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My Sister's Keeper PDF, ePub eBook


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Title: My Sister's Keeper
Author: Jodi Picoult
Publisher: Published February 1st 2005 by Washington Square Press (first published April 6th 2004)
ISBN: 9780743454537
Status : FREE Rating :
4.6 out of 5

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Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate -- a life and a role that she has never challenge Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate -- a life and a role that she has never challenged... until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister—and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. A provocative novel that raises some important ethical issues, My Sister's Keeper is the story of one family's struggle for survival at all human costs and a stunning parable for all time.

30 review for My Sister's Keeper

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Have you ever read a book that really pissed you off? Pissed you off so much all you could do was rant about it until everyone told you to just shut up? This is that book for me. Picoult's dialogue is excellent, but her characters annoy me and the ending of this book was such a cop-out I almost wrote her an angry letter about it, but decided against it, as she'd never read it anyway. Basically, "My Sister's Keeper" is about a family with three kids - I forget their real names, so I'm giving them f Have you ever read a book that really pissed you off? Pissed you off so much all you could do was rant about it until everyone told you to just shut up? This is that book for me. Picoult's dialogue is excellent, but her characters annoy me and the ending of this book was such a cop-out I almost wrote her an angry letter about it, but decided against it, as she'd never read it anyway. Basically, "My Sister's Keeper" is about a family with three kids - I forget their real names, so I'm giving them fake ones: Token Boy Child, Leukemia, and Spare Parts. Mom and Dad find out about Leukemia's unfortunate diagnosis when she's just two, so they decide to have another baby - not to replace Leukemia when she inevitably bites it, but to provide Leukemia with spare parts for organ transplants. Spare Parts gets tired of being held back by her sister's needs - and in turn, Leukemia gets tired of holding her sister back; Spare Parts isn't allowed to go to overnight camp and is being forced to quit playing her favorite sport because Leukemia needs a new kidney. Spare Parts goes to a lawyer in an attempt to get medical emancipation from her parents. She winds up winning it, but dies in a car crash. Mom pulls the plug immediately, Leukemia gets a new kidney, and - even better - Leukemia is magically cured of her illness altogether. Also, there was a stupid subplot about the lawyer and social worker falling in love. The mother character annoyed me the most here; she didn't love her daughters equally, and it showed. It really showed. She loved Leukemia the way you love a child. She loved Spare Parts the way you love that child's trust fund or college savings. She played favorites and made no attempt to hide it. This whole book infuriated me - the very idea of having another kid just so your sick child can have her own personal organ bank sickens me. It really does. You're supposed to have a child because you will love that child, not to fill the needs of another child.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    **If you're planning on reading this book, don't read my review. I give away the horribly disappointing ending. On second thought, don't read this book, read my review.** I know several people who have read this book, so I decided to give it a go. I was immediately intrigued by the subject of the book. The Fitzgerald family has one daughter, Kate, dying of kidney failure. The kidney failure is a result of her weary body's 14 year battle with a rare form of leukemia. Their other daughter, Anna, is **If you're planning on reading this book, don't read my review. I give away the horribly disappointing ending. On second thought, don't read this book, read my review.** I know several people who have read this book, so I decided to give it a go. I was immediately intrigued by the subject of the book. The Fitzgerald family has one daughter, Kate, dying of kidney failure. The kidney failure is a result of her weary body's 14 year battle with a rare form of leukemia. Their other daughter, Anna, is a perfect donor match to Kate. The fact that Anna is a perfect match is no surprise considering Anna was conceived with Kate in mind. Anna was no accident; doctors specifically chose the embryo that would be a perfect genetic match for Kate's needs. Now thirteen years later, and several procedures later, Anna is refusing to donate a kidney. She seeks the legal help of Campbell Alexander, and together they petition the court for Anna's medical emancipation from her parents. Anna's argument is compelling. Simply, she argues "it never stops." When Anna was born they gave her cord blood to Kate. Later Anna gave lymphocytes, then bone marrow, then granulocytes, then peripheral blood stem cells. And now she is expected to give a kidney. Anna feels like she only exists to perpetuate Kate's existence. At this point doctors don't even believe Kate would survive a kidney transplant, but her parents still want the procedure done. This is a fascinating plot, since there are no clear cut right/wrong answers. How do you weight the lives of these two young girls? The author came up with a brilliant grey pool of possibilities. But the book sank. While the writing is exceptional in small burst, it's most often barely digestible and often painful. The story is told from each characters' point of view, and this leads to a lot of flashbacks and unnecessary digressions. The flashbacks of the mother, Sara, are necessary as she tells the history of Kate's illness. But were also given a side plot between Campbell and Julia, Anna's guardian ad litem. And I promise that the author's writing takes a sudden dive for the 'painful' end of the spectrum when Julia is speaking. I was bored with the lame history of the high school romance between Campbell and Julia. They had a sudden breakup, and now 15 years later they still secretly pine for one another - blah. Let me first say that if my high school sweetheart broke my heart and I still haven't gotten over it FIFTEEN YEARS LATER, slap the shit out me! The plot is stupid: Julia was the poor girl that ended up in a rich school her oh-so-loving parents desperately got her into. She's the rebel with pink hair and no friends. Campbell is drawn to her because apparently no other girl in his rich kid school thought to dye their hair. Apparently rich kids don't do such crazy things. What was even worse was the dialogue between Julia and Campbell or Julia and her sister. A lot of horrible one-liners; just awful dialogue in general. I blame Picoult's editor. Why wasn't she told to cut all this crap out? The story when told through Jesse, the 18-year-old delinquent brother of Anna and Kate, is also generally ridiculous. We're given more cheesy dialogue and digressions that add very little to the main plot. Picoult could've easily cut out about 200 pages and had a much better story. Although the stories of Jesse, Campbell, and Julia are irritating, nothing is more infuriating than how the author ties up the story in the end. She creates this wonderful dilemma but (and here's where I get nasty) doesn't have the talent to pull it off. Instead of wading around in the murkiness of deciding between the possibility of saving one life (if only for a short while) and respecting the life and decisions of another, Picoult takes the easy way out. When on the stand, Anna now explains that she not only started the petition for personal or selfish reasons, but because Kate secretly asked her too. While this might be a very probable scenario in real life - a chronically ill patient simply wanting it to all end - I was interested in seeing where Picoult could take us without this shortcut. The starting topic no longer becomes such a controversy when the recipient doesn't want what the donor is offering. That's right, we learn that Anna was willing to donate her kidney until Kate told her not to. (Can you see the satin bow coming out, about to be neatly tied around all of this?) In the end, Anna is granted medical emancipation from her parents. Even still, Anna considers giving her kidney to Kate. On one hand she doesn't want to lose her sister, but another part of her realizes her life may be better once Kate is dead. But we never learn what Anna decides in the end, because the author commits the ultimate cop out. She kills Anna off. Anna gets into a horrible car accident where she's conveniently made brain dead, but still physically alive so her organs can be harvested. That's right! Kate gets her kidney after all and lives! This ending was complete bullshit. The ethical and moral questions that set this book up were abandoned in the end. In the end, no tough decisions needed to be made. Eight years later, Kate is alive and well. Her parents, although deeply effected by Anna's death, have managed to pull themselves back together. We're told that Brian, the father, had a drinking problem for a while after Anna's death, but not to worry - he clawed his way back to the family. Good for him. And Jesse the badass teenager who made moonshine in his room, dropped LSD, and who, oh by the way, was an ARSONIST, is now a decorated police officer. How nice; glad that whole setting elementary schools on fire stage passed for him. I felt that throughout the book the author was making a case for Anna and how invisible she felt in her own family. Anna desperately wanted to be in charge of her own life. Anna wanted to be seen as an individual, not Kate's lifeline. Instead of Kate always being giving a chance, Anna wanted a chance to become her own person. In the end, her creator, her author, didn't even care enough to find out what that might mean.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    As I said before: I'm still reading this book but I'm not sure why. My mom lent me the book and she loved it, everyone tells me they loved it and I'm sort of hating it while I read. I just want to finish it and move on. Maybe I'll change my tune when it's over. Well... I hate it less, but I'm still not in love with it. I think I know the problem, though. It's Jodi Picoult. My mom loves her, my sister loves her, everyone I know loves her and I can't stand her. She just writes in this odd way that As I said before: I'm still reading this book but I'm not sure why. My mom lent me the book and she loved it, everyone tells me they loved it and I'm sort of hating it while I read. I just want to finish it and move on. Maybe I'll change my tune when it's over. Well... I hate it less, but I'm still not in love with it. I think I know the problem, though. It's Jodi Picoult. My mom loves her, my sister loves her, everyone I know loves her and I can't stand her. She just writes in this odd way that gets on my nerves. What drove me nuts reading this one was the way that every chapter, almost every paragraph either ended with some sort of cliché or some profound statement that was supposed to be so meaningful. She made not so subtle comparisons to the stars and the lonely people on earth, to a fire and a disease, a firefighter and a mother who wants to save her dying daughter. Gag. I couldn't take it. But I know it's just me and that other people are going to love this story. I thought I knew how it was going to end but when it ended differently that I expected, my thought was "Oh yeah, I should have figured that one out. Much sappier than my prediction." It's terrible, my Picoult-aversion. I have the same feelings toward Alice Hoffman and Anita Shreve. I once found an Anita Shreve book in the basement of the house I moved into, crammed under the oil tank. Never one to pass up a book, I gave it a read, got two chapters in and wanted to throw it back under the oil tank myself. I think these authors try too hard and that's what irritates me. But don't let me stop you. Go ahead, swallow your sentimental nausea, put on your cliché repellant and I'm sure you'll enjoy the story of a family in turmoil, told in the fashion I usually enjoy where each chapter is from a different character's perspective. Just don't say I didn't warn you.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lobeck

