Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Storyteller

The latest Jodi Picoult book, The Storyteller, is not quite a book I would classify as a "Jodi Picoult" book. I'd classify it as a Holocaust novel instead; it is very much unlike all her other works. Picoult tries to make it her own, make it thought provoking, but for me, it's simply a Holocaust novel. The Storyteller is three stories in one, the past, the present, and the allegory. I enjoyed all three aspects, and felt that they could all stand independently, in fact, I would have been fine without the "present" story. Generally, though, I feel that way about all past/present historical fiction novels. 
So, I did like it. The characters were real, imperfectly so. The story was compelling. I enjoyed reading it, couldn't put it down at parts. The questions of the novel, "Can you forgive the unforgivable?" and "Where is the line between justice and mercy?" did not impact me on the level I would have liked them to, nor did I bond with Sage since I feel I would have made different choices. And yet, I am not Jewish. My grandmother was not in a concentration camp. A Nazi Officer has not asked me to forgive him. This isn't a realistic question for me. I would like to think one way, but until you're in the situation yourself, can you really know how you would respond? I'm not sure. 
The Storyteller is not an original novel, but it is a good read. I highly recommend it. 4.5 Stars.

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