Sunday, April 30, 2017

Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult

Change of Heart has dual meaning. It is in the literal and figurative sense. There is a mixture of a variety of story lines in this novel, some of her own some from others.
June Nealon had a seemingly perfect life. She is married to a police officer, has a young daughter who he is helping to raise and expecting a second child and then in an instant it is taken from her. Shay Bourne a man hired to work on their home is found guilty and sentenced to death for taking the lives of her husband and young daughter. 

June is left alone to give birth and raise her daughter  Claire. Claire has a heart issue and without a transplant she will die it's just a matter of time. This is where Shay Bourne reenters the picture(11 years later) --- he wants to give Claire his heart when he is executed but will June allow it, will the law allow it? 

Told in alternating view points from a variety of characters including Shay's lawyer this story will hook you in (if you can get past a few minor yet annoying story lines). Expect a twist and to shed a few tears.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

In nineteen minutes Peter Houghton changes the lives of the residents of a small community in New Hampshire. He loads a gun, walks the halls of his high school and takes 10 lives and wounds another 19. 

Peter has been a victim of bullying throughout his entire school years -- his first day of school resulted in his lunch box being tossed out the window of the school bus. His life after that and in the following years didn't get any easier.

Josie Cormier is the daughter of the judge who presides over the case. She had a childhood connection to Peter and has no recollection of the events of the day. She is mourning the death of her boyfriend and struggling to adjust to life after...

This is my second reading on this book and I found myself having much more compassion for all the characters and a bit more frustration with others. The story is told in alternating voices. One of the things I enjoyed about this book is that it doesn't just show Peter as a killer it shows his "human" side. I also feel that Picoult captured what goes on in schools all across the US in regards to cliques, bullying and people turning a blind eye. There are no innocent or guilty parties everyone plays a part however this does not justify the actions of taking lives.

The characters are diverse, interesting and sympathetic. This isn't an easy read as it deals with a variety of subjects and strong emotions.

The Embalmer by Caillé Anne-Reneé and Mullins Rhonda

The Embalmer is a short book around 80 pages or so. It's not as macabre as I was hoping but it is rather interesting. The book centers a...