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Songs of the Humpback Whale

3.18 of 5 stars 3.18  ·  rating details  ·  22,810 ratings  ·  1,634 reviews
Sometimes finding your own voice is a matter of listening to the heart...

Jodi Picoult's powerful novel portrays an emotionally charged marriage that changes course in one explosive moment... For years, Jane Jones has lived in the shadow of her husband, renowned San Diego oceanographer Oliver Jones. But during an escalating argument, Jane turns on him with an alarming vola

Published September 1st 2003 by Allen & Unwin (first published March 25th 1992)
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This book is awful. Jodi Picoult has written too many books too quickly - she's lacking a good story and apparently doesn't research her material. The book is written from five different perspectives - which would be fine but she doesn't go in chronological order and she doesn't consistenly date the entries. You have to guess the time frame.

Next, when the mom and daughter arrive in Salt Lake she gives an AWFUL description of the people and the main attraction - the Great Salt Lake. She says the
Kwesi 章英狮
Some said that Jodi Picoult's early works were not as good as her present novels. Which I do agree that in fact I'm still in a process of discovering her own world of writing. What I mean is, I'm not quitting, I have the feeling that her present works were better and she's still in a process of discovering her own inner ideas to write a book. I don't believe that her books were written badly and in fact, I find it okay but the problem with this book is the strangling minds of the characters. I c ...more
May 30, 2007 HiphopQuyn rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: hardcore Picoult fans
I've been reading some of Jodi Picoult's books and generally find them fairly entertaining, on the trashy side with some good lines thrown in every now and then. this one, reprinted due to her recent popularity, however, is not a winner. it took me forever to read and the style was annoying and inconsistent. supposedly told backwards from five different perspectives, it's actually in a jumbled chronology with confusing skips back and forth between characters, resulting in the reader not feeling ...more
As an avid Jodi Picoult reader, I was deeply disappointed by this book. Usually I love her books and can't put them down. I found the characters to difficult to relate to and therefore difficult to care about. Some of them were just plain creepy and disturbing; Joely who is apparently madly in love with his own sister, and Hadley a 25 year old man who thinks it is okay to have a sexual relationship with a naive, emotionally immature fifteen year old girl. That's called statutory rape.

The narrat
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Mar 04, 2009 Heather rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: established Jodi Picoult fans
I need to start this review by saying that Jodi Picoult is one of my absolute favorite authors. Two summers ago I borrowed nearly every book she'd ever written from the library, and devoured them all. The way she writes - the subjects she writes about - they're real, and timely, and relevant. Her kind of fiction is the kind I would want to write... if I were a fiction author.

To my knowledge, Songs of the Humpback Whale is the first novel that she published. Having read most of her later novels,
February 2007 BotM. I tried to remain optimistic while reading this book. It wasn't one I voted for, but I read it anyway. It's been read, and I'm glad it's over and done with. It wasn't the type of book that I like, and while I usually don't give a book a bad opinion, this one, as much as I hate to say this, stank. OMG! All of it was in the first person; there were no dividing chapters, just the characters themselves. Everything was written in the first person. While you don't pay that much of ...more
”But the humpbacks… sings songs that fill you to the core, that swell inside you. They are the whales with which I fell in love when I first heard the calls- eerie splayed, the haunted sounds your heart beats when you are afraid of being alone.”

DNF on page 56.

Setting:San Diego, California and Massachusetts; 1990-1992

Cover Thoughts?:I lurv apples, which is probably why whenever I look at the cover, it makes mr hungry…