    this book is a shameless and unskillful manipulation of human emotions. i felt dirty when i was done with it. the story is on par with cheap natural disaster movies like deep impact that are formulated to tug at your heartstrings in very predictable ways. the author painfully over uses the dramatic blackout technique where she writes a line that's trying too hard to be clever or profound and then fades to black - aka, leaves extra space before the next paragraph or ends a chapter - sometimes wit this book is a shameless and unskillful manipulation of human emotions. i felt dirty when i was done with it. the story is on par with cheap natural disaster movies like deep impact that are formulated to tug at your heartstrings in very predictable ways. the author painfully over uses the dramatic blackout technique where she writes a line that's trying too hard to be clever or profound and then fades to black - aka, leaves extra space before the next paragraph or ends a chapter - sometimes with no time break between one sentence and the next. such a cheap trick - does this impress anyone any more? the author writes the entire novel as a cliff hanger - another piece of shameless manipulation that i despise - with the whole novel spanning no more than a few days. she builds up plot points that don't deliver; when she finally reveals characters' motivations, they end up being pretty lame justifications for their actions. the sideline love story was completely predictable - old sweathearts with a bad breakup who are suddenly thrown into a situation together. woman resists, man persists, woman gives in to romantic evenings and sex, illustrating once again that women don't really know what they want and no doesn't really mean no and if you push hard enough you can have your way with any woman. needless to say, i don't recommend this book.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Bex

    This was a horrible read. Premise: Great. Should be really interesting. Execution: Terrible. Ending: Basically the worst ending I've ever read in anything. Ever. Wish: I wish someone had spoken up after the first read and called out the author on some of the really bad plot devices and decisions in this book. Just like someone should have stopped George Lucas before Episodes 1-3. This could have been good- really good. But it just wasn't.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sammy

    This book was stunning. In writing, in style, in plot, in character! It truly is one of those books that you really can't stop reading. Especially for me, because in a way it took me back to my Lurlene McDaniel days. Did anyone ever read her? She was always writing books about different teenagers and young children with terminal illnesses. I was addicted to those books. So it was no surprise when the young reader in me sort of jumped up when I saw a friend of mine reading this book and she descr This book was stunning. In writing, in style, in plot, in character! It truly is one of those books that you really can't stop reading. Especially for me, because in a way it took me back to my Lurlene McDaniel days. Did anyone ever read her? She was always writing books about different teenagers and young children with terminal illnesses. I was addicted to those books. So it was no surprise when the young reader in me sort of jumped up when I saw a friend of mine reading this book and she described it to me. Boy was it a book well chosen. Picoult writes from the views of a few different key characters, allowing the reader to get an extremely well-rounded look at the story. At first the jumping from character to character is a little jarring and you have to keep reminding yourself that it's a new character, but eventually you get into the vibe of the book and wouldn't have it written any other way. The one thing Picoult does perfectly is make you torn. You really don't know who to support in a case like this. At times you find yourself leaning towards Anna, and other times wanting desperately to shout your support for Sara, the poor mother in this situation. With the readers information of other characters points of views and knowledge, the whole case is a lot more difficult to have a desired verdict towards. In the end a decision is made, a decision that, while reading the book, I was constantly wondering what Picoult was going to do, because either way one fully supported side was going to lose. But the way she really ends the book puts results to rest in a solid, yet emotionally unsatisfying ending. The ending it by no means bad, quite the contrary it was beautiful and settling, but at the same time you don't know whether to be relieved that there was an extremely closed ending without debate, or to cry. I won't tell you why, and I may have said too much already. But this book is just incredible and I highly advise you try to read it as soon as possible.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Penny

