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Friday, March 16, 2012

"Lone Wolf" Jodi Picoult's Latest Doesn't Howl

Jodi Picoult's novel of family and natural instincts falls short
 only in the abilitiy to have a strong impact throughout. 
The best part was the information
on the wolves.

Published by:  Atria/Simon & Schuster
Pages:  421
See:  http://www.jodipicoult.com/

A life hanging in the balance . . . a family torn apart. The #1 internationally bestselling author Jodi Picoult tells an unforgettable story about family secrets, love, and letting go.
In the wild, when a wolf knows its time is over, when it knows it is of no more use to its pack, it may sometimes choose to slip away. Dying apart from its family, it stays proud and true to its nature. Humans aren’t so lucky.
Luke Warren has spent his life researching wolves. He has written about them, studied their habits intensively, and even lived with them for extended periods of time. In many ways, Luke understands wolf dynamics better than those of his own family. His wife, Georgie, has left him, finally giving up on their lonely marriage. His son, Edward, twenty-four, fled six years ago, leaving behind a shattered relationship with his father. Edward understands that some things cannot be fixed, though memories of his domineering father still inflict pain. Then comes a frantic phone call: Luke has been gravely injured in a car accident with Edward’s younger sister, Cara.
Suddenly everything changes: Edward must return home to face the father he walked out on at age eighteen. He and Cara have to decide their father’s fate together. Though there’s no easy answer, questions abound: What secrets have Edward and his sister kept from each other? What hidden motives inform their need to let their father die . . . or to try to keep him alive? What would Luke himself want? How can any family member make such a decision in the face of guilt, pain, or both? And most importantly, to what extent have they all forgotten what a wolf never forgets: that each member of a pack needs the others, and that sometimes survival means sacrifice?
Another tour de force by Picoult, Lone Wolf brilliantly describes the nature of a family: the love, protection, and strength it can offer—and the price we might have to pay for those gifts. What happens when the hope that should sustain a family is the very thing tearing it apart?

The Dames Review:

Disappointed.  I wanted to love this book.  I tried to find interest in the human struggle, but it failed in light of the naturalist information of Luke Warren and his wolf pack.    What happened after a while was that the book wained and fizzled out.  The question or the moral dilemma regarding what constitutes "life" in brain damage and vegetative states was simply not tackled here in earnest, and that left a gaping hole.  Cara's and Edward's tug of war over "pulling the plug" or not on their father, and who should do it because one was beloved more than the other, acted as the central point of the novel.  I felt it was a book not well thought out.  Something was missing.  Something important was left out that should have anchored the whole. 

I'm a huge Picoult fan who sits on the edge of my chair when I have a new novel of hers in my hands.  I struggled through the beginning of this book because I kept  hoping it would pick up.  I loved the parts about the behaviors of wolves in the wild and how Luke Warren found a way to become a part of them.  What I found watered down, the human family parts of the story, made the book boring and took away from it as a whole.  The family secrets were over rated.

This isn't Jodi Picoult at her best.  I'm sorry I can only rate this book at a C level.  It's a book I'd only recommend to friends and readers as an eBook or paperback option.

3.5 stars howling at the moon in sadness


NOTE:  I apologize for any strangeness you see on my blog at this time.  I'm having problems with my computer!!



I've only read a few of Picoult's books and read this one last week. I enjoyed it more than you did. I'm going to see her tomorrow!

Jennifer | Mrs Q Book Addict

I haven't read many Jodi Picoult books, but I haven't really loved any. I find her books drawn out, and very slow paced.


I'll be seeing her on Sunday! :] I've read all of her books, and maybe that's the problem...I'm used to loving what she writes. I value your opinion, you know!! I'll be checking out your blog to see what you have to say. :]


Hi Deb
Thank you for following my blog,I'm glad that you like it.You have 6 or 7 blogs,which looks great,wow,how you get time for all of them.
Have a nice blogging.

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings

Hi Deb, Thanks for your note on Shelfari. I haven't read a Picoult book, yet, obviously this isn't a good recommendation for amd introduction. What would you consider as a good choice for her books?


Thank you for the thorough review. I haven't read any of Picoult yet - what are some of the books you consider her best?

I've had a look around here and am enjoying your blog; I've added it to Google reader among blogs I'm following.

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