Thursday, December 17, 2009

Songs of the Humpback Whale by Jodi Picoult

I must be done with grad classes - because this is the second book I've finished this week! Yippee!!!

I have broken one of my most steadfast rules - I had three books going at one time.
I NEVER do that!
But - none of the books held me in such a tight grip that I couldn't put them down. Instead, I kept picking up alternatives and hoping...

I am sorry to say this was one of the three. I sort of feel that Jodi has let me down. Either that - or I've read enough of hers that they are predictable.

This is the story of a broken family - Jane is married to the amazing marine biologist - Oliver Jones - eminent scholar on humpback whales. They have one 15 year old daughter Rebecca.

The story opens with Jane commiting the sin of all sins - she slaps Oliver in the heat of the moment - and takes off in her station wagon with Rebecca. This has been brewing for their entire marriage. In fact, she left Oliver once before and fled to her parents in the East. Oliver threatened to take away Rebecca - so Jane sent her back on an airplane - that crashed - in Iowa - What Cheer, IA. Rebecca was one of a few survivors.

Sounds intriguing doesn't it - I mean What Cheer, IA!!!

Now the part of this that I really didn't like...the story is told in many voices.
I usually like adds depth and interest.
But Rebecca's story is told backwards. So the first chapter in Rebecca'a voice - is actually the last thing that happens. So you know of a horrific event from the very beginning... I HATED THAT!

Part of reading a book is anticipating - building up the plot to a culminating event. This does that - but it is such a let down after the awful event that Rebecca tells.

Not only that - but I really hate the ending. It is all wrong. It defeats the entire story. It just plain makes me mad!!!

So - I became very engrossed in the story. It has all the earmarks of Picoult's amazing story telling skills. But - I really didn't like the book.

Really didn't like the book.

Shucks!! That's not the way my vacation is supposed to go!!!


Kim said...

Well, I have avoided reading this one because I had read several negative comments about it. You don't make me want to read it either. Except, having What Cheer, IA in it intrigues me!

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