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Handle with Care: A Novel [Paperback]

Jodi Picoult
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Sept. 15 2009

Things break all the time.
Day breaks, waves break, voices break.
Promises break.
Hearts break.

Every expectant parent will tell you that they don't want a perfect baby, just a healthy one. Charlotte and Sean O'Keefe would have asked for a healthy baby, too, if they'd been given the choice. Instead, their lives are made up of sleepless nights, mounting bills, the pitying stares of "luckier" parents, and maybe worst of all, the what-ifs. What if their child had been born healthy? But it's all worth it because Willow is, well, funny as it seems, perfect. She's smart as a whip, on her way to being as pretty as her mother, kind, brave, and for a five-year-old an unexpectedly deep source of wisdom. Willow is Willow, in sickness and in health.

Everything changes, though, after a series of events forces Charlotte and her husband to confront the most serious what-ifs of all. What if Charlotte should have known earlier of Willow's illness? What if things could have been different? What if their beloved Willow had never been born? To do Willow justice, Charlotte must ask herself these questions and one more. What constitutes a valuable life?

Emotionally riveting and profoundly moving, Handle with Care brings us into the heart of a family bound by an incredible burden, a desperate will to keep their ties from breaking, and, ultimately, a powerful capacity for love. Written with the grace and wisdom she's become famous for, beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult offers us an unforgettable novel about the fragility of life and the lengths we will go to protect it.

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Handle with Care: A Novel + House Rules: A Novel
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Praise for Jodi Picoult -- : 'Jodi Picoult is not one to shy away from fictional controversy; in fact, the more tangled and messy a moral dilemma appears, the better she likes it. -- Daily Mail 'Impossible to put down and stayed in my mind long after I had finished' -- Observer 'Superb, many-stranded, and grimly topical' -- The Times 'Picoult has an uncanny knack of dreaming up moral dilemmas that you cannot ignore: you must know the resolution ... A challenging and clever read' -- Sunday Express 20080413 'Dark, serious books that explore family relationships and scary moral dilemmas involving religion, crime and politics' -- Heat 20080419 --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Jodi Picoult received an AB in creative writing from Princeton and a master’s degree in education from Harvard. The recipient of the 2003 New England Book Award for her entire body of work, she is the author of twenty-one novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers House Rules, Handle With Care, Change of Heart, and My Sister’s Keeper, for which she received the American Library Association’s Margaret Alexander Edwards Award. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children. Visit her website at JodiPicoult.com.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars spoiler alert... Oct. 16 2011
As a Jodi Picoult fan, I found this book as per usual riveting. The "controversy" and the "conflict between family characters" although cliche now was still entertaining and had me reading.
The ending though was stupid. I actually rolled my eyes and threw the book down. Come on Jodi- we fans deserve a little more credit. Stop being so predictable and lame. I think I read my last Jodi Picoult book. I'm done.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not great. April 23 2010
I've come to expect a lot from Jodi Picoult, but this one let me down. The focus on the book wasn't on the illness, or whose life is worth living. The focus was on a choice that wasn't given to the mother (not whether she would have chosen to abort), and how the lawsuit was interpreted by her family.
Very interesting read, and brings up some interesting issues (but then avoids them). I hated the ending.
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1.0 out of 5 stars All hail victimhood April 9 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What boring, utter drivel... perpetuating the myth of victimhood for some women who revel in acting like victims, in being viewed like victims... utter crap... a total waste of money.

It's a badly written book by a poor author, from the switching narrators to the idiotic way this premise was handled (without care). I've heard of wrongful death suits before and the best handling of it was in an episode of "Law & Order: Criminal Intent". Bad, bad book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very touching... Sept. 4 2013
By Pat the cat TOP 1000 REVIEWER
I think that it is the first book that I read by this author. I found it very touching, sad, interesting, enlightening and informative...It tells the story of a family who has a child who is born with osteogenesis imperfecta (aka, brittle bone disease). When the little girl is about 6 years old, a law firm mentions to the parents that they could pursue a tort law suit and possibly get a huge malpractice settlement that could help them take care of their daughter's special needs. It deals with the concept of wrongful birth and brings up the ethical issues associated with abortion and ending a pregnancy when a fetus shows disabilities. This is a very well written book. And, even though the topic is serious and sad, the author manages to make it engaging by making the various characters talk directly to the little girl as if the reader was her. It's really interesting to see how the family members deal with the situation and with one another (and those that surround them). We see it from the point of view of the father, the mother, her sister (who feels ignored) and the OB-GYN who is also a family friend. It was really well put together and there is a very surprising twist at the end. It's a very thoughtful book, one which forces you to consider your own values and makes you reflect on your own relationships and lifestyle. I give it 5/5 stars (excellent).
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4.0 out of 5 stars pleased Feb. 26 2012
By mlking
Book came as described, in good condition, and was shipped fast. Very satisfied, would definately purchase from this seller again.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Handle with Care. Nov. 2 2010
All her books end in a weird way, but this "end" was so horrible and unnecessary that I will never read one of her books again!!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not impressed Dec 21 2009
By Fiery
I have read a lot of Jodi Picoult's books and although I have found some a bit longwinded and haven't enjoyed all of them equally I was excited to read this book. There were several things that annoyed me while reading this. I didn't like the recipes thrown in before each chapter, I skipped them. There were a lot of ridiculous analogies and I didn't enjoy the writing style from time to time. The phrase "catch-22" was overused. But the worst part of the book is the ending. I HATED the ending.
I don't mind sad endings, but this ending didn't make me sad for the characters, it only made me sad for having wasted my time reading this book. Everything the characters went through seemed so pointless at the end. And it was so quick and sudden too! I had to check three times to convince myself that it was really the end. I was almost expecting another chapter where the author said.. just kidding, here's how it really ended. I would recommend other books by this author to my friends but I would not recommend this particular book to anyone.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A little slow to begin... May 2 2009
I enjoyed this latest book from Jodi Picoult, but I found it a bit slow at times...I did finish it in two days though and I am not the fastest reader! I am very unhappy with how the book actually ended (no...I won't give it away) and I wish there had been a bit more resolution for the main character's sister. It did raise a lot of hot topics including abortion, right to life, pro-life, and of course "quality of life" for those with handicaps. A good read altogether and I will look forward to her next book.
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