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3.0 out of 5 starsSalem Falls/ disappointing
Reviewed in the United States on December 23, 2018
First I am a fan of Jodi Picoult, second I never write reviews.. I have to say the story line was very good I enjoyed everything about the subject and the characters, this could have been an excellent book however there were many errors in the timelines such as the death of her daughter, was it 10 years as stated in several places and suggested by the dates on the tombstone or 7 years as she stated on the stand the dates were confusing and distracting, the characters were interesting and I wanted to know more about them I felt there stories were hurried and unfinished which was also aggravating, there was just so much unsaid or unfinished, especially the ending which left me feeling jipped...I mean are you kidding me with such a huge storyline no truths were ever really revealed, not to anyone who mattered and not in any way that mattered to the story itself! I don’t want to give spoilers but the last page while enough had been “unsaid” it was a good guess of this abuse it made me angry that it was just left to end on that note. Again I really wanted to like the story as it was a really good premise and I was kept interested but mostly because I kept waiting for it to all come together and it just never did it left me feeling cheated for all that it could have been....very disappointed
4.0 out of 5 starsAn intriguing mystery with a clever court case taking almost half the book
Reviewed in the United States on February 21, 2015
I've always enjoyed Picoult's novels. They are thought provoking and relevant to today's topical issues. This one had an extra interest for me as it has echoes of Arthur Miller's “The Crucible” which I remember teaching to a sixth form class some years ago. This one deals with Jack St Bride who has just been released from an 8 month sentence in jail as a result of a “plea” in spite of the fact that he was innocent of the crime he was accused of. A teenage student had said she'd had an affair with her popular teacher, a situation where many young girls fancy they are in love with. She kept a diary with her fantasies recorded, but when she realised that this would implicate her teacher in a criminal offense she admitted it was all just in her mind. However the damage was done and she was unable to retract. Jack seeks to move to a place where he was unknown and kept himself to himself, avoiding contact with women who might be able to lay a similar claim against him. However, in small town Salem, word gets out and the rumour of a preditor in their midst spreads wildly. In the town there are a group of teenage girls who fancy themselves as witches and practise magical rites. Add to this the desire to tempt fate . . . . . and here is a dramatic plot. About of third of the book covers the trial, and though I have always found the arguments put forward by prosecution and defense lawyers to be clever in the past, in this novel I felt it was rather tame and predictable. I enjoyed it never-the-less. A good read.
5.0 out of 5 starsLoved it. So glad I decided to pick it up.
Reviewed in the United States on June 15, 2016
Loved it. I have read several of Ms. Picoult's books and usually like them very much. Surprisingly, My Sister's Keeper had been one I didn't care for too much. It took me forever to get through it. Luckily there was a surprise at the end to reward me for my tenacity. Long story short, after that somewhat disappointing experience, I hesitantly picked up Salem Falls, but I'm happy to report, that it was one of my favorite books of hers so far. Very relatable characters, a gripping story (case). I spent many hours on a rainy Sunday reading this book, even my boyfriend said: You must like this one. I couldn't tear myself away.
This book by Picoult is a twist on the Salem Witch trials. It involves four young teenage girls who are involved with wicca, and are just learning to navigate in the world of adults; and when they don't get what they want from the new stranger in town they aim to show him what 'witches' in todays age can be capable of doing to someone. Jack has been accused of one false crime and after moving to Salem Falls, falling for the local waitress, and starting the threads of a new life he finds himself involved in a new scandal that might send him to jail for the rest of his natural life if he cannot convince the local populace or perhaps a jury to believe in his innocence.
Salem Falls explores the darker side of sexuality and lies that happen everyday in the lives of teenagers, adults and people around the world; have you ever wished someone ill and then heard they were in a car wreck and wondered just for a moment if your thought could have had some link to it? This book explores the possibilites of magic and how they are still active even in today's society. Salem Falls, opens your mind to looking closer and listening more to the people around you. People and events may not always be what they seem. The book was a pretty quick read; the characters were flatter for me than other Picoult novels but the storyline kept me reading. It was the plot of the book that I enjoyed more than anything. I would recommend it but I have other books by this author I've enjoyed more.
This was a typical Jodi Picoult novel. It is a fairly shocking topic. there is a difficult love affair . and a twist in the tail. it drew a lot of references to the crucible and the witch trials at salem . It did nothing for me, sadly . It was a book club choice but it did nothing for me . It did not bring anything new to the game.. If you like Jodi Picoult you will love this
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 6, 2015
I was surprised with myself with this book. I have read a few Jodi Picoult books and loved them all. This one took abit longer to get ibto. I was ready to give up. I found there were too many characters, or names at least, thrown in at the start and i found it tricky keeping up. After a few chapters i got used to everyone and before I knew it i was halfway through the book routing for possibly the wrong person! But then the end i was thinking it was gojng to be predictible. I was wrong. Up until the very last sentence. I actually sat still for a couple of minutes shocked. Did NOT see that ending. I think i should have but i was so so impressed. Not quite a 5 but very close. Its gripping, exciting and the characters are very likeable! Looking forward to reading more of Picoult !!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 4, 2017
I was so disappointed in this book. I have read several of the author's works and really enjoyed them. This one is drivel. Both Addie and Jack are highly irritating. The delves in to Jack's past are clumsy and serve nothing for the story. The witchcraft theme was ridiculous. My advice is to avoid this book and read another by the author.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 25, 2015
This is the third Jodi Picoult I've read - to be honest, after the second I was reluctant to pick up another (loved My Sister's Keeper, was disappointed with Plain Truth) but this was a really enjoyable book. The storyline deals with a young man twice accused of raping minors, but also considers the girls motives for making the accusations so that Picoult does what she does best in making you see there's rarely a black and white scenario, there's always shades of grey in between making right and wrong blurry. I also particularly enjoyed this book as a huge fan of New England, the landscape and community was drawn really well, and there is the obvious Salem witch trials history which is alluded to. Very enjoyable, lots of twists and turns, and some interesting characters.
4.0 out of 5 starsA good book, but not Jodi's best
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 12, 2013
I enjoyed Salem Falls like I enjoy all of Jodi Picoult's novels however, I felt a bit of the 'heart' was missing from this one. It was a good enough read but I found it never really gripped me and stopped me putting down the book. If this is your first Jodi or you're looking at others books I'd reccomend some of her other titles first - 19 Minutes, Plain Truth, Change of Heart, Picture Perfect, Handle with Care, House Rules, The Pact - these all have more of the Jodi style suspense and plot twists that keep you on the edge of your seat. But if you're a fan, then pick this one up too - it might be predictable but it's a reasonably moving read and we get a few characters brought in from other books with is fun!