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House Rules | [Jodi Picoult]

House Rules

One of America’s most popular authors, Jodi Picoult has earned a reputation for crafting riveting, topical fiction. In House Rules she examines how being different can have dire consequences. Teenager Jacob Hunt has Asperger’s syndrome. A forensic science wizard, he follows his scanner to show up at crime scenes and give law enforcement officials his advice.
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Publisher's Summary

They tell me I'm lucky to have a son who's so verbal, who is blisteringly intelligent, who can take apart the broken microwave and have it working again an hour later. They think there is no greater hell than having a son who is locked in his own world, unaware that there's a wider one to explore. But try having a son who is locked in his own world, and still wants to make a connection. A son who tries to be like everyone else, but truly doesn't know how.

Jacob Hunt is a teenage boy with Asperger's syndrome. He's hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, and like many kids with AS, Jacob has a special focus on one subject -- in his case, forensic analysis. He's always showing up at crime scenes, thanks to the police scanner he keeps in his room, and telling the cops what they need to do...and he's usually right. But then his town is rocked by a terrible murder and, for a change, the police come to Jacob with questions. All of the hallmark behaviors of Asperger's - not looking someone in the eye, stimulatory tics and twitches, flat affect - can look a lot like guilt to law enforcement personnel. Suddenly, Jacob and his family, who only want to fit in, feel the spotlight shining directly on them. For his mother, Emma, it's a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it's another indication of why nothing is normal because of Jacob. And over this small family the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?

Emotionally powerful from beginning to end, House Rules looks at what it means to be different in our society, how autism affects a family, and how our legal system works well for people who communicate a certain way - and fails those who don't.

©2010 Jodi Picoult (P)2010 Recorded Books, LLC

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (3587 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Diana VAUCLUSE, Australia 04-01-10
    Diana VAUCLUSE, Australia 04-01-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "House Rules"

    This is a lovely story and very informative about Autism and Aspergers however one of the narrators speaks/reads so very fast it takes most of the enjoyment out of an audiobook. Oh what a shame this narrator can't just speak/read calmly - instead of being enjoyable it makes the listener feel very stressed.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Cullen Cornelius, NC 03-30-10
    Mary Cullen Cornelius, NC 03-30-10 Member Since 2011
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    "House Rules"

    Another good book by Jodi Picoult. I learned a lot about autism and aspergers syndrome. Great character study. Highly recommend the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie 03-30-10
    Julie 03-30-10 Member Since 2015
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    "well worth a read"

    Once I started this book I couldn't put it down. It's both a murder mystery and an amazing window into the life of a person with autism. I was a little disappointed with the ending but don't let this put you off reading it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzanne 03-27-10
    Suzanne 03-27-10
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    "Too good to read only once."

    Sorry I can only give it 5 stars. I am at the end now and will be starting it again right away.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Helen Austin Texas 03-27-10
    Helen Austin Texas 03-27-10 Member Since 2007

    Reading Raven

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    "A Voice to be Heard!"

    This book has great character development, dialogue and is very intriguing regarding Asbergers Syndrome. JP describes the family situation with great detail whereupon you really feel for the family members, especially Emma. Jacob's (main character with Asbergers) "voice" is moving and clearly expresses good research on the part of the author into this syndrome. The disppointment in the storyline is that these sensitive, Asberger savy people, never asked the right questions which seemed fairly odvious early on. Like other reviews I found this a bit disappointing at the end. The narration is really great, the changing actors talking in first person allow you to fully imagine the characters. Very good book, disappointing ending. Jacob's voice, the voice of Asbergers Syndrome, is a voice to be heard!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Courtney PasadenaVirgin Islands, U.S. 03-26-10
    Courtney PasadenaVirgin Islands, U.S. 03-26-10
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    "Educational, well-written....until the end"

    Wonderfully informative, with very lovable characters, but it felt like Picoult got bored and ended abruptly--too many strings were left hanging at the end. If the ending were slightly different, this book would be right up there with My Sister's Keeper (the book, not the movie). Still worth it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terri 03-25-10
    Terri 03-25-10 Member Since 2014
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    "Not the Picoult ending/twist I wanted"

    I LOVE this author and this was a good listen (particularly on the issue of autism and families dealing with it)...but was disappointed for one thing....I knew what had happened SOOO early on and I kept waiting for what I thought would be the typical Picoult kick you in the teeth unexpected ending twist...nothing. She ended this book the way the movie My Sister's Keeper RUINED Picoult's real (jaw dropping) ending.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Rock Hill, SC, United States 03-25-10
    Susan Rock Hill, SC, United States 03-25-10
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    "Almost perfect"

    I work within a school system and right now, I am constantly working with children on the spectrum. I thought this was a great way of showing people what it's like to have Asperger's, be the mother of someone with Asperger's and the brother of someone with Asperger's.

    Some parts really amazed me. When the policeman took Jacob in for questioning I immediately thought "CIVIL SUIT". But I realized that people who don't work with it everyday really may not understand it and agree that it's a disability.

    I loved the story and I couldn't wait to get to my car and listen. I got a little annoyed at the constant questioning of Jacob yet not listening to what he's really saying. For people who constantly talk about him being literal and never lying, I couldn't understand why they didn't state questions so that he would answer them the way they wanted.

    It was a good book. Good twist (as always) at the end. Really enjoyed it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tamara Mcfarland 03-22-10
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    "Decent book, poor ending"

    This book really drew me in and I enjoyed it quite a lot until the end, which struck me as incredibly predictable, and left me with many unanswered questions. Some of the characters' behavior also did not seem plausible to me, which I found annoying.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Cincinnati,OH 03-20-10
    Carol Cincinnati,OH 03-20-10 Member Since 2007
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    "Excellent"

    One of Picoult's best. Great representation of the effects on each family member in the lives of families dealing with disabilities.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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