My Sister’s Keeper: 9/20/07

My Sister's Keeper My Sister’s Keeper
A Novel by Jodi Picoult

Our group’s experiences of this book ranged from page-turning enjoyment to exasperated disappointment. People had varying reactions to the characters and the writing, but everyone agreed that the ending was a complete surprise.

We debated about several characters.  Did Sara’s behavior ring true, in her roles as mother and as lawyer? Would someone like Campbell really insist on keeping the nature of his disability secret from absolutely everyone for so long?  Was it believable that Jesse would be so easily turned around from such dangerous behavior?  Could  we have done without the storyline about Julia and Campbell?  Would a 13 year old girl really take the action Anna did?

LD pointed out that someone she knew when she was young did face a very similar situation.  Her neighbor was close in age to Anna, and declined to donate an organ to her very ill sibling.

A & HF remembered a similar story in the news many years ago about a boy conceived for the purpose of donating cord blood to a sister with leukemia, a case mentioned by Jodi Picoult in one of her interviews.

LD approved of a tragic ending, since anything else would have been completely inconsistent with the rest of the story. CD called the ending a big “cop out,” and guessed that the author had run out of ideas, or ran up against a deadline. Both JS & JS were also very unhappy with the ending. SG disagreed with the critics, describing to us her reading of the book and its ending as a poignant reminder that try as we might, we can’t play God. Sara and Brian tried to save one child by creating another, but their plans were changed overnight by events completely out of their control.

Jodi Picoult: bio, reviews at BookBrowse
Jodi Picoult Interview with Picoult from
Picoult’s web site has a podcast, a radio interview about My Sister’s Keeper in addition to information about all her books.    
  For more articles on Picoult and her books, try Infotrac Onefile, available at the library, or from home (with a Minuteman Library Network card).
According to an “Author Read-alike” article in Novelist by Kaite Mediatore, if you like Jodi Picoult’s books, you might also want to try the following authors and titles. (Novelist is a Reader’s Advisory database available online at the Library, or with a Minuteman Library Network card on any Internet connection.)  
  Chris Bohjalian, Past the Bleachers
  Jacquelyn Mitchard, A Theory of Relativity
  Luanne Rice, Home Fires
  Ann Hood, Properties of Water
  Sue Miller, While I Was Gone