Hello, everyone. I have a book review for you all. It is My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult which was made into a film with Cameron Diaz. It is one of my favourite books so I thought I'd write about it, maybe give you a good review of it so you want to read it too!
This story is about Anna Fitzgerald's older sister, Kate, who suffers from acute promyelocytic lukemia, a blood and bone marrow cancer. To save Kate's life, Anna was created by Sara and Brian to donate what needs to be donated to help Kate. Initially, it is successful but the cancer continuously relapses throughout Kate's life, causing Anna to donate much of her blood and various other things to help her.
However, now that she is thirteen, she is told she needs to donate one of her kidneys which isn't guaranteed to work and the operation may kill Kate anyway as well as Anna's own life being impacted. Anna petitions for medical emancipation with help of Campbell Alexander, a lawyer who is willing to take her case. The court also appoints a guardian ad litem, Julia Romano, whose job is to decide what would be best for Anna. She was also romantically involved with Campbell back in their school days before he broke her heart. The story follows these people as they all become affected by Anna and Kate.
I'll be honest and straight. I didn't think I'd like this book when I first read it a few years ago. The medical terminology and law speak/court scenes was enough to put me off. I didn't really understand what exactly was being donated by Anna and what they were talking about when it came to her case. I almost gave up on the book because it is kind of a slow burner type of novel too.
There isn't actually much pace in the novel until about the middle-ish to the end either. There are chapters about the past and there are chapters focusing on the present. It works well once you really get into it because it ties in what happened and how the parents, Sara and Brian, came to their decisions and how they coped with them. The book centres around Anna's perspective as well as Brian and Sara's. We don't read any of Kate's thoughts or indeed their brother, Jesse, who is pretty much ignored by the rest of the family and sets buildings on fire in response. Dramatic, right?
I loved Jodi's style of writing because you become completely torn in your emotions. One minute, you're pissed at Sara and Brian for how they are using Anna and how they don't take into account her feelings or thoughts about certain situations. But then on the other hand, you realise you don't know what it's like to be a parent of a dying child while also trying to juggle life with a juvenile delinquent and a thirteen year old who is suing you! You are pulled one way and then another way throughout the entire book but in the end, you completely sympathise with them.
It's a heart-wrenching story that has you feeling all of the emotions! I couldn't put it down when I first read it and I still find myself going back to it from time to time because it is such a great story. The ending is absolutely heart breaking and a bit of a shock, actually. It is rare for me to cry at books, I tend to cry more at films and that but this really made me shed a tear. Especially because it is a book about cancer and I have lost a few people to that dreadful disease.
It might seem like a depressing book to read and it is at times but it is also an uplifting book because some relationships are healed which really makes you smile. It is worth reading because it has become one of my favourite books of all time. Once you get through the beginning, it is worth every page. I haven't watched the film yet but it is definitely on my to-watch list.
Have you read this book or seen the film? What did you think of it?
Thankyou for reading.