Sunday, February 24, 2008

Songs of the Humpback Whale, By Jodi Picoult

I just realized I never posted my review of Songs of the Humpback Whale by Jodi Picoult. It was last month's First Thurdays book and I was going to wait until we met to post my review. So here it is...

I've been a fan of Picoult for a few years now and pretty much am guaranteed to love anything she writes. So, for me, it was a no-brainer to pick this book for the First Thursdays inaugural book choice. It was Picoult's first novel so I was curious to see how far she'd come. The answer is, very, very far. I did enjoy the book on a superficial level. I thought the plot was relatively interesting, but ultimately the characters were flat and unlikable. There really wasn't a single character who seemed the least bit interesting or real to me.

From the emotionally infantile mother/wife, Jane, to the cold, uncaring and unsympathetic husband/father, Oliver there was not a likable character in the mix. Even Rebecca, the wise-beyond-her-years daughter with a reverse role as a maternal figure to her own mother, who should earn the reader's sympathy if nothing else, was just dry and flat.

It is a testament to Picoult's progression as a writer to see where she began and it makes me even more excited to see where she is headed.

Ultimately I'd say skip this one and choose one of her later books. My Sister's Keeper was the book that introduced me to Picoult's writing and is still one of my absolute favorite of her works...

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