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The Tenth Circle: A Novel
 
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The Tenth Circle: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Jodi Picoult
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (405 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $6.99
You Save: $9.01 (56%)
Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc

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Book Description

Jodi Picoult, the New York Times bestselling author of Vanishing Acts, offers her most powerful chronicle yet of an American family with a story that probes the unbreakable bond between parent and child -- and the dangerous repercussions of trying to play the hero.

Trixie Stone is fourteen years old and in love for the first time. She's also the light of her father's life -- a straight-A student; a freshman in high school who is pretty and popular; a girl who's always looked up to Daniel Stone as a hero. Until, that is, her world is turned upside down with a single act of violence...and suddenly everything Trixie has believed about her family -- and herself -- seems to be a lie.

For fifteen years, Daniel Stone has been an even-tempered, mild-mannered man: a stay-at-home dad to Trixie and a husband who has put his own career as a comic book artist behind that of his wife, Laura, who teaches Dante's Inferno at a local college. But years ago, he was completely different: growing up as the only white boy in an Eskimo village, he was teased mercilessly for the color of his skin. He learned to fight back: stealing, drinking, robbing, and cheating his way out of the Alaskan bush. To become part of a family, he reinvented himself, channeling his rage onto the page and burying his past completely...until now. Could the young boy who once made Trixie's face fill with light when he came to the door have been the one to end her childhood forever? She says that he is, and that is all it takes to make Daniel, a man with a history he has hidden even from his family, venture to hell and back in order to protect his daughter.

The Tenth Circle looks at that delicate moment when a child learns that her parents don't know all of the answers and when being a good parent means letting go of your child. It asks whether you can reinvent yourself in the course of a lifetime or if your mistakes are carried forever -- if life is, as in any good comic book, a struggle to control good and evil, or if good and evil control you.

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Bestselling author Jodi Picoult's The Tenth Circle is a metaphorical journey through Dante's Inferno, told through the eyes of a small Maine family whose hidden demons haunt every aspect of their seemingly peaceful existence. Woven throughout the novel are a series of dramatic illustrations that pay homage to the family's patriarch (comic book artist Daniel Stone), and add a unique twist to this gripping, yet somewhat rhetorical tale.

Trixie Stone is an imaginative, perceptive 14 year old whose life begins to unravel when Jason Underhill, Bethel High's star hockey player, breaks up with her, leaving a void that can only be filled by the blood spilled during shameful self-mutilations in the girls' bathroom. While Trixie's dad Daniel notices his daughter's recent change in demeanor, he turns a blind eye, just as he does to the obvious affair his wife Laura, a college professor, is barely trying to conceal. When Trixie gets raped at a friend's party, Daniel and Laura are forced to deal not only with the consequences of their daughter's physical and emotional trauma, but with their own transgressions as well. For Daniel, that means reflecting on a childhood spent as the only white kid in a native Alaskan village, where isolation and loneliness turned him into a recluse, only to be born again after falling in love with his wife. Laura, who blames her family's unraveling on her selfish affair, must decide how to reconcile her personal desires with her loved ones' needs.

The Tenth Circle is chock full of symbolism and allegory that at times can seem oppresive. Still, Picoult's fans will welcome this skillfully told story of betrayal and its many negative, and positive consequences. --Gisele Toueg

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Some of Picoult's best storytelling distinguishes her twisting, metaphor-rich 13th novel (after Vanishing Acts) about parental vigilance gone haywire, inner demons and the emotional risks of relationships. Comic book artist Daniel Stone is like the character in his graphic novel with the same title as this book—once a violent youth and the only white boy in an Alaskan Inuit village, now a loving, stay-at-home dad in Bethel, Maine—traveling figuratively through Dante's circles of hell to save his 14-year-old teenage daughter, Trixie. After she accuses her ex-boyfriend of rape, Trixie—and Daniel, whose fierce father-love morphs to murderous rage toward her assailant—unravel in the aftermath of the allegation. At the same time, wife and mother Laura, a Dante scholar, tries to mend her and Daniel's marriage after ending her affair with one of her students. Picoult has collaborated with graphic artist Dustin Weaver to illustrate her deft, complex exploration of Daniel and his beast within, but the drawings, though well-done, distract from the powerful picture she has drawn with words. Laura and Daniel follow their runaway daughter to Alaska, at which point Picoult drives the story with the heavy-handed Dante metaphor—not the characters. Still, this story of a flawed family on the brink of destruction grips from start to finish.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • File Size: 28714 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books (March 7, 2006)
  • Publication Date: March 7, 2006
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FCKS00
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,360 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
125 of 134 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
There is so much I love about Jodi Picoult's writing and I always look forward to each new book of hers. I was intrigued that this one combined traditional writing with parts that were portrayed in comic book form (she got an actual professional comic book artist to do the drawings and they are nicely done.

