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Harvesting the Heart

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3.60  ·  Rating details ·  41,885 ratings  ·  2,685 reviews
From the #1 New York Times Bestselling author of Leaving Time Paige has only a few vivid memories of her mother, who abandoned her at five years old. Now, having left her father behind in Chicago for dreams of art school and marriage to an ambitious young doctor, she finds herself with a child of her own. But her mother's absence and shameful memories of her past force her ...more
Paperback, 453 pages
Published April 1st 1995 by Penguin Books (first published January 1st 1993)
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3.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  41,885 ratings  ·  2,685 reviews


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Jen
Jul 16, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one--not even Picoult fans
This book lacked what I like about Jodi Picoult books--twisting plot lines, multiple, relatable characters

I thought the plot was highly predictable. I didn't care for the main character--a young woman whose mother left her at five, had an abortion at 18, had a kid and didn't think she would be a good mother b/c she didn't have one and aborted her first baby.

I didn't relate to the marital problems. I couldn't understand why the two characters ever got married in the first place-they were from ver
...more
Carey Henderson
Jodi Picoult is one of my favorite authors, so when I found this novel for .75 at a library book sale AND I had never read it, it was all I could do to hold back the squeals & not make a complete fool out of myself. Jodi Picoult writes about hot, current topics in a fictional way (suicide, stem cell research, kidnappings, murders, school shootings etc), topics that are unfortunately all to common. She puts “stories” behind these issues & makes you think about these topics, how would you ...more
Rachel
Feb 19, 2008 rated it it was ok
Generally speaking, I love the author. While it was decent, this book didn't live up to my high expectations of her. The entire novel was centered around only 2 characters. I'm a huge fan of character development, but it seemed like she was trying to convince herself as well as the reader of the character's motivations by repetition.

Spoiler alert - Basically it boils down to rich boy meets eccentric girl with a past. Boy unknowingly trys to change the very things he fell in love with. Girl becom
...more
Britta
Nov 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing
"He wandered off, leaving me wondering why white people named girl babies things like Hope and Faith and Patience - names they could never live up to - and black mothers called their daughters Mercy, Deliverance, Salvation - crosses they'd always have to bear."

"That someone like [him] could want me was still overwhelming. He held me the way a child holds a snowflake, lightly, as if he knew in the back of his mind I might disappear in the blink of an eye. He wore his self-assurance like a soft ov
...more
Jackie Marrs
Aug 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jodipicoult
I read this book this spring and it was a hard book for me to read. It is about a girl whose mother walks out on her and her father when she is a little girl. The girl then spends the rest of her life trying to make sense of that. Her hopes as a young girl were that her mother would come back for her. Subsequently, she kept a packed suitcase under her bed most her childhood. By the time she is graduating high school, she knows that she too must leave her father and her life behind to try and fin ...more
Suzanne
Dec 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5*

First and foremost, I am not a mother and I believe being a parent is probably one of the most difficult but rewarding roles in life. That being said it just has never been for me. This is a story that demonstrates how difficult the role can be to some parents not just mothers, whereas it comes naturally to others. I did not warm up to Paige in this book and honestly I found Nicholas a bit more sympathetic but not by too much. I believe both main characters had aspects that readers will find
...more
Debbie Lancaster
Dec 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
I longed to be a mother. I wanted children, lots of them. I have four of the most beautiful people you could ever meet. Motherhood is hard! Taking care of a newborn is difficult. There were times I wished the children would just go away but I never thought of leaving. Some people never have children because they can't find it in their hearts to share and give of themselves. Some walk away from their children. Some women abort. We form opinions and judge. Are they selfish? A bad person? A bad mot ...more
Brittany
Apr 19, 2008 rated it liked it
This book was alright. Both main characters were annoying as all hell, just complaining about how their spouse wouldn't be more caring to them and pay attention. They pretty much ignored each other the first half of the book, and then BAM! Paige leaves and then their marriage falls apart. But in the end they still love each other. Um, happy ending? Yes. Would happen in real life? Hells no. See, LaPierre, happy books aren't real.
Karah
Nov 10, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
As much as I like jodi Picoult books, this definitely wasn't one of my favorites. It probably was my least favorite of all of her books. I did love her descriptions of people, places, and events but some of it was way overdone. She seemed to ramble on and on about previous events in the characters' lives or some odd description of a place they once visited or experienced.

The story is about a young woman who runs away from her home in Chicago and finds herself in Cambridge. She waits tables and
...more
Marieanne Fabiano
This book was most definitely not awesome! I disliked each of the characters, who each had no redeeming qualities and yet, I could not put it down. It's one of those books that you hate reading, but that you must see through to the end. In short, this is a story about a woman (Paige) who was abandoned by her mother at the age of 5. When Paige turns 18, she has an abortion and runs away from home. Her new home becomes Boston and in just a few short days of living there, Paige meets Nicholas, an u ...more
Regina
Oct 14, 2009 rated it did not like it
This book was really bad. It had the feel of one of those insipid made-for-tv movies.

