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This book is gut wrenching and not for the faint of heart. The opening chapter had my heart pumping and my adrenaline on high alert. Though subsequentThis book is gut wrenching and not for the faint of heart. The opening chapter had my heart pumping and my adrenaline on high alert. Though subsequent chapters are seemingly more calm and character driven, there is a devastating revelation that had me sobbing hysterically for several pages. I share this as this book is not for everyone, especially those who shy away from reading any book containing violent imagery. This book handles these topics respectfully, nothing is gratuitous, but that doesn’t make them any less disturbing or difficult to read.
But this book worked for me. I’m not always a fan of the character driven novel, but I could not put this book down. The older I get, the more I discover my own peculiar interest in reading about the routines of others. I’m fascinated to not only learn about these things, but to also discover what drives them. If that is not your cup of tea, you may struggle with The Good Daughter.
There is so much to say about this novel, yet I am fearful of saying too much as I don’t want to prevent other readers from discovering its contents in their own way. I found it to be a great read and very well balanced between plot and character, humor, sorrow and fear. If my previous comments didn’t deter you, chances are high that you will like it too....more
My love for this novel was unexpected. It is such an absorbing, subtle story.
Truth be told, I almost set it aside. The plot is entirely character drivMy love for this novel was unexpected. It is such an absorbing, subtle story.
Truth be told, I almost set it aside. The plot is entirely character driven and the first chapter or two did not hold my interest, namely because I didn't much care for the character Flora, who is one of the story’s two narrators. Given my strong sense of dislike for Flora, I was left with a bit of a conundrum. I had to weigh out how much more time I wanted to devote to Flora in hope of narrator two being compelling enough to compensate for Flora. After a small internal debate, I settled on reading just one more chapter before deciding to cast the book aside. It was the right decision as I was introduced to the story’s second narrator, Ingrid, and from that moment on, the hooks were set.
Things I loved: • The non-linear way in which the character's stories are told. It heightened the intrigue and kept me hungry for the books’ end. • The personal letter format used to portray Ingrid’s point of view. By learning about her character thru such a revealing method, I was enabled to emote a personal connection to Ingrid. • The coastal setting. It generated a strong sense of tranquility, which makes the revelations shared throughout the story all the more distressing for their in-congruence.
Those things said, this is frankly a very depressing novel, which contains no small amount of shallow, unlikable characters. But there is something about a story of misfits that calls to me, and lingers, long after the story ends.
P.S. My initial impression of Flora did not change, though I came to appreciate her story more by the conclusion of the story....more
This book didn't land for me. The story and the characters were a bit too vanilla and as such, the non-linear story telling, used to draw out the plotThis book didn't land for me. The story and the characters were a bit too vanilla and as such, the non-linear story telling, used to draw out the plot and keep the reader guessing only served to drive me up the wall....more
Don't ask me why I read this...I really can't explain it. There are so many sex scenes within this book that James makes sex boring. I mean, who has tDon't ask me why I read this...I really can't explain it. There are so many sex scenes within this book that James makes sex boring. I mean, who has this kind of time?
I was bored. The writing is so, so horrendous. The characters are ridiculous, fantasy figures, who live in an alternate reality that somehow exceeds itself.
Yet....the series is mindlessly entertaining. Just like the movies....more
Small Great Things is my first Jodi Picoult. I had what is now perhaps an unfair bias towards her books, associating them writers such as Nicholas Sp Small Great Things is my first Jodi Picoult. I had what is now perhaps an unfair bias towards her books, associating them writers such as Nicholas Sparks, who I find rather trite with his tried and true formulaic books designed to provoke the reader to have an emotional response.
If Small Great Things is at all reflective of Picoult’s other works, I’ve been severely underestimating her talent for writing challenging, thought provoking stories. Small Great Things is a page turner. I had to discipline myself not skip ahead as I just had to know how the story would unfold. And what a story it was. I loved everything about it. The setting (hospitals and courtrooms are my favorite), the plot, and most of all the characters, no matter how off putting or frustrating they were at times.
As you can discern from the summary, Small Great Things tackles subject matter (race, privilege, prejudice, the justice system) that could easily become heavy handed in the wrong hands. Luckily, I did not get the sense that Picoult was attempting to be a spokesperson for something she herself has not experienced. Rather, Picoult developed well rounded characters in Ruth, an African American Labor and Delivery nurse, her white public defender, Kennedy McQuarrie, and the neo-Nazi father of the deceased child, Turk Bauer. The story moves through each of their perspectives and paints a picture of each of their lives that is as insightful as it is enthralling.
I learned something while reading this story. Perhaps even several somethings and I could not get it out of my head days after I had finished reading it. To me, that is a testament to a great piece of fiction....more