However, I found the story to be very convuluted and the premise (was a young girl raped? Or not?) to be unbelievable in the way it played out, taking the whole thing to court. The case was far from clear cut and there were all sorts of potentially incriminating circumstances (at least, from a jury's point of view).

Picoult's greatest strength is her ability to glean insights about human behavior and the darkest, most hidden parts of people...and then bring them to light. In that regard, she doesn't disappoint this time around. I was intrigued by each character, from Daniel, a man who spent a great deal of his life in Alaska and had a dark, troubled past...to his wife, Laura, a woman who'd been drawn to the rebel spirit in Daniel and then grew disappointed when he became more conventional.

At the heart of the book is Trixie Stone, the 14 year old daughter of Daniel and Laura, a teen who may or may not have been raped by her ex-boyfriend. I believe Picoult skillfully portrayed all the emotional highs and lows of today's 14 year old girls, half women, half girls...and growing up far too fast. I felt for Trixie and parts of the book were almost too painful to read as her heartbreak and pain shone through so clearly.

Where the book failed me was in the plot which veered and teetered close to soap opera material. There were just too many "over the top" moments and that's when I started to lose interest. I found myself saying, "Oh, come on!
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43 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Provocative, interesting plot, but flawed. March 22, 2006
Format:Hardcover
The plot of this page-turner is worthy of 5 stars.

Summary, no spoilers: Trixie, 14 years old, is despondent because her boyfriend Jason broke up with her. Thinking she can win him back, Trixie lies to her parents and goes to a party with her best friend, hoping she will see him there.

Picoult does a wonderful job of explaining the party life for teenagers today, and it is upsetting. We learn the concepts of "hooking up" and "friends with benefits." Woman's lib has taken a big step backwards.

Trixie drinks at the party, is involved in a game of strip poker, and engages in some sexual activity with one guy. Then she sees Jason.

The next thing we know is Trixie is accusing Jason of rape.

The conversations between the DA and the detective are terrific, as the DA explains the problems with even attempting to file rape charges under these circumstances.

The problem, and I cannot say more than this without giving way a spoiler, is that Picoult later has the authorities behave illogically, in order to proceed with the story.

The chapters involving Trixie were provocative and interesting. Picoult does an excellent job of making us feel empathy and sympathy for both Trixie and Jason. I was much less interested in reading about her parents, and found some of their story and actions less believable and reading more like filler.

Still, recommended, especially for book clubs. Boy is there a lot to talk about.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Tenth Circle - Jodi Picoult May 20, 2006
By lawliss
Format:Hardcover
I just finished reading The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult. This novel is supposed to be a metaphorical journey through Dante's inferno and which culminates in a battle in the ice depths of "hell," which, interestingly enough, is Alaska in this novel.

Trixie is the main character - she is a 14 year old junior high school student whose heart has just recently been broken when her older boyfriend, Jason, decides to break up with her. At home, her father Daniel turns a blind eye to the pain that Trixie is in, even though she has begun self-mutilating herself in the girls' room, as well as the affair that his wife is having with a younger man that is also her T.A. in the classes that she teaches at the local college. However, at a friend's party, Trixie allegedly gets raped and this forces the family to confront not only Trixie's emotional and physical fallout from the rape but also their own issues and the fallout from those issues.

There were some weaknesses in this novel - the story was really twisted and confusing in parts. It was hard to follow. Did a rape happen or not? Maybe that was part of Picoult's plan - to keep us guessing. The way that it played out was more unbelievable than anything - in the real world, a case like this may have been withdrawn completely or changed to something other than a rape case.

I loved seeing how the characters morphed and developed over the span of 400 pages. I also loved the comic inserts. I felt that they really helped me understand Daniel Stone and how he viewed himself and his role as Trixie's father.

By the time that the stroy line got to Alaska, I wsa hoping that the novel would end quite frankly. I felt like it was an over the top tale in parts and I was happy when it ended.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Slow down a little, Jodi... November 15, 2006
Format:Paperback
I haven't read a Picoult book in a while because her formula was bothering me but I saw this in the airport and decided it would be a easy yet entertaining read for the tedious 3 hour journey.