    Anyone who has a kid has probably, at one point or another, battled with them at bedtime. That's what I do, every night. There is much yelling, crying, begging and pleading. It's horrible. Kid #3 is out like a light, so she's not part of the problem. Kid #2 puts up a good fight, whining and tantrum throwing, but eventually she succumbs to her sleepiness. Kid #1, however... well, she's another story altogether. At night, she's afraid of everything and feels that if she sleeps something will get he Anyone who has a kid has probably, at one point or another, battled with them at bedtime. That's what I do, every night. There is much yelling, crying, begging and pleading. It's horrible. Kid #3 is out like a light, so she's not part of the problem. Kid #2 puts up a good fight, whining and tantrum throwing, but eventually she succumbs to her sleepiness. Kid #1, however... well, she's another story altogether. At night, she's afraid of everything and feels that if she sleeps something will get her. But she's not invincible, she has to sleep sometime. So after being assured that she's safe, she'll lay down and relax--this can only happen in the master bedroom, because in her mind the master bedroom is safe from everything. Once she's been lulled into blissful unconsciousness either me or my husband will move her to her room. Typically this goes off without a hitch. But every once in a great while she wakes up and totally freaks out, because she realizes she was tricked. By her own parents, no less. She feels betrayed. She doesn't believe us when we swear that we won't move her again (because we will and she knows it). And so, because of her her general mistrust, her fear of everything, not to mention all the sobbing, she is awake for another couple of hours, at least. The whole situation is very dramatic and it totally sucks. How does this relate to My Sister's Keeper? It doesn't--not exactly but I do have a point. Let me explain. I spent years avoiding Jody Picoult's books like the plague. They frightened me. I don't know why. Perhaps it's the fact that every woman over thirty can't stop raving about Jody Picoult books, which means they're probably not my 'cuppa tea'. It may even have something to do with the fact that the woman has the ability to crank these insanely thick books out like she's some sort of writing machine from hell. I don't know, it just doesn't seem natural. Besides, no author is capable of writing so fast. At least, no good author can do such a thing, amirite? But finally, after being assured that Jody is actually quite talented, that her books are intriguing and worthwhile, I relented and picked up Nineteen Minutes. And you know what? It wasn't horrible. Actually, I kind of liked it. Alright, I admit it--I liked it a lot. It wasn't the best book ever, but it was the sort of book that makes you think, stays with you after you're finished reading it. *shrugs* I happen to like that sort of thing. So I immediately picked up My Sister's Keeper. And I liked it too. In fact, I was only half way through the book when I was positive I'd be giving it four stars. Sure the sub-plot about the lawyer and the child advocate falling in love was incredibly stupid, but could I blame Jody for throwing it in? No. I'm sure her target audience expects that sort of thing to be in every book they ever read. So I was willing to forgive it. I even forgave all the cheesy cliches. Because sometimes I'm able to ignore stupid subplots, ridiculous cliches, irritating characters (and by irritating I mean 'so monstrous they deserve to die a horribly drawn-out and painful death'. Yes, I'm talking about the mother in this book), formulaic--that's a word, right?--writing and even the lack of good editing when a story has peaked my interest. It happened when I was reading Twilight and it happened while I was reading this book. Besides, I'd already come to the conclusion that I'd like this book because I liked Nineteen Minutes. I even had visions of myself adding Jodi Picoult to my list of favorite authors, adding the whole of Jodi Picoult's published works to my TBR list, happily reading said books on the beach over summer break--it was going to be so awesome! But then, when I was nearly finished with this book, Jodi Picoult went and ruined everything. EVERYTHING! I don't even have the desire to finish this book. I feel manipulated, betrayed, lied to, cheated, and totally violated! I also feel incredibly stupid for thinking that Jodi Picoult was a good writer. Because she's not. She totally sucks and I hate her. So. Even though I've wasted hours of my life reading, and thinking about, Jodi Picoult novels, it hasn't been all bad. I've learned two things from this whole experience. First, I should trust my initial instincts when it comes to books. Second, I'm an a-hole for lying to my kid. It's no wonder she doesn't trust me, and she'll probably need years of therapy because of it. I wouldn't blame her if she threw me in a really bad nursing home someday. I gave this book two stars because it isn't horrible until the end. That's when Picoult whips out the most manipulative, unnecessary twist, and thus ruins the whole experience. Now let us never speak of this again.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Nola Redd

    I hate novels where parenting is questioned, simply because I too often find myself thinking, “Well I would never do THAT.” I then have to do the whole knock-on-wood routine and hope that I didn’t just invite divine retribution for being too judgmental. So it was with Jodi Picoult’s novel My Sister’s Keeper. After reading the summary of the novel, I knew that I would never make the choices that the parents shown did. After reading the novel, I found myself questioning what I might really do if I hate novels where parenting is questioned, simply because I too often find myself thinking, “Well I would never do THAT.” I then have to do the whole knock-on-wood routine and hope that I didn’t just invite divine retribution for being too judgmental. So it was with Jodi Picoult’s novel My Sister’s Keeper. After reading the summary of the novel, I knew that I would never make the choices that the parents shown did. After reading the novel, I found myself questioning what I might really do if my child was facing death. In case you missed the summary, My Sister’s Keeper is the story of Anna, a thirteen year old girl genetically conceived to be a match for her leukemia-positive sister. Within minutes of her birth, she was a donor for Kate, sharing her cord blood to save her sister’s life. By the time she is thirteen, when the novel takes place, she has been in the hospital almost as much as Kate, donating things such as blood and bone marrow. After being asked to donate a kidney, she seeks legal emancipation from her parents. And so the story begins. One of the things that bugged me was the chapter-by-chapter switch of the point of view. It was very well handled and, once I got past the irritation stage, I had to admit that it helped the story along. And so we skip through the minds of Anna, her lawyer, her court-appointed guardian ad litem, her brother, her father, and her mother – in short, everyone close to Anna except her sister. Each of these perspectives is given in the present, with the notable exception of her mother. Instead, we trace the mother’s path of learning that her daughter has leukemia, and what decisions led her (and Anna) to the current moment. This, too, was initially annoying, but proved well-chosen; I’m not sure the same impact would have been made if we simply had the mom looking back. It would have been far easier to judge her at that point than it was to see her experiencing her pain. In fact, it was from Sara’s perspective that I learned the most, and that I questioned myself. If my young daughter, the light of my life, was threatened with death, how far would I go to save her? I don’t think that I honestly would have even thought up the idea of conceiving a child specifically for that purpose, but what do you do once the idea has been planted? Furthermore, it is clear that Sara loves and cherishes Anna, even as she worries incessantly over Katie. True, she neglects her, but she also neglects her son, who had been born prior to the diagnosis, turning most of her attention to her sick child. And though this also made me pass judgement, it also made me wonder – would I be able to balance my attention on all my children if one were struggling through a life-long illness? How easy would it be to make small decisions that hurt the others to save the one? In short, I hated this well-written, well-developed, well-plotted book because it made me think. The moral and religious side of me rejects the notion of a test-tube baby conceived for a specific purpose, but the mother in me wonders. If my child were starving, how easy would it be to remain true to my moral perspectives and not steal (assuming, of course, the government weren’t around to save me)? If someone threatened my child, how far would I go to protect them? In short, when it comes down to crunch time, how true would I stay? To fall asleep, I have to assure myself that I would, of course, be perfect in all things. And then knock soundly on the nearest wood, and pray I never have to find out.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Richard Derus

    Rating: fifteen one-thousandths of a single star (out of five; p44) 2018 UPDATE Anyone who thinks that this idea of growing a new kid for replacement parts is a good idea should read Altered Carbon or watch the glossy, gritty Netflix show. Many are the yodels of praise for this horrifying book. The details of the main character's use as a farm animal for a more-favored older sibling are too grisly to recount without vomiting on my keyboard. People die. Even when we don't want them to, and even when Rating: fifteen one-thousandths of a single star (out of five; p44) 2018 UPDATE Anyone who thinks that this idea of growing a new kid for replacement parts is a good idea should read Altered Carbon or watch the glossy, gritty Netflix show. Many are the yodels of praise for this horrifying book. The details of the main character's use as a farm animal for a more-favored older sibling are too grisly to recount without vomiting on my keyboard. People die. Even when we don't want them to, and even when it hurts for them to, and even when we've given them life. It's happened to me. I know it hurts, but the ghastly vile disgusting nauseating practice of having a child *specifically* to save another child...! Anyone who does that should be jailed. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rita