I’ve read several of Picoult’s other novels. They often have some kind of topical theme. Not exactly the most thought provoking works, they usually present the theme in a somewhat entertaining fashion. This novel (with its theme of ambiguous motherhood) was a complete disappointment.

Perhaps the worst aspect is character development (or lack thereof). The young mother is not sympathetic. She’s self destructive,
...more
Anita Smith
Jul 31, 2015 rated it did not like it
Sweet Jesus, this was the worst Picoult book I've ever read. Boring plot full of holes I could drive a truck through, and self-absorbed, completely unlikable characters, with the exception of Paige's father, who deserved better than the hand he was dealt. Hell, he deserved better than being in this book. I'm as big a Picoult fan as anyone, but I was sorely disappointed in this one. Looks like the library is getting an extra donation this weekend. Hopefully the next person likes it better than I ...more
Kyra
Jun 16, 2014 rated it did not like it
So once in a blue moon, I read a Jodi Picoult opus. Because it's there. Because I am feeling brain dead. Whatever. And usually they are cliched but OKAY. Jodi can string her sentences together, and she writes about moms and kids and relationships and stuff we can all relate to, especially when we are feeling slightly brain dead. So I need to announce that I am seriously disappointed ...nay, DISGUSTED with the sloppy research in Jodi's 1995 Harvesting the Heart, the love story of a poor girl from ...more
Petra Eggs
May 26, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, reviewed
I hadn't wanted to read another Jodi Picoult. After starting on the high note of My Sister's Keeper and working my way through a totally formulaic series always with a twist at the end, I didn't hold out much hope for this book but it was the only one I had for a long night in a hotel in a foreign land.

It was quite different in that it was distinctly overwritten, and in parts quite beautifully-written too. Usually I think of Picoult as a storyteller whose characters are somewhat sketchy ciphers
...more
Kelsey Hagenah
Sep 15, 2017 rated it did not like it
no.
Mafi
Feb 15, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eng, trad, 2018, na-fila-2018
Temos apenas dois pontos de vista, que é algo que não é muito comum na autora. Paige, já está na fase adulta mas ainda sofre com o abandono da mãe enquanto era uma criança. Aos dezoito, ela própria deixa o pai e aventura-se sozinha na vida de adulta. Contudo os seus planos mudam quando conhece Nicholas, um estudante muito promissor de medicina. Os dois casam-se muito precocemente e com uma gravidez inesperada, Paige encontra-se mais perdida que nunca, sentindo-se uma inútil com o seu pequeno Max ...more
Susan
Jan 18, 2014 rated it really liked it

Harvesting the Heart – Jodi Picoult

I do quite enjoy Jodi Picoult's books but have started to find them a bit formulaic. this one is a bit different. I thought when I read this that it must be a newer book but it is apparently one of her older works. I have to say I prefer this to others she wrote later then.

She still takes a controversial subject and this time it is post natal depression/ struggling with motherhood. This is combined with attitudes of those who have been brought up to think they
...more
Laura McWilliams
First off, before starting the book, I noticed it was on a list of books not to read while pregnant and thought, interesting fact. I started reading the book and a few weeks later found out I was pregnant (surprise!). At one point, the book hit a bit too close to home which made me crabby and my husband banned me from continuing. Thankfully, I didn't share the main character's past, just caught myself sympathizing with the fear of being a new mother. After about a month off, I picked it up again ...more
Sara
Jan 31, 2013 rated it did not like it
Jodi Picoults worst. The characters were so dull and predictable--the pretentious, unemotional and rich doctor, the confused, artsy, vulnerable little girl...all her characters in her other novels are so unique..strong..someone you don't see every day and you want to meet. I've seen and read about the characters she wrote about this time. They lacked imagination. In addition, the plot was predictable. I pushed through the whole book expecting the crazy plot twists she is so famous for. Nothing. ...more
Judy
Jun 20, 2016 rated it did not like it
If you are a fan of Jodi Picoult, do not read this book. Put. This. Book. Down. And. Back. Away. It's terrible. Or if not actually terrible, it certainly doesn't do justice to the other books she has written, which deal with complex and current subjects like organ transplants or transsexuality. It was copywritten in 1993, so it must be one of her earliest books, before she had figured out how to write a good book.

Is it about abandonment? Art? Horses? Open heart surgery? Who knows? This book wand
...more
Pratibha Suku
Aug 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Vetaran Jodi Picoult reader. People looking for easy simple lovestory.
I like this Author. I am one of those who must have read majority of her works. And so I can safely say this is not what we love Jodi Picoult for.

