[Reading] ➷ The Storyteller By Jodi Picoult – Horse-zine.co.uk

The Storyteller files The Storyteller, read online The Storyteller, free The Storyteller, free The Storyteller, The Storyteller e904759ec Some Stories Live ForeverSage Singer Is A Baker She Works Through The Night, Preparing The Day S Breads And Pastries, Trying To Escape A Reality Of Loneliness, Bad Memories, And The Shadow Of Her Mother S Death When Josef Weber, An Elderly Man In Sage S Grief Support Group, Begins Stopping By The Bakery, They Strike Up An Unlikely Friendship Despite Their Differences, They See In Each Other The Hidden Scars That Others Can T, And They Become CompanionsEverything Changes On The Day That Josef Confesses A Long Buried And Shameful Secret One That Nobody Else In Town Would Ever Suspect And Asks Sage For An Extraordinary Favor If She Says Yes, She Faces Not Only Moral Repercussions, But Potentially Legal Ones As Well With Her Own Identity Suddenly Challenged, And The Integrity Of The Closest Friend She S Ever Had Clouded, Sage Begins To Question The Assumptions And Expectations She S Made About Her Life And Her Family When Does A Moral Choice Become A Moral Imperative And Where Does One Draw The Line Between Punishment And Justice, Forgiveness And Mercy In This Searingly Honest Novel, Jodi Picoult Gracefully Explores The Lengths We Will Go In Order To Protect Our Families And To Keep The Past From Dictating The Future


10 thoughts on “The Storyteller

  1. says:

    Jodi Picoult has tackled yet another big issue forgiveness in The Storyteller, but as in all her books things are a little complicated than usual, and there s her wow didn t see that coming twist as well Sage Singer is a loner She works as a baker through the night, only befriending a few people, hardly ever talking to the customers, always staying behind the scenes in the store where she works She has terrible scars on her face from a frightful accident, something she s struggling to cope with psychologically as well as physically every day of her life But it doesn t stop her baking Throughout the book I could almost smell Sage s breads, the beautiful breads taught to her by her Jewish grandmother and desperately wanted to taste them Over time an unlikely friendship grows between her and an elderly customer in the store Joseph Weber And then, in a completely unexpected moment, Joseph asks Sage to kill him He can t live with the memories of what he s done in the past and tells her why he deserves to die His story and Sage s grandmother s story, a survivor of Auschwitz are confronting and shocking.You might think that this is just another book about the Holocaust, but it isn t It is a privilege to read it an honour to remember those whose lives were abruptly terminated in such terrible circumstances We must not forget them, and we must learn from the mistakes of history, even if this means we metaphorically gird our loins to read on, saddened and horrified and, yes, sickened at times So is it worth the angst, the reader pain Yes it is Of course it is.Woven through Jodi Picoult s book is a fable, as it were, of fiction imitating life or is it life imitating fiction It s told by Sage s grandmother, and the ending is both confronting and unusual It adds to the richness of the book, and it weaves the story of her grandmother and Joseph Weber together.This is not an easy book to read, simply from the subject matter And yet Jodi Picoult s arresting and easy style of writing means the book will keep you riveted and make you think in the end I wonder what I would have done Thank you Jodi Picoult, for making me think And remember.


  2. says:

    The Weapons an author has at her disposal are flawed There are words that feel shapeless and overused Love, for example I could write the word love a thousand times and it would mean a thousand different things to different readers What is the point of trying to put down on paper emotions that are too complex, too huge, too overwhelming to be confined by an alphabet Love isn t the only word that fails.Hate does, too.War.And hope Oh, yes, hope.So you see, this is why I never told my story.If you lived through it, you already know there are no words that will ever come close to describing it.And if you didn t, you will never understand

    Gosh, this book. THIS BOOK It was the ruination of me in a thousand, soul shattering ways It made me feel things as a reader that I didn t know I was even capable of feeling This is one of those books that seeps into your bones and slowly settles itself into your soul leaving a permanent imprint upon your heart

    Yet, as the above passage from the book describes, some ideas and emotions simply cannot be put into words I feel that this book is one of them It was an extraordinary feat, accomplished by Jodi Picoult Her talent is put on full blast in this novel I am eternally grateful that my dear friend pressed this book into my hands and said, you simply must read this Words. cannot convey the feelings I had upon turning the last page Nor are they adequate in describing the gratitude I felt for my friend that shared this masterpiece with me.I hope I did this novel justice through my review.


