It wasn’t my intention to use this blog to share book reviews, but Jodi Picoult’s The Storyteller was impossible to put down.
It tells the story of the Holocaust from every perspective as the narrator switches from a perpetrator, a survivor and the survivor’s granddaughter. The characters came to life as I turned the pages and saw every scene in my mind’s eye as if it were a movie. The horror of humans being totally dehumanised and treated far worse than any person with a heart would treat animals made me gasp, and the courage of those German people who tried to show kindness brought tears to my eyes. While most of us know the history, reading about it from the perspectives of such life-like characters just left me in stunned silence as I contemplated what it would be like to suffer every loss it is possible for a human being to suffer – loss of family, friends, health, education, work, savings, home, clothes, jewellery, books and everything else they ever owned, dignity, identity, humanity… it’s just incomprehensible.
Jodi examines the paradox of good people doing evil deeds and evil people doing good deeds, questions what courage truly is and in typical Jodi style, adds a love story and a clever twist as the icing on the cake.
My favourite quotes from it are:
“Power isn’t doing something terrible to someone who’s weaker than you. It’s having the strength to do something terrible, and choosing not to.” Picoult, Jodi (2013-03-01). The Storyteller (pp. 133-134). . Kindle Edition.
“Inside each of us is a monster; inside each of us is a saint. The real question is which one we nurture the most, which one will smite the other.” Picoult, Jodi (2013-03-01). The Storyteller (p. 99). . Kindle Edition.
“Sometimes all it takes to become human again is someone who can see you that way, no matter how you present on the surface.” Picoult, Jodi (2013-03-01). The Storyteller (p. 335). . Kindle Edition.
The book gets top marks from me!
© Szilvia Virag 2013