Review: My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult

Quick review for a quick read. I first read “My Sister’s Keeper” many years ago, but I wanted to do a re-reading of it before I wrote a review. I think my opinion on the book is about the same as it was several years back. It’s one of those books that can either work for you or completely throw you by the wayside, though the moral question of the book is very gripping alongside the way Picoult’s prose gradually weaves you along the journey.

I almost want to say that there were too many POV points in this novel, though I didn’t have much trouble following them. The story revolves Kate and Anna, their parents, and the investigators that are part of the case. Kate has been terminally ill for her entire life, so her parents decide to have Anna in the hopes of providing Kate the chance to live with donations that genetically match Kate’s needs. Yet, Anna – at 13 – decides that she doesn’t want to go through the pain of the donations anymore, that she wants the right to her own medical decisions. So, she hires a lawyer and decides to sue her parents.

This goes over about as well as you might expect, which is to say not well at all. Picoult provides great amount of tension with respect to the fallout and family’s sentiments throughout the case, from the time the case starts to the courtroom and ultimately the novel’s conclusion. I think the ending shocked me less this time around than when I initially read it, but I’ll admit my first kneejerk reaction was “That was all kinds of wrong.” But reflecting on it now, it does have a cruel irony that while I wish it could’ve turned in a different direction without going for the gut twist, the decisions and moral points that the narrative brings up are still very valid.

I didn’t always appreciate some of the detours from the original story. The romances in here seemed force fed to me, and I couldn’t reconcile the tone of that versus the tone of the main plot. Still, I thought it was a decent read for what it chose to expound upon. Good multi-cast audio narration as well.

Overall score: 3/5 stars.


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