  3. says:

    Some spoilers but nothing major The first few chapters of The Storyteller introduce us to Sage Singer a twenty something baker who is struggling with scars both emotional and physical Following an accident that maimed half her face, Sage suffers from very low self esteem, lives and works like a recluse and settles for being some guy s mistress.Had I not read the blurb, I would have assumed that I was reading one of those chick lit stories where an insecure girl with too much emotional baggage meets a guy who loves her for who she is.400 pages later, that is EXACTLY what The Storyteller turned out to be.What a bummer.I m not saying that The Storyteller doesn t talk about the Holocaust or doesn t do justice to it In fact, the best parts are the flash backs from WW2 I ll give credit where it s deserved Jodi Picoult has researched the whole thing extremely well And yet, the Holocaust angle always felt secondary to me It did not get the attention it deserved Or rather, undue attention was given to trivial plot points.Take the baking, for example There is a ton of absolutely pointless information What Sage bakes Why she bakes How she bakes How gluten works How brioche is made Yadda yadda yadda.Another useless detail that is hard to ignore Sage s sisters are called Pepper and Saffron.There s nothing technically wrong with those names except that they serve no purpose in the book whatsoever and stick out like a sore thumb.All the side characters were unrealistic and absolutely weird, again, for no reason other than grabbing undue attention view spoiler Who the hell speaks only in Haiku What kind of nun or ex nun paints Jesus with the face of Bradley Cooper What is this, some Sophie Kinsella novel _ hide spoiler


  4. says:

    This book was ok I have read pretty much everything Picoult has written, and I m also a massive history buff, so I looked to this book with very high hopes.Don t get me wrong, I liked this book for reasons outlined by many of the other reviewers on this site So for something a little different, I thought I would provide a few suggestions I would have made if I was Picoult s editor.This is because I ve started to notice in the last few books there are gaping continuity errors that reveal bigger editing problems This isn t surprising as Picoult releases a book a year on a specific date, and this deadline must be met, and who would argue with a best selling author Things I would say if I was Picoult s editor 1 Go read Markus Zusack s The Book Thief The Holocaust is a social scar that can go some way to healing, but should not be allowed to be covered up like Minka s long sleeves But Holocaust stories need to either be meticulously researched or you get people complaining about historical errors or it has to be absolutely emotionally honest, which is why I suggest Zusack.This is because he is able to communicate the fear, uncertainty, moral reactions and other emotions his characters feel going through the events of the Second World War but the key difference is that he does this by showing, not telling, the reader what his characters are feeling It s actually quite common in your work to read passages where characters just tell the reader what they feel rather than allowing the reader to interpret this through other means Trust the reader, they re smart.2 Characters are very importantDon t even get me started on the name choices and awful character quirks a guy who speaks solely in Haiku unimpeded by having to mentally count syllables or a fist to the face Please Many of the characters needed to them This is something that kind of underpins a lot of my other suggestions but for example, if Leo had experienced the effects of bullying either victim, witness or perpetrator at school or at home this would have been a lot engaging and explained his choice of career Why would a nun leave a convent and then start a bakery Nobody should be an extra and while you don t need to have a total backstory for every single character, even the central characters need meat on their bones.3 When you start something, keep it going or just save it for another storyThere are a lot of ideas and plot opportunities go nowhere Two examples are the grief counseling support group and the Jesus loaf that attracts thousands of pilgrims to the bakery They just sort of.stop Right at the very end Sage says something to the effect of Oh, the therapy group, remember, I used to do that I haven t been for a while, but despite the possibility of self harm nobody s thought to check up on me I assumed these would play a much bigger role in the story, but obviously not.4 Sage s sisters Rosemary and Thyme Sorry, Salt n Pepper What Xanthum Gum and Baking Soda Again, apart from the ridiculousness of the names, you have to either make them go the full Regan and Goneral there was the perfect opportunity for them to openly and loudly reminisce about their parents funeral later in the book or make them forgiving towards the end.Instead, you tell us they re mean and blame Sage for their parents death but once they find out she has a man, she s suddenly okay with them and with you it seems Because grief, moral quandaries and self consciousness about facial scars are suddenly fine with some good old horizontal work 5 Religious faith is than eating some things and doing certain stuff when someone diesReligion is present throughout this story, but faith is noticeably absent How would a teenage girl, incarcerated and facing death because of the world has turned against her religious faith, make peace with a God and a society that put her in this situation 6 Out of the rich smorgasbord of European and Jewish mythologies including death eaters, Golems, soul stealers and shape shifters, you had to go the full Twilight with the Ania and Alecks story, didn t you This is not the story a 1930 40s teenager facing the total and complete end of the world would write.This is the story a modern teenager who, like, is totally facing the end of the world because Mom says I m not allowed to check my status until I ve started my homework and she made peanut butter cookies when she knows choc chip are my favouritewould write.7 Let s just tear up these last five pages, shall we In Keeping Faith the whole book was driven by the question of whether the little girl really was experiencing messianic abilities such as stigmata or if she was faking it all along.The ending was ambiguous, and it was wonderful Book clubs all over the world talked late into the night and opened yet another bottle discussing this It s made people go back and re read the book It made the book amazing and memorable.Likewise, this book was driven by two questions One was whether Sage would do what Josef asks and ending on her arrival at his house would have been fine She has still gone through character development and thoroughly explored the consequences of her actions It s fine to fade to black there.The second driving question was how both good and evil could co exist in the same person Morally ambiguous characters are interesting and cool it s why Game of Thrones is so popular Well, that and boobs Lots of boobs So this is not just why the ending made me very disappointed in you, young lady, but it s also why I think some of the other characters didn t feel very realistic They were too good Why couldn t Leo do something that would compromise his burgeoning relationship with Sage Why couldn t Minka do something that would get someone else in trouble in the camp but benefit herself or her friend What if Minka s father had done something bad And this would incorporate the concept of the Storyteller into the book thoroughly the stories we tell ourselves to justify our actions What stories does Sage tell herself to make it okay to knowingly sleep with a married man What stories does Minka tell herself to assuage some of the guilt of being the survivor So there you are, Jodi, take those suggestions away and work on your manuscript it should turn out much better now.


