Top critical review
Far too harrowing for me
on 4 August 2012
This is the first time I have ever read a Jodi Picoult novel. A friend recommended it, so I thought I would give it a try.
It was an easy read. I powered through it in an evening, and was not at all bored, or tempted to put it down. On the other hand I found it totally overwrought, emotionally draining and not something I would cheerfully read again. I get why other people read them, and why she is such a popular author. She is very, very good at what she does. It is just that I don't want to read about this kind of thing for pleasure. It is exhausting, and pretty miserable, and shows lots of people in the worst possible light.
The subject matter was varied, and about the only thing that held it all together was the fact that all of it was totally harrowing. The torments of IVF and failed marriages, and same sex relationships and alcoholism, and extreme religious fundamentalism were just a few of the things that the author deals with in this book. I thought it was far too much, and a simpler, pared down story would have been just as effective, and way more powerful. As it was I did start to find the whole thing faintly ridiculous at one point and wonder what on earth Picoult was going to drag into the mix next.
Not for me, but great if you like that sort of harrowing, chick lit.