Anne Broyles's Reviews > Jacob Have I Loved

Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson
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Nov 02, 2009

Read in October, 2009

Sara Louise is a prickly, difficult character, and not the easiest person with whom to identify, but Paterson's writing kept me involved. I loved learning about a new setting (Chesapeake Bay) and profession (crabbing, oystering). I've never known twins who didn't have some sort of connection with each other, so I found it sad and possibly unbelievable that "Wheeze" could hold so much anger at Caroline without sharing any bond.

Yet, giving over my disbelief in the twins' lack of connection and Wheeze's long-simmering anger, I let myself enter the story which, for some reason, I have never read until now.

Because all of Wheeze's resolution takes place just past childhood, this seems an odd YA choice yet almost thirty years of readers prove that logic wrong. Paterson's ability to get inside her main character lets us feel Wheeze's genuine anger, abandonment and sadness. It felt like in order to find herself, Sarah Louise had to leave home and break off from all that had sustained her during childhood--not out--of-the-ordinary, just sad. I only wish she had been able to reconcile with her sister and best friend.
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