    Spoiler Alert. This review contains spoilers. I hated this book so much. I only kept reading it because I had to find out why Campbell, the lawyer, had a service dog, since he kept that such a secret. I hated the clichés (Julia chose just that moment to crash through the door… Anna chose that precise moment to speak up… Rita chose this moment to gag on bad writing…). I hated the overwrought melodrama. Everything was just so saturated with heavy-handed tear-jerking prose that the book was soggy and Spoiler Alert. This review contains spoilers. I hated this book so much. I only kept reading it because I had to find out why Campbell, the lawyer, had a service dog, since he kept that such a secret. I hated the clichés (Julia chose just that moment to crash through the door… Anna chose that precise moment to speak up… Rita chose this moment to gag on bad writing…). I hated the overwrought melodrama. Everything was just so saturated with heavy-handed tear-jerking prose that the book was soggy and just about dripping. About halfway through the book, I started skimming it, looking for dialogue relevant to the plot. Brian’s metaphors about fire and Sara’s reminiscing about the kids’ childhoods and Campbell’s backflashes about Julia and Julia being pathetic in every possible way and Anna’s cluelessness just got so very dull. If I was ever to find out why Campbell had that dog, then I needed to get through the material faster. Putting the book down to groan out loud every few paragraphs was taking too long. The characters were two-dimensional and irritating. They really were just like paper dolls, given name tags, dressed up in stereotypes and given lines to say (and melodramatic thoughts to spill out). It was like, This is the mom and she’s a big martyr who puts her children first all the time… she’s a GOOD mother, she just got blinded by trying to be too good, so she seems kind of bad now. But we’ll be on her side in the end because of her deep insight. Waggle mom paper doll and have her blah, blah, blah and then Over here is the Big Bad Lawyer doll… ooooh, he’s a ruthless go-getter with a hazy past, but he’ll have some secrets to pull out at the end so we’ll realize he’s a decent, stand up guy after all. Waggle lawyer paper doll and have him blah blah blah, and so on. The plot was all right through all of that until the big Law and Order courtroom twist at the end. That was just a convenient trick to get out of actually trying to find a solution for such a dilemma. She worked it up to such a point that there was no way out that would sit well with an audience, there was no good way to wrap it up, so she pulled a rabbit out of a hat. Then she went a step further and did something that I guess some might find bold, but it just made me shout a stream of obscenities and then made me thankful that I had just skimmed the second half of the book and didn’t really invest in it at all. Otherwise, I would have been furious with such an ending. This is the second Jodi Picoult book I’ve tried to read. I didn’t like the other one either (Vanishing Acts), so I guess I won’t be reading anything else by this author.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Mischenko

    This book is featured on this week's Throwback Thursday @ https://readrantrockandroll.com/2017/... Leave it to Jodi Picoult to captivate me from cover to cover. I read this in 2005 and remember that I couldn't put this down until the final shocking end. Sara's daughter Kate is sick. She has leukemia and Sara will do whatever it takes to keep her alive. When Anna is born, she quickly becomes her sister Kate's savior, but as time goes on, Anna wants a life of her own. "If you have a sister and she di This book is featured on this week's Throwback Thursday @ https://readrantrockandroll.com/2017/... Leave it to Jodi Picoult to captivate me from cover to cover. I read this in 2005 and remember that I couldn't put this down until the final shocking end. Sara's daughter Kate is sick. She has leukemia and Sara will do whatever it takes to keep her alive. When Anna is born, she quickly becomes her sister Kate's savior, but as time goes on, Anna wants a life of her own. "If you have a sister and she dies, do you stop saying you have one? Or are you always a sister, even when the other half of the equation is gone?...I didn't come to see her because it would make me feel better. I came because without her, it's hard to remember who I am."  A life is at stake and family relationships spin out of control when Anna files a lawsuit against her parents to be removed from the situation. Who is it that's right when not one of them is sure of their own decisions on this controversial matter?  I couldn't put the book down. The book is written with multiple character viewpoints and the story unfolds quickly. Picoult has the capability of twisting a story so far that you can never figure out what's ahead or how it'll end.  I love the way she writes and she's one of my favorite authors. This is just one of my favorite books by her.  My rating for this book is 5*****

  12. 4 out of 5

    Vessey

    SPOILERS "There are some things we do because we convince ourselves it would be better for everyone involved. We tell ourselves that it's the right thing to do, the altruistic thing to do. It's far easier than telling ourselves the truth." When Sara Fitzgerald discovers that her daughter Kate suffers from leukemia, she decides that she will fight for her child’s life at all cost. Even if that cost is someone else’s life. And this is how Anna is born. The girl who has never belonged to herself, w SPOILERS "There are some things we do because we convince ourselves it would be better for everyone involved. We tell ourselves that it's the right thing to do, the altruistic thing to do. It's far easier than telling ourselves the truth." When Sara Fitzgerald discovers that her daughter Kate suffers from leukemia, she decides that she will fight for her child’s life at all cost. Even if that cost is someone else’s life. And this is how Anna is born. The girl who has never belonged to herself, whose light has been smothered before having even touched the surface of her existence. "But ever since then, we've been too busy looking over our shoulders to run headlong into growing up. You know how most little kids think they're like cartoon characters - if an anvil drops on their heads they can peel themselves off the sidewalk and keep going? Well, I never once believed that. How could I, when we practically set a place for Death at the dinner table?" I believe it is everyone’s duty and right to help others. I believe it is everyone’s duty and right to help themselves. As a former lawyer, Sara sometimes doubts her decision to give up her career in the name of the family. She struggles with it. She does not have doubts whatsoever where her two daughters are concerned and about the role each of them needs to play in the other’s life. But when doubts go away, do we stop fighting? Sara keeps struggling. Even though she is confident in her choice. Does pain go away along with doubts? Not always. Sometimes it is exactly when we know that we are right that the pain is the strongest. When Anna files a lawsuit against her parents, wanting a medical emancipation, she has no doubt that her daughter is in the wrong, that she wants to escape her responsibility to keep the family together by keeping her sister alive. When we cannot save those we are responsible for, do we have the right to bestow this responsibility on someone else and expect them to act as we would? Even Anna herself cannot give us the response. She is not confident in her choices, because, really, she is faced with an impossible situation. "If you have a sister and she dies, do you stop saying you have one? Or are you always a sister, even when the other half of the equation is gone?...I didn't come to see her because it would make me feel better. I came because without her, it's hard to remember who I am." She does not accept being her sister’s guardian and not having a life of her own, she does not accept being independent and thus dooming her sister to death. Sometimes there is no right choice, there is not a happy ending, there are no heroes and villains. Only doubts. There is no right path for Anna. No matter what she chooses, she cannot live with it, she cannot be happy, she cannot forgive herself. Dying physically is only one form of dying. Some of us die constantly, through the choices we –and others - get or don’t get to make. Through the many ifs and maybes and missed or wrongly chosen opportunities we face. Anna’s life is not her own, regardless of what choice she makes. For her it is over before having even begun. I know next to nothing about genetic engineering, but Anna’s story shows me that there is only so much we have the right to ask of another person. There is only so much we have the right to create. I do believe in the noble motives of Sara Fitzgerald, but I do not believe in the validity of her choice. She decides to create a child with the intent to sacrifice it for the other one’s sake. All her love and care for Anna do not make up for that. Anna does not know where her place is, she feels like there isn’t really a place for her. And the universe seems to agree with her. She never gets to make the choice she so dreads of. At the time she finally receives her much craved freedom, she leaves this world. The child that never had to exist stops existing. There is no more struggle, no more dilemmas. It is over. "There are orphans and widows, but there is no word for the parent who loses a child. It turns out that after all these years I have spent anticipating this, I am completely at loss. Like coloring the sky in with a crayon; there is no language for grief this big. I wait for a change. And then I feel it, as her heart stops beating beneath my palm - that tiny loss of rhythm, that hollow calm, that utter loss." Through what Kate receives from her body after Anna is gone, a medical miracle happens and she seems to have gotten recovered from her disease. There are no more relapses. Doctors cannot explain it, but Kate believes that it is because Anna’s death makes up for her own. But what life will Kate have from now on? Will she be able to handle the cost at which she has it? When I start to feel this way I go into the bathroom and I lift up my shirt and touch the white lines of my scar. I remember how, at first, I thought the stitches seemed to spell out her name. I think about her kidney working inside me and her blood running through my veins. I take her with me, wherever I go. When we offer somebody a gift, especially the gift of life, we do not always realize or want to realize what we offer them along with it. Do I believe that it was better for Anna to die than to have to live dealing with the consequences of how she was brought to this world? No. Do I believe she should have been born at all? The answer again is no. Kate keeps on living, but with feeling that she cheated death, that she lives somebody else’s life, bearing within herself the same feeling of wrongness her sister struggles with while alive. I do not believe that our survival and the one of those we love is worth all cost. I do not believe in Sara’s choice. After all is said and done, she still ends up with a dead child and those she is left with are scarred for life. But I do not blame her for it. I understand her and I feel for her. I think that it is understandable why someone in her situation cannot see things the way I describe them. It is understandable why she cannot fathom the consequences and the price that comes with her choices. "It is the things you cannot see coming that are strong enough to kill you." We are all told all the time how important it is to do the right thing. Sometimes the right thing is too much to ask for. Often right and wrong are not even part of the equation. In a battle in which there are no winners, where there is no right and wrong, where all you can count on are your instincts, hoping that they are there for a reason, that they mean something, that in the end they are worth more than any moral that chains you when you are desperately trying to break free and take a step, any step that may turn the wheel, break the glass, chase away the shadow, bring back the pulse in your body, you know better than to hope that you will keep your hands clean. All you have is the hope that when the battle is over, you will have the strength to pick up the bodies and bury them. Read count: 1