This is one of her books which I feel goes in diameterically opposite direction than what it was meant to be. More of a love story than about motherhood.

This being her early works proves only that she is a good storyteller. If you have read some of her recent work like Small Great Things you can easily find how much our author has evolved over time.

Wo
...more
K's Corner
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is my first non-five-star JP book. Started out great, then dragged on and on and didn't come back to life for me until the last two chapters.

The story is about a young girl, Paige who at a young age decides to leave home without a word to anyone and starts to drive east. She meets someone, falls in love, gets married and has a baby. Then the struggles--she struggles with her marriage, motherhood and pretty much life in general. She is haunted by her past and the secrets she has left behind.
...more
ChapterOne
Jun 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
For me, taking a break from reading is a happy place on its own. You know you’ll come back to it. You know you’ll love it just as much. You know you will love it always. There will be books until the end of time. It’s not the kind of happiness that makes you bounce with joy – it’s more of a quiet truth that makes you smile.
BookishStitcher
Aug 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this book when my son was small (so almost a decade ago). I remember being the same age as the main character, who was early 20's. I could relate a lot to her having trouble being pretty young and trying to figure out the whole motherhood thing.
Georgette
Apr 30, 2012 rated it liked it
OK, I didn't totally hate this Jodi Picoult. I didn't, however, understand how she lost the plot so efficiently in the last quarter of the book.
Nicholas and Paige have a contented marriage- until Paige finds out she's pregnant. She's filled with mixed emotions, feeling a need to flee, or miscarry the child. She ties this in with the fact that her mother abandoned her and her father when she was 18. This also ties back into an abortion Paige had when with her first ex. The conflicting feelings a
...more
Angelica
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katy
Jun 09, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: mothers
Shelves: 2008, own, fiction
This is a book I won't forget for a long time. I have to say, I've recently had a fascination with mothers and pregnancy. I mean, what is it like having a baby? It seems like a miracle to me.

"Harvesting the Heart" (Easily the most cheesy title I can imagine) was frank and colorful. Paige is one of the strangest characters I have ever read about. One minute, she's as wise as a ninety year old woman. The next, she's child-like and naive. At some points, I wondered if the author was suggesting that
...more
Heather Hocking
Nov 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
This book irritated the heck out of me. A mother runs away from her child because she doesn't think she'll be a good mother. What the heck? Well, to start with don't run away from your kid. The main character annoyed me with how much she felt sorry for herself. Why would you miss your child's most important first year? She knew how it felt because her own mother did it to her, so she just does it to her own kid? Lame. And the husband was a self righteous prick too. Don't waste your time with thi ...more
Denise
Jul 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
I love Jodi picoult but this was hard to get through...I thought characters seemed endearing at first but eventually I stopped liking them altogether and didn't care what happened to them...was really hard to get through the last 1/3 but I had already invested the time so I had to finish based on principle
Denise
Aug 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
I usually love reading Jodi Picoult's books. Harvesting the Heart was her second book. The characters were ok but I did not like either one. Rich boy, poor girl, doctor vs young uneducated girl. Summer read at best.
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Horses 1 7 Oct 27, 2017 12:42PM  
A Million More Pages: Harvesting The Heart: Feb 22 14 27 Mar 07, 2015 05:06PM  
Paige and Nicholas's relationship? 7 82 Jan 29, 2014 04:57PM  
  • Novels by Jodi Picoult
  • The Deep Blue Sea for Beginners (Newport, Rhode Island, #2)
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)
  • A Woman's Place
  • If You Believe
  • Secrets She Left Behind (Before the Storm #2)
  • Things I Want My Daughters to Know
  • A Theory of Relativity
  • Strange Fits of Passion
  • Happiness Sold Separately
  • The World Below
  • All the Numbers
47,919 followers
Jodi Picoult is the author of twenty-four novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Small Great Things, Leaving Time, 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, A SPARK OF LIGHT, is available in hardcove
...more
“I knew that somewhere God was laughing. He had taken the other half of my heart, the one person who knew me better than I knew myself, and He had done what nothing else could do. By bringing us together, He had set into motion the one thing that could tear us apart.” 237 likes
“Suddenly I realize that this is what I've been waiting for - a man who depends entirely on me... I dreamed for years of a man who couldn't live without me, a man who pictured my face when he closed his eyes, who loved me when I was a mess in the morning and when dinner was late and even when I overloaded the washing machine and burned out the motor. [My son] stares up at me as if I can do no wrong. I have always wanted someone who treats me the way he does; I just didn't know that I'd have to give birth to him.” 168 likes
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