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I just finished The Precious One by Marias de los Santos. Another dysfunctional family book but well crafted. She was a poet before she wrote fiction. Her writing is very descriptive and I may try another book by her.  

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1 hour ago, frankie80 said:

My book club has been trying to get me to choose a Picoult book for years. I finally gave in just to get it over with. We read this book. I'm just not a fan of someone who seems to write with a checklist - got a racist (check, actually several) got a angry black woman (check, the sister) got a  skinny white woman who means well but hasn't a clue (check, the lawyer) and so on. I won't spoil the end but there is a twist that is utterly ridiculous. Read Roxanne Gay's review of this book. She says it's a good effort and I guess she could be right. It's not awful but I just don't see why she's such a big deal. Her writing is just lukewarm to me.

  https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/16/books/review/jodi-picoult-small-great-things-roxane-gay.html

Many of her books seem to have a checklist, in that she sets up maximum conflict. Plotting may seem by the numbers, but I think the way she writes characters and stories is very thought-provoking. It provokes a lot of thinking on my part anyway. 

She's not in the same class as Anne Tyler, of course. One is a literary writer, and that one isn't Jodi Picoult. But for me, Picoult is very engrossing and worthwhile. I've read a shit-ton of her books. This was one of my favorites. 

I agree that the twist you speak of strained the bonds of credulity, if one is familiar with the laws of heredity. It's possible, of course, but unlikely. To be honest, I almost forgot about it. Very pot-boiler-y. It didn't spoil the book for me, but it was extraneous and cheap.

I liked and admired your two favorite Tyler books but I didn't LOVE them. I preferred The Accidental Tourist to Homesick Restaurant.

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Thanks for the link to the Roxana Gay review. I agree with pretty much everything.  I suspect Picoult won't be writing about race again, at least not front and center in the way Small Great Things is.

I very much liked Picoult's differentiation between equality and equity. I felt I learned some things from the novel and I didn't expect to do so. I am convinced that it's an important book for many Whites to read at this time in our history. (That's where I agree with Gay the most.)

 

 

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1 hour ago, frankie80 said:

I just finished The Precious One by Marias de los Santos. Another dysfunctional family book but well crafted. She was a poet before she wrote fiction. Her writing is very descriptive and I may try another book by her.  

I haven't read that one, but I've read three of her books. I loved her first two novels but not this one:


https://www.amazon.com/gp/review/R3SAXI5YQS8397?ref_=glimp_1rv_cl

Ironically, my biggest problem with this novel was its unbelievable denouement. So if that was a problem for you with Small Great Things, I don't recommend reading Falling Together. LOL

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Carrying on my Steinbeck binge with my first-read of this one. Travels With Charley. So far, so good.

Y'know, it's been nearly ten years since I was a teenager reading The Grapes Of Wrath which means I've been reading Steinbeck (on and off) for the same amount of times and I still have a few more to read for the first time. I'm trying to make this magic last for as long as I possibly can but at the same time just want to read them all now.

61pFewn9ILL._SX323_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

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I recently read Paul Halpern's books "Edge of the Universe. A voyage to the cosmic horizon and beyond" and "Einstein's dice and Schrödinger's cat". Both great. I also read Jim Baggott's "Higgs. The invention and discovery of God's particle".

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Not only did Violet survive the Titanic, but she also survived the sinking of its sister ship Britannic, and was aboard the Olympic when it collided with another ship and was seriously damaged.  I haven't got there yet though, still reading about her early life in Argentina where she was born to Irish parents.  What an interesting life she had.

51y9wdXrx+L._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

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I'm halfway through Wild by Cheryl Strayed. 

image.thumb.jpeg.6a1874bee763e5e836855d8ef03976c9.jpeg

I usually hate watching the film before I've read the book, but I saw it a couple of years back (although I didn't pay much attention) and I'm actually kind of glad in the sense that it's helping me to visualise it a lot more. I'm also glad because the book is way better than the film and I'd never had known had I not picked up the book a month or so ago. Anyway, it's the first book in quite some time that I've consistently been reading. I've had a problem with concentration recently and I really feel like I've gotten into this book and that's always a good sign. It is definitely interesting and has great imagery. I do sometimes wonder how much of it is 100% true though. 

It's been somewhat of an escape for me these past couple of weeks, and occasionally I feel like I'm hiking the PCT right along with her. I think it's one that I may read again and I look forward to finishing the rest of it. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/24/2018 at 10:56 PM, Skin2Skin said:

Many of her books seem to have a checklist, in that she sets up maximum conflict. Plotting may seem by the numbers, but I think the way she writes characters and stories is very thought-provoking. It provokes a lot of thinking on my part anyway. 

She's not in the same class as Anne Tyler, of course. One is a literary writer, and that one isn't Jodi Picoult. But for me, Picoult is very engrossing and worthwhile. I've read a shit-ton of her books. This was one of my favorites. 

I agree that the twist you speak of strained the bonds of credulity, if one is familiar with the laws of heredity. It's possible, of course, but unlikely. To be honest, I almost forgot about it. Very pot-boiler-y. It didn't spoil the book for me, but it was extraneous and cheap.

I liked and admired your two favorite Tyler books but I didn't LOVE them. I preferred The Accidental Tourist to Homesick Restaurant.

*****************************************************

Thanks for the link to the Roxana Gay review. I agree with pretty much everything.  I suspect Picoult won't be writing about race again, at least not front and center in the way Small Great Things is.

I very much liked Picoult's differentiation between equality and equity. I felt I learned some things from the novel and I didn't expect to do so. I am convinced that it's an important book for many Whites to read at this time in our history. (That's where I agree with Gay the most.)

 

 

Thanks for the long reply, Skin! See you on Goodreads!

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1 hour ago, Skin2Skin said:

I've had this near the top of my TBR list forever!

Go for it....I've read it before ( 2009 ) each story ( I think there are 13 ) is quite short , enjoyable and with nice thought provoking undertones. My copy has good. ,short , explanatory notes.

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On 26/01/2018 at 9:28 PM, -Sussudio- said:

Carrying on my Steinbeck binge with my first-read of this one. Travels With Charley. So far, so good.

Y'know, it's been nearly ten years since I was a teenager reading The Grapes Of Wrath which means I've been reading Steinbeck (on and off) for the same amount of times and I still have a few more to read for the first time. I'm trying to make this magic last for as long as I possibly can but at the same time just want to read them all now.

61pFewn9ILL._SX323_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

Finally finished this. Lord, that man can write.

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