Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Tenth Circle - Jodi Picoult [August/06]

This is the newest novel by Jodi Picoult, and of the ones I have read by her so far, my least favourite. Hopefully the next book I read by her is really good, or I am not sure if I will keep her up. She seems to be one of those authors that are hit or miss for me.

From the back:

Trixie Stone is fourteen years old and in love for the first time. She's also the light of her father's life - a straight-A student; a freshman in high school who is pretty and popular; a girl who's always looked up to Daniel Stone as a hero. Until, that is, her world is turned upside down with a single act of violence... and suddenly everything Trixie has believed about her family-and herself-seems to be a lie. Could the young boy who once made Trixie's face fill with light when he came to the door have been the one to end her childhood forever? She says that he is, and that is all it takes to make Daniel, a seemingly mild-mannered comic book artist with a history he has hidden even from his family, venture to hell and back in order to protect his daughter.

THE TENTH CIRCLE looks at that delicate moment when a child learns that her parents don't know all the answers and when being a good parent means letting go of your child. It asks whether you can reinvent yourself in the course of a lifetime, or if your mistakes are carried forever-if life is, as in any good comic book, a struggle to control good and evil, or if good and evil control you.

Alright. Since I have started this blog, I have recorded my thoughts on Jodi Picoult. I read my first book by her at about the New Year mark, and this is the 4th book I have read by her. I find I have an easier time bragging up a good book than explaining why I didn't like a bad book. I will sit here and look for every good moment and still probably give it a half decent mark for the good parts and ignore the bad. I think it is the whole, I don't want to be mean, thinking.

Anyways, I had said with Vanishing Acts that I read, I think it was last month, that I was not impressed with the novel. Vanishing Acts had good points to it, though. With The Tenth Circle, I enjoyed the first 100 pages or so. I thought we were looking at a good book, and I was curious to see how things were going to play out. Then, it just died. I started to notice that I was reading, but at the same time I was skimming. I have it now, though. The thing I don't like about Picoult is all the anti-climatic stuff. It is okay for a while, but this book was all this thinking. The father was thinking about his life in Alaska and his comic, the mother was thinking about her job and Dante's Inferno, and the daughter was a typical teenager. It's just, you would get into the story, and then there would like 5 pages of pointless rambling and then the story again. There was just too much, well, crap! I couldn't get into the story at all.

So, this was a bust. I don't recommend it. She does have a few good books, but the pointless rambling, well, okay it sort of has a point to the story, but I think there is too much of it.

For the good start, I give it a 2/5. Rather glad I didn't buy this one.


  1. I read The Tenth Circle after reading some of Picoult's other novels. I did like Vanishing Acts better than The Tenth Circle, but in general I tend to find her writing rather maudlin and her gross overuse of similes aggravate me. Her book jacket descriptions always fool me, the plot sounds good, then I begin reading and remember why I don't like her novels. I need to just stop. Glad to hear I am not the only one that finds her books less than stellar. She seems to have quite a following.

  2. You sumed up my feelings very well. I never buy her new, only get her second hand, so I have never paid more than 5 bucks for a book by her. I did like My Sister's Keeper, but maybe I should have just stuck with that one.

  3. I read My Sister's Keeper awhile back and really did not like it. It was enough to turn me off from her books entirely. A friend of mine loved it though, so to each their own!

  4. I almost wish the same thing would have happened with me... then I wouldn't have other books by her in my to read pile...

  5. Anonymous4:25 PM

    did anyone notice the mistakes written that confuse the reader. When they are all in Alaska she keeps referring to the town they are visiting as Bethel, though the town they live in Maine is Bethel I can't read the end because it is annoying me so much


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