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March 2023

Addie Ann must solve the mystery of who ruined their community garden, or her Uncle Bump will go to jail for a crime he didn’t commit.  A good book that went a little long in some parts for me.  Overall, an excellent coming of age story, and an inspiring example of what one girl can accomplish when she dares to tell the truth and stand up for justice.

Before Judge Judy was “Judge Judy,” she was Judge Sheindlin, a Family Court judge in Manhattan.  When she became fed up with the system, she wrote this book, detailing the decline in personal responsibility that she’s seen over the years, and how our broken court system contributes to the mess.  Although I don’t agree with Sheindline on everything (her views on abortion, for example), it’s refreshing to read an open, honest and informed assessment about where we’re going wrong, and what we need to do to fix it.

A fairly typical book for Picoult, focuisng on a mother trying to protect her child, and of course concluding with the ever present court case. What makes this book a little bit different is that the child – Faith – is receiving visits from God, in the form of a woman. Faith is also able to heal people, and has stigmata. It sounds stranger in summary than it did in the book. My biggest complaint is that the ending was weak.

Vanishing Acts : A NovelDelia lives in New Hampshire with her daughter and father. She’s making plans to marry her childhood sweetheart and boyfriend, when she receives some shocking news that changes her life. Delia must now come to terms with a past that she didn’t remember. I won’t say more, or I’ll spoil the mysteries of the book, which were fairly suspenseful.

Typical Picoult book. The basic premise of many of her books (Vanishing Acts; Perfect Match; The Pact) is that people do illegal things for all sorts of justifiable reasons, and we should feel good when the juries don’t send them to jail. While this may be true in some instances, Picoult needs to find a new formula for her books. There are only so many justifiable crimes left.