The Memory Keeper's Daughter
by Kim Edwards starts on a snowy night in 1964 when a doctor delivers his own twins and discovers that one of them has been born with Downs Syndrome. In a hasty decision, he gives the daughter to a nurse to take to an institution and tells his wife the baby died. The nurse raises the daughter as her own. The Memory Keeper's Daughter
moves through the years, showing how one decision affected every part of two families' lives.
The Memory Keeper's Daughter is like Jodi Picoult's books in a few ways -- it is told from several perspectives, it raises ethical issues, and it is a fast paced page turner.
Angry Housewives Eating Bons Bons
by Lorna Landvik is the story of five women in a book club in Minnesota from 1968 to 1998. These "angry housewives" do much more than eat bon bons. They support each other through good and bad, finding a lifeline in their friendships.
Lorna Landvik, like Jodi Picoult, writes Angry Housewives Eating Bons Bons from several different perspectives, providing more insight into all sides of the characters' lives and struggles.
Happiness Sold Separately
by Lolly Winston starts with Elinor discovering that her husband is committing adultery. They have grown apart through their struggle with infertility and their marriage is in serious trouble. The book takes you through their attempt to save their marriage.
Happiness Sold Separately is like a Jodi Picoult book in a way that may or may not appeal to you -- it is sadly realistic. Whenever I read Picoult, I can't put the books down even though I think they are depressing. Similarly, Happiness Sold Separately is a page turner with no easy answers.
Avery Academy, a small Vermont boarding school, seems like an idyllic community, but that illusion comes to an abrupt end when a video is posted online showing a sexual encounter between three male seniors and one female freshman. Anita Shreve tells Testimony
in alternating snippets of the testimony of each character.
Picoult fans will appreciate the ethical issues Anita Shreve raises and the skill in Shreve's writing style.
Delia is a strong woman in her seventies who has been married to a famous Senator who is repeatedly unfaithful for years. Meri is an insecure newlywed in her thirties who moves next door. Most of The Senator's Wife
takes place in little more than a year; however, flashbacks and the characters' reflections tell the story of these women's marriages, hopes and dreams over decades.
Jodi Picoult often writes about the struggles within marriages. In The Senator's Wife, Miller also shows a realistic picture of marriage -- difficult and redemptive.