Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Archive for the tag “family”

rdoak03’s #CBR4 review 39: Lone Wolf by Jodi Picoult

Lone WolfLone Wolf by Jodi Picoult

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Most people either really love Jodi Picoult or really don’t. I am generally a neutral party- some of her books I love, some are just so-so for me. This book definitely fell into the “love” category.

The whole story just feels so raw. Painful family relationships are juxtaposed with close encounters with wolves, both in captivity and in the wild. I know this sounds like a strange combination, but it works.

Luke is a father of two and a wolf activist. He not only leaves his family for almost two years to live in the wild, he also maintains a pack in captivity. He has dedicated his life to preservation and education.

Luke’s daughter, Cara, moves in with him after her parents divorce. Edward, Cara’s older brother, packed up and left the country when he was just 18. The estranged siblings are thrown together when tragedy strikes and Luke is in a coma.

I won’t give away the rest of the book, because the major drama and emotion in the book comes from the siblings’ differing views on end-of-life decisions.

This was touching and heart-wrenching, at times even painful. But beautifully done!

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PerpetualIntern’s #CBR4 Review #13: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

I took the advice of all the other Cannonballers on here and picked up this lovely little novel.  It was a quick read but one that managed to accomplish a lot.  The characters were complex and sweet and the relationships were heartbreaking and real.

I won’t spend much time rehashing the plot since there have already been so many reviews.  Hazel is a cancer patient whose lung cancer has gone into retreat, though she must tug around an oxygen tank at all times and her cancer threatens to come back at any moment.  She attends a support group for other cancer kids where she meets the handsome Augustus, a charismatic guy with bone cancer in full remission.  The book follows their relationship through friendship and the bloom of first love.  At the same time, Hazel is obsessed with a book about a young woman with cancer and she uses the novel like a security blanket.  Together, she and Augustus embark on a journey to meet the reclusive author of the book.

I have to say I didn’t love this book as much as the other Cannonballers, though I did enjoy it.  The relationship that spoke to me the most was actually that of Hazel with her mother.  Hazel knows that her cancer will eventually kill her.  She struggles the get her mother to say “WHEN you die” as opposed to “IF you die” and worries so much about her mother’s identity after she’s gone.  Their relationship was honest and real and heartbreaking.  Overall, this book was a good read, and I could see it being great for young adults.

HelloKatieO’s #CBR4 Review #21: Trail of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz

This is document 5 in Lisa Lutz’s Spellman series, and it was wonderful. For those of you haven’t been introduced to the wonderfully dysfunctional family of private investigators, the Spellmans, I recommend starting with document 1, The Spellman Files. It’s not necessary, because the book contains an appendix reviewing all the major players, but it helps. Lutz introduces a few new characters in this book (an ex-con, Demetrius, their grandmother, Henry’s mom) and brings back some of our favorite old players (Bernie, Fred).

These books are just funny. Laugh out loud funny. There’s an appropriate level of romance, with Isabel’s on again/of again relationship with the (probable) love of her life, Henry the cop. There’s quirk, but not reaching New Girl levels of quirkiness. The family is goofy, the things they do to each other in a never ending series of revenge stunts are ludicrous, and there’s usually some kind of mystery tossed in for good measure.


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