Thursday, August 2, 2007

Book Review, The Tenth Circle

I'm not a huge Jodi Picoult fan. I don't dislike her, she just doesn't light a fire for me. But, my sister lent me her recent book, and I had nothing else to read, so...

Ms. Picoult tends to write about family relationships. Her strength is in presenting points of view of various characters, to allow the reader to identify with many positions.

This particular book is about a teenage girl and the tragedy she, her family, and her community experience after she reports that she was raped.

There are two topics that make me automatically NOT enjoy a book. First is rape, second is death of a child. I am fortunate to never have experienced either of them, but I find both situations so horrific to imagine that it immediately takes the pleasure out of a book for me. I'm a pleasure reader, so this is an issue for me. However, I got past that and was able to finish the book.

The highlights were the comic book drawings that helped to narrate the story. It was an entertaining literary device, and helped pull the story together. I also really enjoyed the portion describing life for the native Alaskans.

Also disturbing was her representation of current teen sexual practices, which in her footnotes she states was based on conversations with real teens. I'm no prude, and don't think of myself as naive, but boy, times have changed, and not for the better.

Overall, I'm lukewarm to this one. It's a quick and easy read, and she puts some interesting twists in throughout. But I preferred My Sister's Keeper to this one, probably because it was about medical ethics. I'd start there.

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