So now, I am back again! I have finished reading the Storyteller by Jodi Piccoult. I have read two of Jodi Piccoult’s books–House Rules and Nineteen Minutes and I must say, this is one of her best books that I have read. So here is my review!
The Storyteller–Jodi Piccoult
Mourning the passing of her mother, Sage Singer decides to attend a grief support group. She doesn’t expect to start an unlikely friendship with an elderly man also attending. Josef Weber is a beloved, retired teacher and Little League coach. Together they attempt to heal.
But one day he asks Sage for a favor: to kill him. Shocked, Sage refuses but then he confesses his darkest and long-buried secret, one that irrevocably changes Sage’s worldview. She suddenly finds herself facing questions she never expected, such as what do you do when evil lives next door? Can someone who’s committed a truly heinous act ever atone for it with subsequent good behavior? Should you offer forgiveness to someone if you aren’t the party who was wronged? And most of all, if Sage even considers his request, is it murder or justice? The Storyteller explores these issues and more in this “profound and moving novel about secrets, lies, and how the power of stories can change the course of history” (Shelf Awareness).
So the topic Holocaust has always intrigued me. Storyteller is about a girl who befriends an old man she met at the grief group and the two form an unlikely friendship until the man tells her that he was a former SS Nazi soldier. Worst, the girl’s grandmother was a Holocaust survivor. So when he confesses to her, asking her to forgive him for the crimes he had committed including even killing him, can Sage actually forgive him let alone kill him?
So overall, her is my thoughts
- Jodi Piccoult has done tremendous research while writing this book. She herself had admitted that she had talked to many Holocaust survivors who had told her about their experiences as well as learning how to bake. The topic “Holocaust” is a sensitive issue where one must write in precaution. It’s one of the worst event that ever happened in history and to this day, still, Holocaust is the main topic in history.
- There are three main characters–Sage, Josef and Minka. Leo is more like a backdrop who is assisting in helping Sage to bring Josef to deportation after his confession. Sage to me was initially my least favorite character but later on in the book, she gets matured, concerned about her grandmother and overall, becomes confident in herself as she starts a relationship with Leo, who is working in Department of Justice
- My favorite character in this book is Minka–Jodi has tackled well writing the experiences of Holocaust using as a first person–it’s harrowing especially when writing details about worst conditions at the ghetto and Auschwitz. Minka is truly a brave heroine who went through many obstacles–losing her parents and sister and also her best friend, she witnessed many horrors during the war and including seen SS soldier Reiner Hartmann killing her best friend. Minka’s vivid description genuinely portrays the stories of real life Holocaust survivors, truly inspiring the generation.I also like Minka’s relationship with her father.
- Minka’s story has fascinated one of the SS soldiers, who happens to be the brother of notorious Reiner Hartmann. Because of her ability to speak German, Minka and this soldier grow an unlikely invisible bond where Franz later on wants to know what happens in the end.
- Last but not least is Josef Weber who claims that he is Reiner Hartmann. When you read his view about the atrocities and notorious crimes he had committed against the prisoners at the camp, you sometimes had to put the book down, unable to read it. But (spoiler alert) there is a strong twist towards the end when we find that Josef was actually Franz and not Reiner
Overall I give this book
Well written, more like a reality book with harrowing descriptions of the holocaust.
Stay tune for my next review!!