It was entertaining to the extent that I finished it. Unfortunately - it was still formulaic and completely predictable.

Elements that I liked:

- Rape is very rarely easy to sort out and date rape cases involving drugs, ex-boyfriends and alcohol are especially difficult. The confusion and obfuscation that Picoult writes (whether that was her intention or just poor writing) surrounding the issue can be representative of an actual rape.

- Teenagers are notoriously melodramatic and self pitying and Trixie, though a little over the top, seemed like a typical teenager... the reaction of other students at her school to the rape and Trixie also seem plausible.

- I liked the graphic novel. The melodramatic aspects are typical of the genre and it was a great way to try and illustrate Daniel. The hidden word bit - hokey.

- I liked learning about the native cultures in Alaska. I would like to read a whole book that takes place there and explores the themes though maybe not by Picoult.

- I liked the idiot's guide to Dante that was incorporated into the book.

Things I didn't like:

- Picoult tries to incorporate too much into this book and thus wasn't able to fully develop it all. Though I liked the native Alaskan bit, it was too jumbled and it didn't really add to the plot. Like another reviewer I wasn't left with the impression that Daniel's haunted past resurfaced. I was expecting a lot more. Murder? That's too much to add to this already overburdened plot.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars THE TENTH CIRCLE
Interesting book ~ Held my interest:)
Published 2 days ago by 4u
2.0 out of 5 stars Dissappointing
I usually love this author's books but not this one. It began very well but seemed to fall apart along the way and then, the ending. Spoiler alert...seriously?! Read more
Published 13 days ago by Justwhoiam
5.0 out of 5 stars jodi picoult has another winning book
as usual the author kept my attention and my admiration for her research into the subject matter. i read it on my kindle so i missed out on the comic book story that was similar... Read more
Published 18 days ago by Clara Saulitis
2.0 out of 5 stars Not up to her usual standard
I picked up this book in anticipation of a long airline flight, figuring I couldn't go wrong with Jodi Picoult. I have read several of her other novels and enjoyed them all. Read more
Published 26 days ago by D. Jennings
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book. Well written. I feel like I know the characters personally.
Published 28 days ago by Heather Griffith
3.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite authors
I really enjoyed the beginning of this book. Very intriguing, keeps you wondering what is the truth, what are the secrets? Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mistie Dawn
5.0 out of 5 stars The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult
I have yet to read one of Jodi Picoult's books that I didn't like. This was just another example of her terrific storytelling talent.
Published 1 month ago by PSMaschino
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacking meaning
I love Jodi Picoult, her books always leave me with feeling at the end. This one did as well but I didn't enjoy it quite as much as some of the others. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Michelle Bacci
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great book but the ending was abrupt with no conclusion
Published 2 months ago by Alyson Rossi
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Not as good as she usually is, but ok
Published 2 months ago by nena walsh
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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.

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Trixie
"I mean come on, she's been having sex with her boyfriend for sometime and then she says she was raped?"

Are you actually suggesting that just because someone said yes once, they can never refuse to have sex ever again with that person? Wow.
Dec 31, 2010 by C. Green |  See all 2 posts
Could Not Abide Laura or Rotten Jason
He was not "wrongly" accused; he knowingly took advantage of her off-kilter desperation. If he were mature or making decisions that were moral instead of expedient (she was there, she was still in love with him, he was "entitled"), he could have - even a testosterone-fueled... Read More
Sep 7, 2009 by James |  See all 5 posts
Did anyone feel bad for Jason?
Yes, I felt sorry for Jason, as, from his point of view, he didn't rape her.

You have to read between the lines in the book, and reread certain parts to realize that Trixie was NOT lying. She was drugged, and this resulted in her waking up to someone having sex with her. She doesn't remember... Read More
Nov 4, 2007 by renatae33 |  See all 8 posts
What drug?
the drug was ketamine, or they called it Special K.
Apr 24, 2008 by Jenny |  See all 2 posts
Lost & confused! (Spoiler request)
I loved this book. Trixie never said no but once she realized that all Jason wanted her for was a 15 minute lay, she changed her mind about having sex with him and felt violated. She tried to get away from him but because of the drug, she couldn't move her arms and legs. She felt raped but he... Read More
Dec 24, 2007 by reilly2u |  See all 8 posts
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