From the moment I opened that book, I was hooked. Hooked on the lyricism, the rich description and the brilliant characters.
It was the first of many Picoult novels I devoured, drawn to the way she tackles complex issues and never shies away from the depth of human emotion.
What’s more, the longevity of her career is incredible. Since the publication of her debut novel, Songs of the Humpback Whale in 1992, she has consistently topped charts with her 25 books, earning international acclaim.
If you’ve never read Jodi Picoult, here’s where to start. We’ve rounded up our favourites.
My Sister’s Keeper
Organ donation is a difficult and complicated issue – but Jodi Picoult handles the topic with sensitivity and brilliance. Thirteen-year-old Anna has grown up knowing she was born to be her sister, Kate’s bone marrow donor. But when Anna is told Kate needs a new kidney, she begins to question how much she should be prepared to do for her sister…
Following her mother’s death, baker Sage Singer is grieving. When she meets elderly man, Josef Weber through her grief support group, the two of them became companions. But then Josef confesses his deepest secret to Sage: he is a murderer. A harrowing portrayal of love, the holocaust and forgiveness.
My first Picoult novel – and a gripping plot that will have you reading all day long. When Chris wakes up in hospital, his girlfriend, Emily is the first person he asks for. But Emily is dead, and Chris is the sole witness to what happened. He claims it was a suicide pact. Then the investigation turns up motive for murder – and Chris is the only suspect.
In nineteen minutes, you can do almost anything. In nineteen minutes, after years of cruel bullying from his classmates, Peter Houghton has killed ten residents of the town of Sterling. As a murder trial unfolds, the psychology behind what has turned this sweet, loving boy into a killer is fascinating.
Katie Fisher is Amish. Aged 18, she has grown up in a closed community secluded from the modern world. To leave it would be to lose everything. One night, a baby, Katie’s baby, arrives. When she wakes up, it has gone. Katie denies giving birth. She also denies harming her child. But then the baby’s body is found, a trial begins….
Small Great Things
This powerful novel covers some big themes: birth, death and responsibility. When a newborn baby dies after a routine hospital procedure, nurse Ruth Jefferson is held responsible. The baby’s white supremacist parents had banned Ruth, an African American woman, from touching their child. But when he goes into cardiac arrest, she is the only one there – and faced with an impossible choice. Soon to be a major film starring Julia Roberts and Viola Davis, this book will open your eyes.
When Mariah White catches her husband with another woman, her life starts to fall apart. Then her daughter, Faith, appears to start performing miracles – but is she truly seeing God? Or is she just a troubled young girl seeking refuge from her parents' divorce?
The Book of Two Ways
Jodi Picoult’s latest offering will be out in October – and is definitely one to pre-order. It follows Dawn, a death doula who finds herself contemplating her own life when the plane she’s on begins to plummet. There is so much she has abandoned, and choices she could have made. As her life forks in two very different directions, this intriguing novel asks what does a well-lived life truly look like?
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