someone would be? Mull that over the next over the next time you go to bed on an argument, the next time you walk away from someone, when you hang up the phone, or when you run away from your problems instead of facing them head on. Life is too short, as this book shows.

I'm now looking forward to the new book coming out in the UK in June and is co-written with her daughter Samantha. Two Jodi Picoult books in a year, we are honoured.
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58 of 65 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you absolutely love Jodi, you'll, 'err well, quite like this..., 28 Dec. 2011
By 
Katharine Kirby "Kate" (HELSTON, Cornwall United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Jodi Picoult has decided to lift the bar with `Lone Wolf'. She offers her legions of loyal readers the most substantial, impressively educational and well-researched effort so far. There is often a cute canine in JP's novels but here we have literally packs, of wild and captive wolves, the largest members of the dog family.

The main moral drama/dilemma is broken up by passages, from his wolf book, written by the now comatose Luke; the divorced father of Cara and Edward. Luke was a well-known TV presenter, naturalist and wolf expert. His pages, in italic, are set around time he spent living and interacting with wolf packs. The moral storm continually rages around Luke and his apparently hopeless situation, but through his writings being granted the power of speech; for me, Luke is given more than his share of the dialogue. My heart sank each time I turned a page and found him carrying on, with explanations of wolf hierarchy, pack manners, behaviour and the complicated reasoning behind their untamed characteristics. If I wanted to learn more about wolves I wouldn't really be looking at a book of this kind. Clearly meant to be linked signposts along the way of the main story they served, for me anyway, to interrupt it. Along with this device, the rest of the cast each have their own name at the head of the chapters through which the story is recounted, in parts, rather than seamlessly narrated. Cara, Edward, Georgie (Luke's ex) inhabit Part 1, then in Part 2, happily for Jodi Picoult' s hugely successful but nevertheless standard recipe, Georgie's new husband, Joe, is the inevitable defence lawyer, plus Helen Bedd (!) the temporary guardian appointed by the court... Rather like a tennis ball, the reader is restlessly batted back and forth between this motley, constantly sparring crew.

I found it hard to like the three main protagonists. Luke came across as a man who spent too much time over-enthusiastically living, wallowing even, in the society of fierce wild animals; finding it a more worthy occupation than that of being a well rounded human being. At one point he set off for two years living away from civilisation, emerging to a scene as if from `The Village' at the roadside, of everyday life. He should perhaps never have married or taken on a family. Georgie, his ex-wife is a fragrant lady, now recovering from his uncaring treatment and the harsh break up of their family unit (pack). Daughter Cara, just shy of her majority, is, perhaps understandably, arrogant, stubborn, self centred, spoilt and rude. Her brother Edward has acted decisively in removing himself from the broken family set up that happened at the same time he came out; despite that he still seemed unreal, he is made to act oddly and become unbelievable. I still felt this cross way about them after more than two thirds of the book had gone by although of course I travelled hopefully - there surely would be greater depths to plumb. Tiny hints imply that there will be more to this story than is first apparent, at least relating to the circumstances of the accident, and the rift between Luke and Edward. These turn out to be the fireworks that briefly fizzle Lone Wolf into some kind of life.

Personally I found it to be rather tedious and overwritten. I kept measuring what was left to read and wishing it over. I know that although for me it was just too longwinded - for those who really love her writing the extra weight will surely be appreciated. Reading is subjective and we are all entitled to our opinions. Good or bad. In this case I would say that I have thoroughly read and fairly considered this book, chosen by me through vine, as I had enjoyed others by her before; but I cannot personally, other than 'luke warmly' recommend it...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More of the same, 24 Dec. 2011
By 
Crookedmouth ":-/" (As seen on iPlayer) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The book is about Luke Warren who is left in a non- recoverable coma after his car crashes into a tree. Cara, his daughter, was also injured in the crash. He was a zoologist who studied wolves at his wildlife reserve and also lived with them in the wild for 2 years. Each character in the story gets a chapter or chapters to tell their own part of the story. His family have to decide what to do with his life support machine. As with other Jodi Picoult books, there is always a conundrum, a legal battle and medical problems. I felt it was a little bit too similar to the two other books I have read by her. I enjoyed reading about the wolves but the legal and medical battles, I've read before.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting, 29 July 2012
By 
A. Rose (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Some Picoult fans have said that her last two or three books weren't as good as her earlier ones, I've enjoyed them all but can assure you that Lone Wolf is excellent and just as good as her early books and written in a similar style.

This on is set within a divorced family with a re-married mother, Georgie, and brother and sister, Edward and Cara. Cara lives with her father, Luke, after Edward left the family to live in Thailand which Cara believes is the reason for her parents divorce. The book starts with a devastating car crash in which Cara pulls her father from the car, they are both taken to hospital, Cara with shoulder injuries while Luke is on life support and in a vegatative state. The big issue if this story is whether Edward, estranged from his father for six years, or Cara, a minor, should have the final say of whether or not to switch off the life support machine. There are many other issues and side issues within the story as a whole, just as you would expect from Picoult and all the way through we have chapters from Luke giving a wonderfully descriptive and informative life he has had with wolves, including integrating himself into a wild Canadian wolf pack for two years.

The end, as we have grown used to with Jodi's novels, packs a punch which we are not expecting and makes the reader re-think what you may already have made your mind up about. Excellent, much recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A winner ..., 8 April 2012
This review is from: Lone Wolf (Kindle Edition)
I absolutely loved this book. I have read most of Jodi Picoult's books and my favourites are Nineteen Minutes and Change of Heart. This book has just joined my favourites.

The research is impressive as per usual. I really cared about all the main characters although it took me a long while (almost to the end of the book) to "get" Edward. As you do with a really good book, I was transported to within the pages and felt like I was present as the story unfolded. The story stayed with me afterwards and I felt quite sad when I finished it.

JP has a knack of picking issues we can all identify with, giving it a twist and turning it into a story. Lately, I must admit to thinking that there has been a formulaic element to her books i.e. House Rules and Sing You Home but in Lone Wolf, I rediscovered the original JP that I first read and loved.

Whether you are a JP fan or not, I highly recommend that you read this book.
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Lone Wolf by Jodi Picoult
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