"Where There's Smoke": Best-selling author Jodi Picoult is a masterful storyteller, who "writes with a fine touch, a sharp eye for detail, and a firm grasp of the delicacy and complexity of human relationships" (The Boston Globe). Now, in this original short story, Picoult introduces Serenity Jones, one of the fascinating characters from her eagerly awaited new novel, Leaving Time.
Even as a child, Serenity Jones knew she possessed unusual psychic gifts. Now, decades later, she’s an acclaimed medium and host of her own widely viewed TV show, where she delivers messages to the living from loved ones who have passed. Lately, though, her efforts to boost ratings and garner fame have compromised her clairvoyant instincts. When Serenity books a young war widow to appear as a guest, the episode quickly unravels, stirring up a troubling controversy. And as she tries to undo the damage - to both her reputation and her show - Serenity finds that pride comes at a high price.
Larger than Life: A gripping and beautifully written novella. Set in the wilds of Africa, Larger than Life introduces Alice, the unforgettable character at the center of Picoult's anticipated new novel, Leaving Time.
A researcher studying memory in elephants, Alice is fascinated by the bonds between mother and calf - the mother’s powerful protective instincts and her newborn’s unwavering loyalty. Living on a game reserve in Botswana, Alice is able to view the animals in their natural habitat - while following an important rule: She must only observe and never interfere. Then she finds an orphaned young elephant in the bush and cannot bear to leave the helpless baby behind. Thinking back on her own childhood, and on her shifting relationship with her mother, Alice risks her career to care for the calf. Yet what she comes to understand is the depth of a parent’s love.
©2014 Jodi Picoult (P)2014 Random House Audio
"Where There's Smoke" is an situational expansion in the life of Serenity, a proferssional psychic that you meet in the novel "Leaving Time" by Jodi Picoult.
You can read it before or after the novel.. there are no spoilers, and this story can stand alone. Reading it after might be the best choice, only because the character Serenity is very strong in the novel, and you will enjoy knowing her in entirety prior to reading this short story.
Whether you read it before or after, don't cheat yourself by missing the novel. It would be my nomination for Audible's book of the year in fiction. Until reading "Leaving Time," if anyone had ever told me that I would have said that about one of Jodi Picoult's novels, I would have said they were crazy.
I listen to audible while I run or walk the dog. I made it through 15 minutes of listening and tripped 5 times as the reader droned on to the point that I lost my pace and my mind.
Not the best choice .. Guess I'll skip this book!!!
Was very happily surprised about these 2 short stories with Serenity and Alice from Leaving Time. Narrated by the same actresses.
Good short stories, Linda wanted them to be longer but was still worth listening to. Probably wouldn't do short stories next time though
Ms picoult takes you deep into each character and gives her readers a topical education like no other author. where there's smoke left me wanting more! I didn't want it to end! Larger than life gave me a touching, informative, factually accurate story about elephant's social behavior. Loved it too.
These two short stories are based off two characters from Jodi picoults book "leaving time". If you have read one you may not care to read the other but I enjoyed both characters so much it didn't matter to me.
I have read many books by Jodi Piccoult and the disappointment with this story is the potential that it had but didn't live up to. It begins with a story that captivates you and then cuts off with no ending and then starts another story which is just as good but again- there is not a good wrap-up. It seems like it was written to quickly with a sloppy ending. definitely not her best work.
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