  13. 5 out of 5

    K.D. Absolutely

    My first book written by Jodi Picoult (born 1966) and I had mixed feelings about it. I don't know if I hate or love it so I just rate this with 2 stars that in Goodreads means, It's okay. I have a friend in the office who is a solid Jodi Picoult fan. She encouraged me to read this a couple of years back as my intro to Picoult's world. I took the book home, read the first 10 pages, closed it and gave the book back to her the following morning. My reason? I did not like the 13-y/o Anna suing her pa My first book written by Jodi Picoult (born 1966) and I had mixed feelings about it. I don't know if I hate or love it so I just rate this with 2 stars that in Goodreads means, It's okay. I have a friend in the office who is a solid Jodi Picoult fan. She encouraged me to read this a couple of years back as my intro to Picoult's world. I took the book home, read the first 10 pages, closed it and gave the book back to her the following morning. My reason? I did not like the 13-y/o Anna suing her parents for emancipation. Suing one's parents is very un-Filipino, IMHO and I don't think it will happen in the Philippines because Filipinos are reared to be God-fearing and God commands us to respect our parents so I think that situation is unrealistic. It is something I can't relate with. However, the Filipinos group here in Goodreads chose this book last month as our bestseller read. I tried reading it within the schedule but again, I got stuck in the first few pages. I still could not make me accept that suing part but I went on reading but when I encountered that backstory about Anna's conception just to be the perfect donor for her older sister Kate, I again back off as it is again another unrealistic point: couples decide to have children because they love each other and children are proof of that love. Children are not created to serve as organ donors unless we are talking here of Kazuo Ishiguro's mileau in his Never Let Me Go. Thank God for the long weekend I had the time to finish some of my stalled books in my currently-reading folder. This one included. I am glad I finished the book. It's still worth the time. It is a nicely written book. Multiple narrators and POVs. Beautiful metaphors. Memorable quotes. Nice play of words. Any novel about family is on top of my list. However, the characters and the situations they get themselves into felt too contrived just for the sake of getting the lachrymal glands of the readers working hard and probably working overtime. I admire Picoult's efforts to make her story interesting and educational by throwing lots of details regarding leukemia, APL, fire-fighting, kidney transplant, bone marrow extract, etc. "A" for the efforts but I guess the plot is overwritten to the extent of being too manipulative for my taste. This is the reason why I do not watch TV teleseryes unless when my mom is in town and I would like to bond with her by us watching her soap operas on the telly. But contrary to most of my friends' reviews here in Goodreads, I loved the ending in the book. I think it is the right conclusion as a reminder to parents not to take their children for granted. Well, it is quite different in the movie adaptation for obvious reason: viewers normally want to have a happier ending. Maybe the director of the movie was on Sarah's side since mothers normally have the purse where the money to pay for the movie tickets come from. I definitely have no regrets reading this book. I just will not read another Picoult again. For me, reading Picoult is like bungee jumping. Once is enough.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Elyse

    I'm guessing everyone has read this book - but maybe not??? When I saw another GR's post she just read it... and it was one of the most disturbing books she ever read.., I can relate. WAY before this movie came out...(with its different ending)..... I couldn't move at one point while reading. I was on my way to the gym that early morning...but I was just a wreck----crying just too hard at the house alone...( not knowing anyone who had read this book at the time).., I didn't get off the 'floor' .. I'm guessing everyone has read this book - but maybe not??? When I saw another GR's post she just read it... and it was one of the most disturbing books she ever read.., I can relate. WAY before this movie came out...(with its different ending)..... I couldn't move at one point while reading. I was on my way to the gym that early morning...but I was just a wreck----crying just too hard at the house alone...( not knowing anyone who had read this book at the time).., I didn't get off the 'floor' .... I was in shock. **For years later... This became one of the most talked about books... with valuable discussions

