So, if i’m going to get 52 reviews up by the end of the year, I’d better get going. I’m already behind! Here’s #1:
The first book that I read this year was Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult.
Several years ago I went on a Jodi Picoult kick and read a bunch of her books in a row. Although I enjoyed them, I kind of got burned out after awhile. She explores some heavy issues, and reading several of her novels in a row can be emotionally draining.
This one wasn’t as heavy as some of her others, so that was a plus. There was a lot of information about elephants, which might turn off some readers, but I found it interesting.
The main character of the book, Jenna Metcalf, is trying to find her mother Alice, who disappeared when Jenna was three years old after an accident that occurred on the elephant preserve that her parents owned. A woman who worked on the preserve was trampled and killed, and Alice was injured. She was taken to the hospital, but she signed herself out the next day and hasn’t been heard from since.
Together with a washed-up psychic and a sometimes drunk cop turned private investigator, Jenna sets out to find the truth about what happened to her mother 12 years ago. She ends up discovering more than she ever imagined.
I really enjoyed this book, and without giving too much away, the ending took me by surprise. So much so that I felt like the rug was pulled out from under me, and I was angry at first. I think I was angry that I didn’t see it coming. I like to try to guess the ending, but I sometimes get disappointed when I am right, because then it’s too easy.
Before this book, I read We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, and I saw the ending of that one coming a mile away. I was so disappointed when I figured it out so quickly, that I just didn’t appreciate the second half of the book as much. I was bored.
This book did not bore me. It kept me guessing. That it was Jodi Picoult is such a master storyteller. She keeps you guessing until the end, then she knocks the wind out of you.
Has anyone else read this? What did you think?