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Songs of the Humpback Whale by [Picoult, Jodi]
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Songs of the Humpback Whale Kindle Edition

2.9 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews

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Product Description

Review

This powerful and affecting novel demonstrates that there are as many truths to a story as there are people to tell it (Publishers Weekly)

Jodi Picoult's novels often focus on lives turned upside down by some terrible event, and it's her way with the small emotional detail that makes them so rewarding (Marie Claire)

The striking thing is Picoult's confidence. She takes a controversial topic and gallops with it, leaving the reader breathless and, crucially, better informed and full of questions. (The Times)

Picoult trades on gripping, emotive plots hinged upon gnarly ethical dilemmas . . . Picoult's pitch and pace are masterly and hardly conducive to a good night's sleep. (Financial Times)

Review

"* 'Picoult displays near perfect pitch... ingeniously structured and reminiscent of early Anne Tyler' - Mary Morris * 'Charming and poignant, Picoult's novel is even better after a second reading' - Library Journal * 'This powerful and affecting novel demonstrates that there are as many truths to a story as there are people to tell it' - Publishers Weekly"

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1735 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0743431014
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (25 Jun. 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340897309
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340897300
  • ASIN: B002S0KBUE
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #31,586 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Unbound
For years, Jane Jones has lived in the shadow of her husband, renowned San Diego oceanographer Oliver Jones. But during an escalating argument, Janes turns to him with an alarming volatility. In anger and fear, Jane leaves with her teenage daughter, Rebecca, for a cross-country odyssey. Charted by letters from her borther Joley, they are guided to his Massachusetts apple farm, where surprising self-discoveries await. Now Oliver, an expert at tracking humpback whales across vast oceans, will search for his wife across a continent, and find a new way to see the world, his family, and himself: through her eyes. The story is told in five different voices which at the start i found a bit difficult to understand as this is a very unusual way of writing, especially with Rebecca telling the story backwards: ) but once you get into the novel it becomes more clear. A very good read and i will read more of Picoults books.
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Format: Paperback
I've read quite a few of Picoult's books. Didn't like this one. There must have been a reason that this didn't get published before. I can cope with reading stories out of sync and moving between characters but this was not well written. In fact I am not sure what the underlining story about her childhood really was.

I don't understand why they chose to publish it without editing it a little. Sadly it seems someone wanted to 'get on the bandwagon' and earn some money on the back of her more successful novels. Definitely passing this onto the book swap shop at work. Not a keeper.
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Format: Paperback
As an avid Jodi Picoult reader, I looked forward to reading this book. I usually love her books and can't put them down. I was deeply disappointed by this one. I found the characters difficult to relate to and therefore difficult to care about. I found the hospital scene disturbing without context or relevancy. I honestly wish I hadn't read this book as a result. The ending was in keeping with the rest of the book - flat, in comparison with her other books. I would not recomend this book to anyone.
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Format: Hardcover
I've read all of Jodi Picoult's books, and generally love them (apart from the usually predictable endings) but I really couldn't get on with this one. It jumped from narrator to narrator, and also around in time so I didn't have a clue what was going on, and didn't care enough to try and work it out.
It just didn't draw me in as the rest of her books have, and I abandoned it about 60 pages in. It's a good job she improved with her later novels, if I'd read this first I'd never had bothered with the others.
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Format: Hardcover
I love Jodi Piccoult and I've read all her books. I bought and read this the day it came out and was really disappointed with it. You never get to see the rteal people in the book, its like Jodi skimmed over their personalities and the book never really recovered.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was a good story, written from the perspective of several characters, with mixed success. I liked the technique of letters guiding the journey across America. However, I got lost with the sequence of events at times since it wasn't always obvious what, when and where the action was. There was a lot of jumping about and also some unecessary repetition.

The ending was predictable but disappointng for me. I couldn't undestand the decision made by Jane, given her strength of feeling.

I preferred this book to others by the author, as there was no big moral dilemma to grapple with.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am an avid reader and was recommended to try Jodi Picoult and wow what a disappointment. This book is so disjointed and the story has no flow to it. I have read other books like this but they were much better written. I wish I hadn't wasted my money and I won't be wasting my time finishing it I am on page 146 and I am giving up.
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Format: Paperback
About the author

Jodi Picoult is an American author. She was awarded the New England Bookseller Award for fiction in 2003. Songs of the humpback whale was her first novel published at the age of 25.

Blurb on the back

The first time Jane Jones tried to leave her husband, her daughter almost got killed. This time, she’s going to do it right. Jane escaped a childhood of abuse into the refuge of marriage, only to find history repeating itself. And when her husband’s neglect extends to their daughter too, she knows it must stop. Taking Rebecca with her, Jane runs away, seeking the only place of safety she knows. But however far she runs, she cannot escape the question always on her mind: how can she save her daughter, when she couldn’t save herself.

Good bits about the book

I love Jodi Picoult’s books. I like the use of several narratives that she uses in many of her books as well as this one. I like her style of writing, she makes you want to keep moving through the pages and before you know it you have read the whole book and wanting more.

The characters are likable apart from Jane who I sympathized with but didn’t warm to. I found all the others especially the lads on the farm and Rebecca easy to like which made the ending much more powerful.

Bad bits about the book

This was Jodi’s first novel and you can tell in the sense it was less polished. The first half or so of the book was a little confusing as the narrative went forward and backward in time with only a couple of pages to one or the other. It was much less confusing when the narratives caught up with each other.

Rating for the book

Four out of five stars. This book is still brilliant.
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