Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Songs of the Humpback Whale by Jodi Picoult

Jodi Picoult writes women's fiction. She dives into the issues faced by mothers. Each book of I've read has made a small part of me stand up and say, "Yes! Me too!" Whenever I pick up a Jodi Picoult book, I know that I'm going to explore corners of my life that I had no idea existed. Songs of the Humpback Whale was no exception. The novel is told in the voices of five characters -- Father, Mother, Daughter, Mother's lover and Mother's Brother. Just knowing the voices Ms Picoult uses should be enough to give you a bit of the storyline. The father is a marine biology, specializing in the study of whales. He loves them completely, a love that takes over the life of his family. One day the mother has had enough and leaves. The great part about using every character to tell the story is the sympathy develops for each person trapped in the same passage. The faults of the mother, father and daughter are laid open in a way that I've never encoutered before. This is the second novel of Ms Picoult's that I have read, but her first written. The other was Harvesting the Heart, a beautiful story of young, reluctant, motherhood. Her name is on my list of "To Be Read" so I get to all of her works.

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