  5. says:

    Jodi Picoult is one of my adopted authors This means I enjoy her books and want to share them with others so I donate the cost of each to our library I get to read the book first, allowing the library, the community and myself to reap the benefits It s definitely a win win deal I have not loved all of Picoult s books but have always respected the determination and marketing savvy she has shown since she began her career So what did I think of her latest The Storyteller is told in much the same way as many of Picoult s stories, using narrator viewpoint to lay it out Sometimes this works for me and sometimes not This time her formula worked and I was thoroughly engrossed from page one right through to the end The Storyteller is one of those books that is extremely hard to talk about without spoilers This alone makes it a good pick for book discussions Picoult has taken what could have been one amongst the many holocaust fiction historicals and made it her own She did borrow from other works to put moral issues under the microscope, most notably, The Sunflower On the Possibilities and Limits of Forgiveness by Simon Wiesenthal, in which a Nazi soldier seeks forgiveness Sage Singer grandmother, Minka, is a holocaust survivor though Sage knows little of her story When Sage grieves the loss of her mother in a bereavement group she meets and becomes friends with an elderly man with his own deep secrets He asks Sage to kill him but only after she forgives him for something he will reveal Though a primary theme twists love, hate, and forgiveness every which way, there are other stories to hear Somehow Picoult manages to even weave in a vampire tale and make it meaningful.I have not enjoyed a book by Picoult as much as this in some time The Storyteller reminds me why I started following her career to begin with She has such a way with words taking the ordinary and making them sing The one thing I wish she wouldn t do, she did and this takes some of my pleasure away I can t tell you what as it is one of those spoilers I hope Jodi Picoult decides to write in the historical fiction genre rather than pulled from the headlines as I think she shines here I ve read some great reviews of this book Read a few and see what you think.


  6. says:

