What do you do when your six-year-old Jewish child starts spouting Biblical passages she could not possibly have heard before?
What should you do when she claims her imaginary friend is in fact God?
What do you do when she starts to perform miracles and her hands start to bleed uncontrollably, almost as if she had stigmata?
Jodi Picoult‘s Keeping Faith tells the story of a mother going through a bitter divorce who needs to find an answer to all of these impossible questions. Mariah’s daughter has become a national spectacle overnight and their house has been bombarded with press and believers, all wanting a piece of her little girl Faith.
And her soon-to-be ex-husband is blaming Mariah and is using her troubled past against her.
Will she be able to keep Faith? Should she keep Faith? Is this Mariah’s fault? What is the truth?
I had never read a Jodi Picoult book before and grabbed this one at random at the library without even reading the cover. When I did, all I thought was, ‘oh dear, this will be weird and soppy’. Despite friends of mine insisting that Picoult is amazing, I had avoided reading her books because My Sister’s Keeper made me cry so hard my nose was red-raw for three days.
Keeping Faith is a weird story, considering it is about a modern occurrence of stigmata, and it is a tear-jerker, but this is a very well-written book and it keeps you guessing. Once I got past the first chapter I was hooked.
Picoult tackles the controversial religious angle masterfully. This book definitely gets you thinking and there’s even a touch of romance for added entertainment value.
Since reading Keeping Faith I have learned that Picoult writes books almost exclusively about contentious subjects, for example exploring same-sex parenthood in her book Sing You Home. She deliberately sets out to tackle all the ‘what-if’ questions in life that society tends to shy away from. She is a really daring writer and her meticulous research shows through. So if like me you were putting off reading her books because you were too scared of the emotional upheaval, then jump on the bandwagon because you’re missing out! Just make sure to have some extra soft tissues to hand.
Sing You Home is next on my To Read list and I have a lot of catching up to do as Picoult has written 18 books. lifeintheblueridges blogger Amelia recommended I read The Pact, so I have to get my hands on a copy of that too!