Thursday, June 11, 2009

Book Review: Handle with Care

Before I started Handle with Care by Jodi Picoult I already knew what I was getting myself into. I knew that the subject matter would be intense, I would love or hate every character because they would all narrate at least one chapter and that the ending would be surreal. And I wasn't wrong.

After reading My Sister's Keeper and 19 Minutes I kind of knew what to expect from Jodi's writing so I felt prepared for what I was getting myself into.

Handle with Care follows the story of a young girl, Willow, who has Type III OI and the difficult battle that ensues within her family when her mother decides to sue her obstetrician (who is also her best friend) for wrongful birth malpractice. (full synopsis can be found here)

So what did I think? I don't think I can say I looooved it, but I definitely liked it. I do love how Jodi switches narrators and you can get a feel of everyone's intentions/emotions/reactions. It definitely made sense for such a controversial story where every character had their own opinions. I also love that every character that narrated directed it all to Willow, it was all about her.

In addition to the varying narrators, I love how none of them are perfect. Jodi never makes perfect characters. Although someone may seem fine to everyone else, once they are narrating you get a look into their life and their issues and none of them are without a flaw of some sort.

I also liked that I learned something new. I believe the only time I had heard about OI was on an episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition or something like that, so the fact that this book is all about it really opened my eyes to what an extreme disability it is. It was hard to imagine a five year old going through it all, but nonetheless it happens and wow, I couldn't help but feel sorry for Willow and her family throughout the story.

On the other hand there were just one thing I didn't really like about the book. Like I said before, the end of Jodi's books are always a big twist and usually incredibly emotional. To me, the end of this book seemed so quick and all of a sudden. Although I predicted what would happen, I didn't like how it played out.

But with that said, I was still a fan of the book and would definitely recommend you pick it up if you need a seriously intense story to make you look at your life a little bit differently because that's what every Jodi book does and that's alright by me.


Ali said...


I am a MAJOR fan of Jodi Picoult. I read all of her novels in a very short amount of times AND met her and looove her.

But I read Handle With Care, and while I really liked the book, I HATED the ending. I didn't see the point. And while I don't wanna give anything away for anyone reading this who hasn't read the book yet, I just felt like it was...unnecessary.

amanda said...

luckily, this didn't give anything away. haha.

except that the ending wasn't great. and well, i usually don't like jodi's endings anyway. so i'm not expecting anything big. they always seem rushed to me. mmm.

Tdub said...

I also LOVE Joi Picoult. It is very true..all of her books do make you look at like a little differently. They all focus on the gray areas of life. The Place between right and wrong. Salem Falls and Vanishing Acts are really good. Though I have to say...The Pact is the very first one I read and still my favorite. It got me hooked! :)

Lexilooo said...

I pretty much agree with you here. Maybe I've read too many of her books by now (about half of them, I'd say), but I totally predicted the ending and still wasn't pleased with it. It seemed like such a weird way for it to happen, and I felt like it could have been done in a different way and been better.

Do you plan to see the movie My Sisters Keeper when it comes out?

Auburn Kat said...

You need to read Plain Truth by Jodi...I loved it!

Jessica said...

The only book I have read by her is The Pact and its one of my favorite books. But I plan on reading all her books at some point. Especially My Sisters Keeper...before I see the movie of course

Katie cat said...

I am a sort of fan of Jodie Picoult. I have read Second Glance and Salem Falls - both dealing with supernatural type stuff I guess. I can't wait for the new movie though!

When I worked as an intern at Simon & Schuster, I helped the production editor fix typos and formatting in 19 Minutes. Were the any typos??? heh..

San said...

I have two of her books sitting on my shelf, waiting to be read... I am looking forward to it.

Kate said...

I thought the ending was AWFUL. The rest of the book was OK, but it was a bit too My Sisters Keeper, just less awesome.

(I'm a MAJOR Jodi fan)

MH said...

yeah, I love her style, the narrators, the fact the characters are not perfect (why should they be??)... but her books are painful!! She makes us get so close to the characters and their lives... oh god, i think I'll really skip this one, for now.