Jodi Picoult is an author I follow; I’m happy to say that I’ve read all her books but her first (Songs of a Humpback Whale – I just couldn’t get into it!) and will continue to do so. I enjoyed this book, but I’m finding more and more that the characters she writes about aren’t as captivating as they used to be. Here’s a synopsis, taken from the website www.jodipicoult.com
Edward Warren, 23, has been living in Thailand for five years, a prodigal son who left his family after an irreparable fight with his father, Luke. But he gets a frantic phone call: His dad lies comatose in a NH hospital, gravely injured in the same accident that has also injured his younger sister Cara.
Cara, 17, still holds a grudge against her brother, since his departure led to her parents’ divorce. In the aftermath, she’s lived with her father – an animal conservationist who became famous after living with a wild wolf pack in the Canadian wild. It is impossible for her to reconcile the still, broken man in the hospital bed with her vibrant, dynamic father.
With Luke’s chances for recovery dwindling, Cara wants to wait for a miracle. But Edward wants to terminate life support and donate his father’s organs. Is he motivated by altruism, or revenge? And to what lengths will his sister go to stop him from making an irrevocable decision?
LONE WOLF looks at the intersection between medical science and moral choices. If we can keep people who have no hope for recovery alive artificially, should they also be allowed to die artificially? Does the potential to save someone else’s life with a donated organ balance the act of hastening another’s death? And finally, when a father’s life hangs in the balance, which sibling should get to decide his fate?
Although I found the book to be slow moving, and knowing I’m not overly intrigued by the inner workings of wolf packs, I love the way Jodi Picoult’s books always keep you guessing, and questioning whose side you are on. I’m always waiting for the twist, and it’s never anywhere near what I thought it was going to be. I always end up sympathizing with the character I disliked the most!
Above everything else, Jodi Picoult’s writing style is always exquisite. I love these quotes, extracted from the novel:
“Her voice sounded like a string that was fraying.”
“Scars are just a treasure map for pain you’ve buried too deep to remember.”
“Like a missing tooth, sometimes an absence is more noticeable than a presence.”
“I didn’t think i could possibly love another baby as much as I loved the one I’d already had,” I continue. “But the strangest thing happened when I held you for the first time. It was like my heart suddenly unfolded. Like there was this secret space I didn’t even know existed, and there was room for both of you.” I stare at her. “Once my feelings were stretched like that, there was no going back. Without you, it just would have felt empty.”
“There’s an honesty to the wolf world that is liberating. There’s no diplomacy, no decorum. You tell your enemy you hate him; you show your admiration by confessing the truth. That directness doesn’t work with humans, who are masters of subterfuge. Does this dress make me look fat? Do you really love me? Did you miss me? When a person asks this, she doesn’t want to know the real answer. She wants you to lie to her. After two years of living with wolves, I had forgotten how many lies it takes to build a relationship.”
Although I enjoyed the book, if you are going to pick up a Jodi Picoult book for the first time, I don’t recommend this one. The books I’ve loved the most; found fascinating as they questioned my morals, and I had a love/hate relationship with the characters were:- Keeping Faith, Perfect Match and Plain Truth. The books that really messed me up and stayed with me for weeks like clouds over my head were The Pact and Nineteen Minutes.
Can you recommend any books for me? I would love to know your thoughts on Lone Wolf also!