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Keeping Faith Mass Market Paperback – August 26, 2008

4.2 out of 5 stars 1,257 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Fans of Picoult's fluent and absorbing storytelling will welcome her new novel, which, like Harvesting the Heart, explores family dynamics and the intricacies of motherhood, and concludes, as did The Pact, with tense courtroom drama. In the small town of New Canaan, N.H., 33-year-old Mariah discovers that her husband, Colin, is having an affair. Years ago, his cheating drove Mariah to attempt suicide and Colin had her briefly committed to an institution. Now Mariah's facing divorce and again fighting depression, when her eight-year-old daughter, Faith, suddenly acquires an imaginary friend. Soon this friend is telling the girl how to bring her grandmother back from the dead and how to cure a baby dying of AIDS. As Faith manifests stigmata, doctors are astounded, and religious controversy ensues, in part because Faith insists that God is a woman. An alarmed Colin sues for custody of Faith, and the fear of losing her daughter dramatically changes meek, diffident Mariah into a strong, protective and brave womanAone who fights for her daughter, holds her own against doctors and lawyers and finds the confidence to pursue a surprising new romance with TV atheist Ian Fletcher, cynical "Spokesman of the Millennium Generation." Though the novel feels a bit long, Picoult's pacing stabilizes the increasingly complicated plot, and the final chapters, in which Mariah fights for Faith's custody in court, are riveting. The mother-daughter relationship is all the more powerful for being buffeted by the exploitative and ethically questionable domains of medicine, media, law and religion; these characters' many triumphant transformations are Picoult's triumphs as well. Agent, Laura Gross.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

When seven-year-old Faith White and her mother, Mariah, swing by the house on the way to ballet class, they find that Daddy is home and he's brought a playmate. This is not the first time he's been caught cheating. After the fuss and feathers have settled and Dad has moved out, Faith begins talking to an imaginary friend who, it seems, is God. And God is not male but female. Faith is able to effect miraculous cures and is also occasionally afflicted with stigmata. When the media gets wind of this, the circus begins. The local rabbi takes an interest (Faith and Mariah are technically Jewish), and the local Catholic priest pays several inquiring visits. There is also a gaggle of psychologists. Throw in a professional atheist for the romance angle and a vicious custody fight with an egomaniacal lawyer, and you have a riveting read. Picot (The Pact, LJ 2/15/98) gets better and better with each book. If you can suspend disbelief on one or two points, this is an entrancing novel. Highly recommended.ADawn L. Anderson, North Richland Hills P.L., TX
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reprint edition (August 26, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061374962
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061374968
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,257 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,264 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jodi Picoult is the author of twenty-two novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers "The Storyteller," "Lone Wolf," "Between the Lines," "Sing You Home," "House Rules," "Handle with Care," "Change of Heart," "Nineteen Minutes," and "My Sister's Keeper." She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Seven-year-old Faith is caught in the middle of her parents crumbling marriage and in much need of a friend to confide in. That is when her imaginary friend "Guard" steps in. Not long after, miracles start to occur around Faith, and this small town in New Hampshire starts to realize that Faith is not only speaking to "God", but that her God is a woman.
The faithful start to arrive on Faiths' doorstep in search of miracles; along with the media led by a card carrying atheist whose TV show thrives on disproving such hype. They are all found camping out, waiting to have a moment, or a word with Faith. In the mean time the custody battle between Faiths' parents flares up leaving her torn between them as well as more confused with each passing day. The complications heighten when this innocent child exhibits the bleeding hands of the stigmata, leaving the doctors completely baffled.
Jodi Picoult is an author that will keep you coming back for more and will easily make a fan out of you. She takes a story and makes you question it every turn of the page. Something that may appear to be blatantly true is transformed into the totally unexpected, you will find yourself doubting just about everyone in the book at one point or another.
I suggest another of this authors books if you haven't had enough, "THE PACT, A LOVE STORY" which is about a teen suicide, another great read. The end of every chapter leaves you wondering about the veracity of each characters statement. Sometimes she does it with just one word, turning your idea of things "head over heels" when you thought you had it all figured out. Picoult is a truly talented author and worth watching and reading, you will certainly be entertained.
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Format: Paperback
As an avid Jodi Picoult fan, I was sorely disappointed by this novel. Normally, I can't put down her books while reading them, but by the middle of this one, I was only reading it so that I could finally finish it and move on to something else. It was unengaging at best, and just plain boring at worst. KEEPING FAITH tells the story of a young girl who has a special relationship with God. Page after page, Faith talks to God, Faith performs a miracle, Faith talks to God some more, Faith performs some more miracles, and ooh wow Faith knows things that she couldn't possibly know so it must be real! Not much else happened, save a custody battle toward the end, which was the only aspect of the book I actually found to be engaging. One of the frustrating things was that there wasn't much of a plot to this book. Essentially, after the first twenty pages or so, the plot is pretty stagnant up until the denouement, but the characters are all unsatisfied with things, and then post-exciting climactic stuff, things essentially return to exactly they were before, and that's the end.

One of Jodi Picoult's trademarks are her twist endings, which are often
aren't unexpected, but there was not one single thing about this novel that wasn't completely and utterly predictable. Insecure, self-loathing mother Mariah ends up falling for the "bad boy" atheist Ian. Shock. The worst thing about their relationship was that despite the fact that it was inevitable from before the two characters even laid eyes on one another, Picoult didn't bother to actually develop it. I'm normally a big fan of the bad boy type, and of relationships in which the bad boy falls for someone and finally opens up, but this didn't really happen here.
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9 Comments 68 of 74 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
In 380-ish pages that seem to turn themselves, Jodi Picoult makes readers stop and think about several issues as simple as mother-daughter relationships and as complex as God. Mariah White, for the second time in their marriage, catches her husband with another woman. The first time, she was pregnant with their daughter, Faith. The second time, Faith was with Mariah when Colin was caught in the act. The first time, Mariah tries to kill herself. The second time, Colin leaves and Faith's "Guard" shows up. The seven year old starts performing miracles, attracting media attention, develops stigmata and quotes the Bible, although she's never been subjected to it. Mariah tries to shield her daughter from the attention while trying to find out for sure what is wrong with her. The reader switches back and forth several times, wondering if Faith is seeing God or if her mother is seeking attention. The book ends with a custody battle between Colin and Mariah and the reader wondering how much "Faith" they really have and would have if in a similar circumstance. The book is filled with colorful characters, perhaps the best Mariah's hold-no-punches mother, Millie. A GREAT book that you won't put down, and won't forget after you do.
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Format: Paperback
As usual Jodi Picoult creates memorable characters and situations in this book. She explores the relationship between a mother, Mariah, and her daughter Faith, under extreme circumstances. At the beginning of the book, Mariah is very much in love with her husband Colin, despite the fact that he has been unfaithful to her and, at one point, has committed her to a mental hospital as the result of depression caused by his unfaithfulness. When she again discovers him with a woman, she goes into a tailspin and they divorce. About this time her daughter begins to spout scripture and relates coversations with God, who is a woman. When the girl begins working miracles, people flock to her in order to be healed. This unlikely scenario becomes even more complicated, as the girls' hands begin to bleed and the doctors cannot stop them. A custody battle ensues, and complications mount. Picoult's characters are believable, but the situations she puts them into are not, and this is what made the book less interesting to me. Hopefully, she will return to more realistic plots and will leave out the mystical aspects in future novels.
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