  15. 4 out of 5

    Deanna

    I loved this book. Decided to re-read it recently as I happened to catch part of the movie on TV the other day. This is Jodi Picoult at her finest. I have enjoyed all of her books but this one is at the top. When I first read it in 2005 I was practically forcing people to read it. It gained more popularity when the movie came out but I was a fan from the moment I opened the book and read the first page. Jodi Picoult has written about many controversial subjects and this one focuses on genetic eng I loved this book. Decided to re-read it recently as I happened to catch part of the movie on TV the other day. This is Jodi Picoult at her finest. I have enjoyed all of her books but this one is at the top. When I first read it in 2005 I was practically forcing people to read it. It gained more popularity when the movie came out but I was a fan from the moment I opened the book and read the first page. Jodi Picoult has written about many controversial subjects and this one focuses on genetic engineering. Kate Fitzgerald has a rare form of leukemia. Her parents conceived her sister, Anna as a donor match for procedures that Kate required. At age 13, Anna decides to hire a lawyer so she can sue her parents basically for rights to her own body. I found this book to be so engrossing that I read it in two sittings. I would have finished in one if I hadn't had to go to work. It is hard not to be sympathetic to everyone in the book. It raises so many questions and all these years later I am still thinking of the possible answers. What lengths would you go to to save a life? Especially the life of a child? Jodi Picoult handled issues sensitively and wrote a thoughtful, moving story that keeps you interested from start to finish. This is one of those books that you cannot put down. I will always hold this book close to my heart and recommend highly.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sharon

    it would be impossible for me to overstate how much i hated this book. I hated, hated, hated this book. I guessed the end 5 pages into it, but read it through anyway (why?)(probably because everyone else in nursing school was reading it and wanted to tell me how good it was. Never trust nurses). Interesting for the medical information, and if it convinced one person to become an organ donor it served its purpose in the world, but man, was it hard to read. It was trite and simplistic and written it would be impossible for me to overstate how much i hated this book. I hated, hated, hated this book. I guessed the end 5 pages into it, but read it through anyway (why?)(probably because everyone else in nursing school was reading it and wanted to tell me how good it was. Never trust nurses). Interesting for the medical information, and if it convinced one person to become an organ donor it served its purpose in the world, but man, was it hard to read. It was trite and simplistic and written unsuccessfully from the viewpoints of many different people, all of whom spoke with exactly the same voice(extremely flimsy characterization). I didn't care about any of them and sort of welcomed and even hoped for their deaths. And the subplot with the two lawyers made me want to swallow the barrel of a shotgun. If you are 34 years old and can't get past what someone did to you in high school, you are NOT MATURE ENOUGH to be a lawyer and should probably just kill yourself now. I get the feeling that this woman found a grad school paper about organ donation and wrote a novel around it in a week. Maybe less. I hated this book. Negative stars.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Phyllis Eisenstadt

    AGAINST HER WILL If Jodi Picoult's intent was to shock readers and make them cringe, she has succeeded beyond belief. As the mother of an extremely ill child, she was desperate to find a way to keep her alive. The premise was to conceive a sibling that could be a resident "body parts donor" for her older sister. I was incensed by the painful, invasive procedures she had doctors inflict upon the younger sibling. Although, as a mother, I fully understand how imperative it was to forge ahead and do AGAINST HER WILL If Jodi Picoult's intent was to shock readers and make them cringe, she has succeeded beyond belief. As the mother of an extremely ill child, she was desperate to find a way to keep her alive. The premise was to conceive a sibling that could be a resident "body parts donor" for her older sister. I was incensed by the painful, invasive procedures she had doctors inflict upon the younger sibling. Although, as a mother, I fully understand how imperative it was to forge ahead and do whatever was necessary to save her older daughter; I, too, would do everything...everything, that is, short of creating an innocent child to be a living body parts donor. I found myself angry with the mother, and my anger eventually transferred to the author. It wasn't until an author/friend of mind reminded me that when a novelist evokes such strong emotions, it is exactly what s/he had intended. So, although I find the premise nightmarish and cringe-worthy, I will not "kill the messenger," after all; instead, I applaud Picoult's superb writing style. Phyllis Eisenstadt

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mitabird

    My Sister's Keeper was one of the most heart wrenching stories I've ever read. Anna's sister, Kate, is dying from a rare form of leukemia. She was conceived as a genetic match to help save her sister's life. It was supposed to be a one-time deal, but over the course of her 13 years, Anna has donated multiple times. Her sister is in need of a kidney and Anna's decided she's had enough of being told how to use her body. She decides to sue her parents for medical emancipation and refuses to give up My Sister's Keeper was one of the most heart wrenching stories I've ever read. Anna's sister, Kate, is dying from a rare form of leukemia. She was conceived as a genetic match to help save her sister's life. It was supposed to be a one-time deal, but over the course of her 13 years, Anna has donated multiple times. Her sister is in need of a kidney and Anna's decided she's had enough of being told how to use her body. She decides to sue her parents for medical emancipation and refuses to give up her kidney. She knows the possible consequences of her actions, but she wants to be the one to make the choice, not her parents. What follows is a harrowing tale told in the view of six people affected by Anna's decision. I really can't say too much else without giving anything away, but this is a must read, albeit an emotional one.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Wendy Darling

    For readers who don't mind Message Books in which plot points and characters are jerked around for ultimate emotional manipulation.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca McNutt

    As good a book as it was a film, if not better, My Sister's Keeper is a compelling novel that draws dysfunctional characters together as a feud between them threatens to end the life of a sister with terminal cancer. I found myself disgusted by the mother, though. Her haste to overprotect one child and exploit the other one for spare parts was really cruel and disturbing, though I don't think she meant it to be. Excellent novel, and I'd definitely recommend it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Israt Zaman Disha

    How it feels to know that you have a disease and you are going to die any day? There is no guarantee of your life. Will you be prepared when death comes? Is it even possible to be prepared for death? So that one can accept it as 'I knew this was gonna happen' way? These are the questions that I ask myself sometime. One of my senior's father in university had been diagnosed with cancer. And after a month he was gone. At the same time I donated blood to a cancer patient. I talked with the patient How it feels to know that you have a disease and you are going to die any day? There is no guarantee of your life. Will you be prepared when death comes? Is it even possible to be prepared for death? So that one can accept it as 'I knew this was gonna happen' way? These are the questions that I ask myself sometime. One of my senior's father in university had been diagnosed with cancer. And after a month he was gone. At the same time I donated blood to a cancer patient. I talked with the patient quite a lot while waiting. She is fighting with cancer for a long time. From then on I have started asking myself these questions. The hardest thing I faced while reading this book is that I don’t have anyone to blame. If only I could blame anyone everything would be so much easier. I could take a side then, I could tell that the other party is wrong. But who to blame when everyone is right? Can you blame Anna? Because she doesn't want to give her sister an organ. I love my sister a lot. When I was a kid I used to cry if my mother scolded my sister and she would laugh seeing me cry. I used to give her my share of chocolate, ice cream basically everything she asked. She was once admitted to hospital to keep under observation when I was in class eight. It turned out nothing serious. I remember the day my parents took her to hospital. I cried a lot. I think if I was asked to trade place with her I would do that. If I have to give one of my organ to her I would give it to her if it benefits her. But can I really do all this if the time ever comes (which, I pray, never comes)? “If you have a sister and she dies, do you stop saying you have one? Or are you always a sister, even when the other half of the equation is gone?”  Can you blame Sara or Brian because they want one of their child to live? Because they made a designer baby to save their daughter? Because they want one of their daughters to donate an organ otherwise their other daughter is going to die? My mother had to undergo a tumor operation a few years ago. I was terrified inside when my mother was taken to the OT. It was not a operation where there is a chance for things to go wrong. It was an extremely easy case and everybody knew that. But yet I was so terrified and I don't want to see anyone of my family to go to OT ever again. When I cannot stand a simple operation of my mother how can a parent stand to see their daughter dying and not do anything? Now there's Jesse. Who doesn't want some extra attention? But Jesse was not asking extra attention. He just wanted his share of attention. Every child seeks attention. As a child Jesse did not get any. And all the frustration was gradually growing inside of him. Sara and Brian saw that. But they were occupied with their daughter who might die if they avert their eyes for a few moments. Who do I blame for Jesse's condition? No one. There were times when I was too busy with school and my mother got busy with me, taking me to school and picking me up, giving me extra attention because I was aiming higher in life and most probably I had the potential to achieve the goal. My sister took care of me at that time. Sometimes she got angry and told my parents that they are not giving attention to her. Now while I am reading this story I wonder if she still hold some grudges against us for that time. **********Some May Find Mild Spoiler Ahead************ Finally can you blame Kate because she doesn't want to live anymore? Because she is tired of living in hospitals and going through operation? Sometimes I think that If I get to know that I am dying in six moths because of some incurable disease then I would want to live my life fully rather than spending the rest of my life in hospital beds. ******** End of Spoiler Warning ************** Finally, this book took me in an emotional ride. It made me appreciate my life. It made me think a lot about those people and those families who don't have what I have. A healthy and happy life and family. “And the very act of living is a tide; at first it seems to make no difference at all, and then one day you look down and see how much pain has eroded." P.S. I got too emotional while reading this book and got carried away while writing review. That's why it's such a long review(which is not actually a review but my thoughts).

