Just Enough to Pull Me In

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            I really enjoyed reading Janet Masin's review of Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult. This is a novel I read a few years ago; however, I thought it worked best for this assignment being that the other novels I most recently read had merely one or two sentence reviews. Being that it has been a few years since I read this book, Masin's review really helped me remember the plotline and the significant meanings in the book. Without giving away any major events, she simply raises questions that the book raises in the very beginning and provides detailed character descriptions. I love the way she began her article by writing about Picoult's journey; "Some of it took her to a prison in Arizona, where she found herself right next to the lethal-injection gurney while discussing the death penalty with the warden. She also visited a gas chamber. She spoke with a condemned man". Immediately she pulls her readers in by showing where the novel will take place and that it will be about a much debated and touchy concept: the concept of death row. Masin targets those who are unfamiliar with Jodi Picoult by describing her success as a writer, "Ms. Picoult's books currently top both The New York Times's hardcover and paperback best-seller lists". I was really impressed with Masin's ability to write a description of all the major characters without boring me. She comments on the comedic relief of the lawyer, Maggie, and the mysteriousness of Shay, the death row inmate, or as Masin recalls the nickname he is given in the novel 'the Death Row Messiah'. Overall, Masin succeeded in cutting a complex novel down to size by raising unanswered questions that I believe most people would want to read to find out.



Jessie Krehlik said:

It's nice that she does provides detailed character descriptions. For me, identifying with characters is key when I'm reading a story, so if the review gives a brief overview of the characters, I'll be more likely to read the book if I like the characters.

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