”I’m telling you the story of our trip because I’m the only one who ha
Jodi Picoult's first novel, Songs of the Humpback Whale, was my latest read. In it, she establishes her writing style and tendency to use multiple perspectives. Jane Jones is a speech pathologist, living in California in the shadow of her husband Oliver's fame. Oliver does research on humpback whales, and is well-known for his discovery of whale songs and their repetition. When the book begins, Jane and Oliver get into another of their fights, and Jane strikes Oliver. Confronted by her past as a ...more
Joana Esteves
Se este fosse o primeiro livro que lia de Jodi Picoult, a minha vontade de ler outros livros dela andaria ali perto do zero...
Cameo S
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
SICK and tired of reading the same convos and scenarios again and again from each person's perspective. A LOT of it was crazy repetitive and not incredibly enlightening as to each individuals point of view. Maybe fun for Picoult to write, I don't know. Made me weary to keep reading.
Also, the characters trip to Salt Lake... Do people swim in the Great Salt Lake? And she inserts these supposed polygamists into the story... Trying to make them nice, I guess. A man and his three wives, and not a kid
Achei o titulo do livro interessante e acaba mesmo por reflectir a busca de todas a personagens presentes no livro, todas procuram o amor à sua maneira, se o encontram isso depende do entendimento de cada leitor...

A minha parte preferida é o modo como é contada a estória, enquanto Rebecca conta a sua versão da frente para trás, isto é, o inicio do seu relato é o fim da narração das restantes personagens e algures no livro ambas acabam por se cruzar. Contudo, essa situação acaba por em certos mo
Kelly (TheWellReadRedhead)
I am normally a big JP fan, but this book just didn't do it for me. I know it was her first, and in my opinion, she vastly improved over time. First, I thought it was VERY difficult to be sympathetic to Jane's character. I know her backstory was supposed to make this happen, but in the end I just thought she was a whiny immature woman who didn't have the decency to just make up her mind already.

Second, I thought the Hadley-Rebecca relationship was super odd. I see the type of relationship Picoul
Ben Starling
Songs of the Humpback Whale is a good read and structurally quite masterful. Multiple POV and one storyline running backwards. This was Picoult's first published work - and she pulled all this off at the age of 26! Outstanding. Stand back non-believers. Recommended.
I was surprised by the 1- and 2-star reviews for this book. I loved it and could not put it down. There was strong character development, and the family struggles in their different relationships as well as the outcomes and reasons for them were realistic. I also liked the unique way the story unfolded, one story going backwards in time and the rest forward, all being told from the viewpoints of the five main characters.

Now normally I love a Jodi Picoult book. She is one of my favorite authors. But this book just rubbed me the wrong way. Well, in particular Jane did. I had no problem with her trip, and her and her daughter running away. But the way Jane acts, and the way her husband Oliver acts about the whole abuse situation. I feel like these characters contradicted themselves at every turn. And the ending was completely a drop off, and a disappointment. I was mentally slapping every character at one point or ...more
I'm a big Jodi Picoult fan, so I'm trying to read all of her books. This one came, and i looked at the premise and thought - eh? I started reading and thought eh! Skimming forward and reading the reviews i thought EH! And decided there was no need to finish it. Usually her books center around a moral problem that make you think, mostly with a kind of twist. This book is just about a woman who is leaving her husband, who works too much, taking her daughter with her. They are driving from CA to Ne ...more
I really wanted to like this book more than I did. I just had a few issues with it. It bothered me that often times I felt like the dates/ages of people didn't match up. Rebecca (the daughter) was 15 and Jane (the mother) was 35 in the book. This means that Jane had Rebecca when she was 20. Jane's age when she got married was never actually mention, but she started dating her husband at 15. Later on in the book it says that Jane had Rebecca after she was married for a while, got her masters, etc ...more
I believe this is Jodi Picoult's first novel, it's not the first one I read, but nonetheless this novel can make you fall IN LOVE with her.
Jodi Picoult is one of my favorite authors, with every book I read she doesn't cease to amaze me.
You always learn something new, (like in this one where you learn about humpback whales, something I never thought I'd read about.)
So, let me be more clear on what this book is actually about, because it isnt only about humpacks, :D
The main characters are Jane, O
“À Procura do Amor”, obra de estreia da autora Jodi Picoult, lançado inicialmente em 1992, retracta a cinco vozes os acontecimentos de pessoas muito diferentes entre si, contudo tendo em comum laços de amor, amizade e acontecimentos que os modificará para sempre.