  22. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I found this book frustrating. I really liked the author's writing style - I had a hard time putting it down. But at the same tine I think the author took the easy way out with the ending and didn't give some of the characters the chance to reach their potential. ~~SPOILERS BELOW~~ * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * I found Sara really easy to dislike. I don't know if I'm the only one, but I found her to be amazingly selfish. All she cared about was keeping Kate alive, weather Kate wanted to be or not. She onl I found this book frustrating. I really liked the author's writing style - I had a hard time putting it down. But at the same tine I think the author took the easy way out with the ending and didn't give some of the characters the chance to reach their potential. ~~SPOILERS BELOW~~ * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * I found Sara really easy to dislike. I don't know if I'm the only one, but I found her to be amazingly selfish. All she cared about was keeping Kate alive, weather Kate wanted to be or not. She only used Anna as a means of keeping Kate alive. I don't think Sara ever had any real love for Anna, as sad as that is. The whole emancipation hearing would have never happened if Sara had stopped for a moment to let Kate tell her what she really wanted. I enjoyed the fact that each chapter was narrated by a different character. I even liked the different fonts for the different characters. I think doing it this way is one of the only ways that you'd be able to understand all the different viewpoints of the characters. As for the ending I think the author took the easy way out. Once again Anna is sacrificed for Kate, but this time, not by Sara, but the author. I would have liked to see Sara deal with the fact that Kate didn't want to go on as she was. As soon as the car crash happened I knew what would happen. It wasn't really a surprise at that point. I feel like Sara should have suffered with knowing that she didn't really love Anna. She only had her to help Kate and I think she should have had to face that fact. The fact that Campbell gave annoying answers to why he had Judge (his dog) drove me crazy. I don't think it was that big of a deal. The way the author went about it really annoyed me. Throughout the book Anna was the one constantly sacrificing. And in the end she made the biggest sacrifice one can make. I would have liked to see Sara sacrifice something instead. Have I mentioned I really didn't like Sara?

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    Many reviews on GR mentioned that this book has a terrible ending, maybe I should’ve seen it coming but I didn’t. The way things ended shocked me. The book was great, I kept asking myself, if I was Ana, Sarah, Kate, Brian, or even Jessie, what would I’ve done? I’m not going into the details, most of you know the story. I just want to say that I’m very disappointed that the author failed miserably after posing a great dilemma. I’m still giving it 3 stars for the first 95% of the story and only dr Many reviews on GR mentioned that this book has a terrible ending, maybe I should’ve seen it coming but I didn’t. The way things ended shocked me. The book was great, I kept asking myself, if I was Ana, Sarah, Kate, Brian, or even Jessie, what would I’ve done? I’m not going into the details, most of you know the story. I just want to say that I’m very disappointed that the author failed miserably after posing a great dilemma. I’m still giving it 3 stars for the first 95% of the story and only dropped my rating by 1 star. Even with that ridiculous end, I would still recommend this book if you’re looking for a story set in our days that will make you question yourself. I listened to the audiobook and if you’re looking for a good audio, this one won’t disappoint. The story is told from many povs and each is narrated by a different person.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    This book was incredible! Devastating though for sure! There is really no words to put how moving and engrossing this story is. You can see both sides of the debate but at the same time it is so hard to choose which is the better side compared to the ethical side and possible even realistic. I was thoroughly engrossed and had so much internal mental debates about this book. I still do not know how I feel about Sara. My quick and simple overall is just one word for this book: AMAZING!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Madeline

    The conflict alone is what makes this book fascinating - the story focuses on two sisters, Anna and Kate. The older sister, Kate, was diagnosed with leukemia when she was four. Knowing that their daughter would need blood donations, bone marrow, and possibly organ donations in the future, Kate's parents had another child whose sole purpose would be to provide a blood match for Kate. Thirteen years later, Anna gets tired of spending almost all her time in hospitals, giving bone marrow and blood t The conflict alone is what makes this book fascinating - the story focuses on two sisters, Anna and Kate. The older sister, Kate, was diagnosed with leukemia when she was four. Knowing that their daughter would need blood donations, bone marrow, and possibly organ donations in the future, Kate's parents had another child whose sole purpose would be to provide a blood match for Kate. Thirteen years later, Anna gets tired of spending almost all her time in hospitals, giving bone marrow and blood to keep her sister's cancer at bay. When Anna learns that Kate needs a kidney transplant, she sues her parents for the rights to her own body. The resulting trial, and the ending of the book, was tense and riveting. After finishing this book, I immediately went out and read two more of Picoult's books, Plain Truth and Vanishing Acts. It was then that I discovered that, like Dan Brown and William Shakespeare, Jodi Picoult is able to write wonderful stories that keep the reader entertained from start to finish. But these writers have something else in common: when they find a plot formula they like, they run that sucker into the ground. Picoult's novels follow this track: Improbable and dramatic event (Sister suing parents over kidney transplant, Amish girl accused of killing her baby, father arrested for kidnapping his own daughter), dramatic trial, switching narratives, two people falling in love who shouldn't, dramatic trial decision, twist ending. Read one and you've pretty much read them all. But My Sister's Keeper is the best of the bunch, so pick that one. Skip Nineteen Minutes and The Tenth Circle; they're the worst of the bunch.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Tammy

    Beautiful, tragic and thought provoking.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Drew

