The basics: Sing You Home is the story of Zoe Baxter, a music therapist who has struggled to get pregnant for years; her husband Max, a recovered alcoholic who owns a lawncare business; Max's brother and sister-in-law, devout Christians who have also struggled with fertility issues; and Vanessa, a high school guidance counselor.
My thoughts: In typical Picoult style, this story is told from multiple points of view. It was a diversion for her, however, as most of the action lies with Vanessa, Zoe and Max. For me, the story wasn't compelling or convincing enough, and Picoult's writing isn't strong enough to carry 480 pages. In some ways, Picoult tried to do too much (homosexuality and infertility? I expected more characters), but she really did quite little. I admire her tackling a difficult subject when many presume her audience to be middle American women. Will this book change anyone's mind? I'm doubtful. Did Picoult try to see the controversial issues from multiple angles? Yes.
Picoult lovers will find much in this novel is familiar: medical and legal battles told from multiple points of view. Even though I've only read three of her novels, her formula struck me as annoying. Vanessa was by far my favorite character, but I didn't feel much empathy for anyone. Sure, there were compelling scenes that brought me to tears. Yes, I read the novel in two days, which is impressive for a 480 pages, but it was a quick read. There weren't sentences I lingered on to appreciate their structure or wonder.
The verdict: Picoult lovers will delight in another familiar tale of legal and medical battles, but this novel won't entice those who have grown weary of her formula or those who are leery of venturing into Picoult-land.
Note: There were many mentions of music in this novel, and Picoult wrote songs for a cd, but the cd was not included in my ARC. Before several chapters, there were cues to play particular tracks.
Rating: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
Length: 480 pages (but a quick read)
Publication date: March 1, 2011 pre-order it from Amazon or an independent bookstore
Source: Crazy Book Tours
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