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Handle with Care: A Novel Paperback – September 15, 2009
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Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
It doesn't seem like the publishers bothered copyediting or proofreading this book. Kitty Litter should not be capitalized. I don't care how "mature" a 6 year old is, she would create a Gmail account. And, Jodi, please spare me the gratuitous references to Facebook. These are just a few things I can think of off the top of my head -- there were many more.
Perhaps releasing one book a year is too much for Jodi Picoult, because the product is suffering. Her stories used to be contemporary, heart-wrenching and full of plot twists.
Handle with Care is simply a regurgitation of lawyers, sisters with issues, second marriages, etc. With some bulimia and cutting thrown in and not really addressed. Not to mention the recipes. What was the point of those? Charlotte's career as a pastry chef seems conveniently trendy and never becomes anything more than that, except for the lame recipes scattered throughout the book. It's like Jodi's editors and marketing team sat around a table and came up with every single thing they could incorporate into this book and then threw each thing in, none of which were successful.
I'm glad I got this from the library instead of purchasing it. What a disappointment. Don't bother.
I found "Handle With Care" engrossing. I have a child with limited handicaps and I felt for Willow with every breath. But for me this was one more trial, one more heart-wrenching child, one more set of confused and inarticulate parents, one more lawyer with "issues" and one more manipulated ending too many. I can't tell you how very disappointed I was with this book. Lots of meringue but the filling was not fresh.
Warning: mild spoiler to follow.
Like her book last year, Change of Heart, this book just seems to follow a formula she's gotten too comfortable with in her last few novels: a child with a medical issue, parents with personal issues, and an angsty lawyer with a long backstory.
Probably the worst part of this book and Picoult's recent novels is her tendency to dive into these awful comparisons. She describes characters with breath that smells of coffee and regret, and cookies that are baked with a special ingredient: the ingredient of remorse. The characters are constantly looking at or holding on to something physical, then realizing what they are really looking at/holding is a feeling: sympathy, love, grief, etc. Give me a break. I could handle these once every few chapters, but there is literally one of these every few pages. Is someone ghostwriting this stuff in?
As a mother, I found the character of Charlotte to be completely unbelievable. Throughout the novel, she recognizes the fact that filing a wrongful birth lawsuit may destroy her daughter's image of her and of herself, but all she cares about is money, even when they never previously struggled with money.Read more ›
The issue of whether or not parents should be made aware of disabilities discovered while their child is in utero, so that a decision about whether or not to terminate the pregnancy can be made, is very poignant to today's science and ethics debates. The added hook of bringing in an attorney for the disabled girl's parents who was adopted helped to clarify some of the gray edges that were all over the place in this story.
The other sideline tale of Amelia, sister to Willow (the disabled child at the crux of the controversy within this story), really pulled at my heartstrings. I feel this girl, more than anyone else, felt the turmoil that resulted from having a disabled family member and a family falling apart around her.
Those are the things I liked about the story. Here's what irked me:
1. The resolution of Amelia's story came too easily. I think it sold her short.
2. I actually started a tally sheet about halfway through the novel to track how many times the phrase "catch-22" was used. Can we say overkill?
3. The diary-entry style of writing, from the characters points of view to Willow, made it really easy to pick out the ending.
4. As some others have pointed out in their reviews, this story was nearly IDENTICAL to "My Sister's Keeper" and the conclusion only confirmed what I'd been thinking for most of the story. It really felt like a cop out and Jodi Picoult is a better writer than that.
Like I said at the beginning, I was entertained for the majority of this story.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It took me a short time to really get into this book, but once I did, it was often calling me to get back to it to read more. Read morePublished 12 days ago by Virginia Marmol
This story was as good as any of her others. It is all about family, relationships, heartache, love . the unexpected and betrayal. Read morePublished 15 days ago by bernadette hopke
I'm a huge fan of Jodi Picoult's books, and this one did not disappoint! It is a very touching story about the strain that is put on a family when one of the family members is... Read morePublished 16 days ago by Lauren S.
Like all of her novels, you get drawn in slowly, then all of a sudden you can't put it down. At the end you are left feeling bereft, wanting more of the characters after having... Read morePublished 29 days ago by Susie