    “You don’t love someone because they’re perfect, you love them in spite of the fact that they’re not.” 3 1/2 stars. Lowered my rating because of that ending I saw coming a mile away. Whoa, that was a seriously intense family drama. Such a compelling, original plot that brought up a lot of questions, but the author left them for the reader to decide. I love when authors do that, instead of answering controversial topics with their own opinion. Everyone's going to have a different opinion, so why “You don’t love someone because they’re perfect, you love them in spite of the fact that they’re not.” 3 1/2 stars. Lowered my rating because of that ending I saw coming a mile away. Whoa, that was a seriously intense family drama. Such a compelling, original plot that brought up a lot of questions, but the author left them for the reader to decide. I love when authors do that, instead of answering controversial topics with their own opinion. Everyone's going to have a different opinion, so why not leave the questions open? My Sister's Keeper follows thirteen-year-old Anna, who is suing her parents for the right to her own body. She was literally created in a medical lab to be a donor for her sister, Kate, who has leukemia. Ever since Anna was an infant, blood, bone marrow, and more have been drawn from her to save her sister. Mere hours after she was born, the blood from her umbilical cord was taken. Her parents never asked her if she was okay with this, so desperate were they to save Kate. Now they want her to donate a kidney, but Anna, tired of being "invisible," seen only as a donor for Kate, is finally putting her foot down. Anna hires a sympathetic lawyer and takes her parents to court. The lawsuit is messy and complicated, as it revolves around a broken family whose immediate concern has always been Kate. The case is presented - Anna wants the right to her own body, and Anna's mother thinks she should put Kate first. “It is the things you cannot see coming that are strong enough to kill you.” This was a wonderful character study. The chapters changed narratives and Picoult dug into each character's mind. It was so sad, too. Getting to see the perspectives of Anna's mom and dad was heartbreaking. Their ragged hopelessness about Kate's situation was shown, and they were desperate to do anything to save their daughter - even if it meant risking Anna's life. The turnout isn't quite satisfactory, for in the end there is no right answer. When you're juggling such hard choices - a girl's right to say "no" and the possibility that you could save someone's life - who is to make the final call? A thought-provoking, emotional read.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Vina

    “You don't love someone because they're perfect, you love them in spite of the fact that they're not.” While the entire book , I wanted to scream : MY SISTER'S KEEPER is a delicate , beautiful story about family, life, love, friendship, decisions and fate. 13 year old Anna, originally conceived to save her sister Kate's life through various invasive donor treatments, has had enough. To legally emancipate herself, she hires Attorney Campbell to help guide her through the courts. I have different op “You don't love someone because they're perfect, you love them in spite of the fact that they're not.” While the entire book , I wanted to scream : MY SISTER'S KEEPER is a delicate , beautiful story about family, life, love, friendship, decisions and fate. 13 year old Anna, originally conceived to save her sister Kate's life through various invasive donor treatments, has had enough. To legally emancipate herself, she hires Attorney Campbell to help guide her through the courts. I have different opinion about each character, so here we go: I was disgusted by Sarah (the mom)who, upon discovering that her daughter Kate has leukemia, decides to have another daughter (Anna) from whom she can "borrow" body parts from whenever Kate needs a transplant or transfusion. This is sick and wrong. Her love for her daughters (and not to mention her son) is unequal. I loved EVERYTHING about Campbell. Thanks to him I had developed a thing for lawyers.I also loved his side story with Julia.I was surprised by the why he kept his dog, I could had never guessed. I loved Brian (the dad) and the way he supported his wife the entire book, even when he was doubting her decisions .He really didn't want anything more than to keep his family together. I felt sorry for Jesse.He was so neglected by his parents that he felt as if he wasn't part of this family . The ending was a huge shocker for me. But I could understand where Picoult was coming from when she wrote it. This was sadly the only way to end this story to give us all a good lesson. Sometimes we live in the "What Ifs" and days, months and years fly by us without us even realizing it. We tend to find ourselves living more on rainy days and waiting for sunshine instead of jumping in the puddles and enjoying the little things. That is what the ending was trying to show us...it's not until we lose what's really important in life that we change our ways and realize what blessings we truly have.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Mohammed Arabey

    The Fault in Our Stars قبل My Sister's Keeper كان هناك شاهدت الفيلم وآلمني جدا وأوجعني, مع اني لقيت نفسي ببتسم اوي في اوقات وبفرح لفرح الابطال وتلك العائله وحكايتها المأساويه..والتي شهدت اوجع افراح حياتها حاولت اوقفه قبل النهاية بقليل لأقرأ الرواية فيما بعد ولا احرق النهاية ولكن لم استطع الفيلم المبني علي رواية يحكي مايلي فتاة مصابه بمرض سرطان الدم ترتب عليه فشل كلوى، تلجأ والدتها لانجاب طفلة أنابيب لتنقل منها الدم، كرات الدم البيضاء والنخاع منذ صغرها...حتي ما أن تتم عمرا مناسبا سيتم أجراء عملية نق The Fault in Our Stars قبل My Sister's Keeper كان هناك شاهدت الفيلم وآلمني جدا وأوجعني, مع اني لقيت نفسي ببتسم اوي في اوقات وبفرح لفرح الابطال وتلك العائله وحكايتها المأساويه..والتي شهدت اوجع افراح حياتها حاولت اوقفه قبل النهاية بقليل لأقرأ الرواية فيما بعد ولا احرق النهاية ولكن لم استطع الفيلم المبني علي رواية يحكي مايلي فتاة مصابه بمرض سرطان الدم ترتب عليه فشل كلوى، تلجأ والدتها لانجاب طفلة أنابيب لتنقل منها الدم، كرات الدم البيضاء والنخاع منذ صغرها...حتي ما أن تتم عمرا مناسبا سيتم أجراء عملية نقل الكلي بينها وبين أختها المريضة ولكن تبدأ احداث الفيلم بتدهور حاله الفتاة المريضة..والفتاه السليمة، ذات الاحدي عشر عاما ، تفجر قنبلة..تذهب لمحامي مخضرم كي ترفعي دعوي علي والدتها كي لا تتبرع بكليتها لأختها *********************************** وجع قلب، مشاعر رهيبه، مؤلمة وقاسية..ستتعرف علي القصه بفلاش باك، ولا تملك سوي التعاطف مع كل الابطال/رواة الحكاية..حتي المحامي نفسه ريفيو الروايه ان شاء الله قريب ، اشتريت الرواية بعد ترشيحها هي والفيلم من احد الاصدقاء "احمد السيد" عندما عرف اعجابي ب The Fault in our Stars الفيلم اصعب بكثير والرواية حسب ما سمعت ذات نهاية متغيرة عن نهاية الفيلم محمد العربي في 13 ابريل 2014

  30. 4 out of 5

    Petra

    Well.....that answers that: would I enjoy Jodi Picoult's writing? Answer: not really. I found the story long drawn out with very little substance to the heartbreaking story she was trying to tell. A romance is thrown in that brought nothing to the table & wasn't a part of the main story. The story behind the service dog was also another red herring and a secret that didn't need to be so. Then, after all that, and we wait to find out what the final decision will be.....the story changes tack Well.....that answers that: would I enjoy Jodi Picoult's writing? Answer: not really. I found the story long drawn out with very little substance to the heartbreaking story she was trying to tell. A romance is thrown in that brought nothing to the table & wasn't a part of the main story. The story behind the service dog was also another red herring and a secret that didn't need to be so. Then, after all that, and we wait to find out what the final decision will be.....the story changes tack and the author ends it in an incredibly lazy way. I'm glad I read a Jodi Picoult book so that now, when I see one of her titles, I don't have to wonder whether I might like it; I'll know that I probably wouldn't and can easily walk away.

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