Sing You Home (2011) As surely as the cha-chung! of a Law & Order intro, the annual arrival of a new Jodi Picoult novel signals two things: torn-from-the-headlines social… 2011-03-01 Fiction Mystery and Thriller Atria
Book Review

Sing You Home (2011)

Jodi Picoult | TWO FOR THE MONEY Jodi Picoult's latest comes with a CD
TWO FOR THE MONEY Jodi Picoult's latest comes with a CD
EW's GRADE
B

Details Release Date: Mar 01, 2011; Writer: Jodi Picoult; Genres: Fiction, Mystery and Thriller; Publisher: Atria

As surely as the cha-chung! of a Law & Order intro, the annual arrival of a new Jodi Picoult novel signals two things: torn-from-the-headlines social issues — organ donation, date rape, school violence — and a tidy resolution by the final fade-out.

Sing You Home, her latest, offers a twofer, addressing both the rights of gay parents and those of the "pre-born," more commonly known as frozen embryos. It also comes with a CD of warbly original songs co-penned by the almost frighteningly prolific Picoult, as if to antagonize the underachievers among us. The disc does serve a narrative purpose: Each track corresponds to a chapter title in the story of Zoe, a Rhode Island music therapist desperate to have a baby but unable to carry to term. When that struggle finally rends her marriage to the taciturn Max, she finds post-divorce solace in a friend — who happens to be a woman.

Picoult's characters often come off less like true human beings than ideological stand-ins, and her conflicts can feel overly simplified. But Sing deftly personalizes the political, delivering a larger message of tolerance that's difficult to fault. B

Originally posted Feb 23, 2011 Published in issue #1144 Mar 04, 2011 Order article reprints