A partida de Jane Jones e da sua filha Rebecca, depois de uma discussão acesa por parte da primeira com o seu marido, leva-as aos pomares de macieiras de Massachusetts, onde ambas irão descobrir o verdadeiro significado do amor, o que é
Lynn G.
Had this been the first Picoult book that I had ever read I feel certain that it would have been my last. Fortunately, for me, I had read others of her titles and, generally, thought they were well done, in particular House Rules House Rules by Jodi Picoult.

The only redeeming quality of Songs of the Humpback Whale was the information about the humpback whale.
The characters, by and large, were flat and uninteresting. The repetitive aspects of the plot line didn't work and were just annoying. Picoult's editor should have
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It's no secret that I'm a sucker for Jodi Picoult. No matter how much her books may frustrate me I'm always ready to pick up her latest release and let myself get sucked in all over again. I read my first book by her in the late 90's, The Pact and then I read Plain Truth and pretty much everything that followed but I had never read this one (her first) or a few of her earlier works. Some of them just didn't seem overly interesting to me but we're doing a challenge with my book club and one task ...more
Songs of the Humpback Whale is Picoult’s first novel, a fact that is painfully evident as you turn the pages. I originally abandoned Songs of the Humpback Whale, placing it back on the bookcase around page 73, but I picked again after listing it as one of my To Be Read Challenge bookstack and coming to grips with the fact that reading the complete works of Jodi Picoult did require I read her first book too.

Songs of the Humpback Whale, like all of Picoult’s novels, is told from the alternating vi
I hadn't realized when I picked up this book that it was one of Picoult's first published novels. She has come a long way since then! Some of the scenes in this book are so contrived that I continued reading in much the same way people continue staring at really bad movies. In one chapter a character reveals she was molested by her father while engaged in foreplay with a guy she met a few days prior. He is so moved by what she endured and he so totally gets her and she feels that he gets her and ...more
Told from five perspectives, and in different orders, Songs of the Humpback Whale shows a remarkable depth of insight into the way in which events are different for every participant.
The at-times-confusing decision to write events backwards for a character and forwards for others helps avoid the tedium that could arise from retelling the same events multiple times, but unfortunately, at times, leads to difficulty in remembering where in the story one is with regard to everyone else's timeline.
Jane Jones has lived in the shadow of her renowned husband, Oliver Jones for years. The two has a rocky relationship and struggles to keep their love strong and the forgiveness in tact, but to no avail. Oliver is devoted to his career and he spends less time with his wife and his teenager daughter Rebecca, one that he neglects to spend quality time with. After a heated altercation, Jane leaves with her daughter and with the help of her affectionate brother Joley, she is guided to his Massachuset ...more
I am already a big fan of Jodi Picoult, but I did not particularly like this book. The story was told from the points of view of five different characters, which is good as Picoult had done in some of her novels. But this one is different because the narrative jumped between past and current events, then back to the past again, without clear reference to dates (except for chapters that were related from Rebecca's point of view). It got me very confused during the first part of the book, and I ha ...more
I recently became a Jodi Picoult fan, and have since snatched up every book out there with her name on it. Oddly enough, I wasn't able to get my hands on a copy of her first novel, Songs of the Humpback Whale, until after I had read all fifteen of her other novels. I decided that it would be worth it just to see what kind of beginnings Picoult had and to see what began her career.

Songs of the Humpback Whale follows the journey (both literally and figuratively) of a woman and her daughter who are
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  • If You Believe
  • Novels by Jodi Picoult
  • Where or When
  • Happiness Sold Separately
  • Around the Next Corner
  • Pieces of My Sister's Life
  • Goodnight, Beautiful
  • Riding Lessons (Riding Lessons, #1)
  • To Hear A Nightingale (Nightingale, #1)
  • A Theory of Relativity
  • Twelve Across
  • Woman in Red
  • Cypress Point
  • The Abortionist's Daughter
Jodi Picoult is the author of twenty-two novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers The Storyteller, Lone Wolf, Between the Lines, Sing You Home, House Rules, Handle with Care, Change of Heart, Nineteen Minutes, and My Sister’s Keeper. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.

Her new novel, LEAVING TIME, is now available in hardcover, ebook, and audio.

Website: http:/
More about Jodi Picoult...

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