    Over the past year I have made it a point to focus on trimming the books on my to read list, giving me little wiggle room for much else When a friend on the moderating team of retro chapter chicks here on goodreads mentioned wanted to read The Storyteller to finally get it off of her to read list, I said that I would join her With family joining me over a holiday weekend, The Storyteller would be a perfect book, one that does not require much attention on my part and would still be enjoyable What I did not know was that The Storyteller may be chick lit on the surface but multilayered and a book that reads in than black and white.Sage Singer is twenty five years old, is in the throes of an affair with a married man, is a master baker, and bares the reminder of her mother s death three years earlier from a scar running up and down her face Sage thinks she is an ugly duckling, she is an atheist, her sisters Pepper and Saffron blame her for her mother s death, and she took the baking job so that she would be hidden from the small town community in which she lives Besides the comfort that baking gives her, Sage s only console is in the form of a grief support group that she attends each week It is there that she meets nonagenarian Josef Weber, who plays the role of her town s favorite grandfather.In their grieving, Sage and Josef become the least likely of friends They play chess together on Josef s handcrafted set Josef falls for Sage s baking and Sage falls for Josef s dog The two become comfortable enough that Josef entrusts Sage with a secret that he is a former SS member of the Nazi party and has been living in hiding for the last seventy years Because she is a Jew, Josef wants Sage to assist him in dying To Sage, this is complicated, not just because to her murder means crime and prison time but because her beloved grandmother Minka Lewin is a holocaust survivor To side with Josef would mean to betray Minka yet to kill a Nazi would mean to obliterate another bad guy from the face of this earth.True to Picoult s style, she introduces Department of Justice employee Leo Stein, who is Jewish, a Nazi hunter, and also falls in love with Sage baggage in all Together Sage and Leo get Minka to tell her story, to see if Josef really is who he says he is Being that Leo hunts Nazis for a living, he brings another perspective that was already beginning to be read in gray rather than black and white Together with Sage, Leo coaxes Minka to tell her tale in the hopes of bringing one Nazi to justice Readers find out that Minka Lewin was a typical teenaged Jewish girl living in Poland She loved writing and together with her best friend Dariya dreamed of living in London and writing for a magazine Minka worked after school where she happened to excel at German at her father s bakery where he would bake a special roll just for her that had cinnamon and chocolate inside Minka uses her father s profession as background to construct a novel about an upior, a Polish mythical creature, that she has yet to complete when the Nazis come to power.Minka finds herself in Auschwitz Her knowledge of German land her in choice jobs including as secretary for the treasurer of the camp We find out that he is actually a good person and had no choice but to serve his country or he would have disappeared It is Minka s tale that saves her life as this SS officer wills her to write ten pages a night, as he is captivated by this story Because of his own love for literature, Minka s life is spared Yet her story of the baker s daughter, the upior, and people having the potential to love and hate does not have an ending as a story within a story, the upior s story is not written in black and white and it is up to the reader to create their own ending.The Storyteller is the second of Jodi Picoult s books that I have read While not the best of literature, her novels feature multifaceted current events issues that are sure to generate much discussion In complex characters Sage, Josef, Minka, and to a certain extent, Leo, readers are treated to a complex web of humans and the potential for each person to love and to hate How they choose to act on these emotions and impulses is up to each person to decide As with Small Great Things, the other of Picoult s novels that I have read, The Story Teller had not been on my radar prior to reading it, yet I was treated to the type of multilayered novel taking place across two distinct eras that I am apt to enjoy Perhaps this is a sign that I should not wait for a friend to be reading a Jodi Picoult novel to be moved to read one myself The Storyteller ended up being a compelling read, and one that I am glad to have joined in on.4 stars


  7. says:

    Jodi Picoult is an author who constantly challenges herself and now has undertaken the events of WW2 to segue her usual bone chilling plots and make an amalgam of sorts.The names of the characters in books generally are not only necessary, but they are also revelatory Sage is a young woman who has a troubled past and carries enough baggage to qualify as an alcoholic Only she doesn t.I liked the main characters One bonus fact is that there are no overwhelming flashbacks in this book Jodi Picoult uses her unique writing style to weave a persistent and apprehending magic, intuiting that there are many books in the pipeline.


  8. says:

    So, to be honest I have been so inundated with research articles, that my free time reading choices have been, well, light I have been taking on really easy reads due to the fact that my brain hurts.I thought, being Jodi Piccoult and all, that this book would fit into that category, however I was pleasantly surprised This book was not only extremely well written, but thought provoking and moving I never considered a book that took various perspectives of the Holocaust, well because I only believed there was one perspective that mattered or that was worth discussing In this book the main character Sage, whose grandmother is a survivor, is shocked to learn that an older man much respected in the community is was a Nazi In her effort to deport and charge Josef, she becomes his confidant as he confesses the sins of his past, and those of his brother Absolutely worth the read, almost gave it 5 stars


  9. says:

    I do not read many of Jodi Picoult s books, mainly because a lot of them do not really appeal to me I bought this book mainly because of the high ratings it was recieving on here All i have to say is wow I loved this book, at times i had to put it down to clear my head of the horrors i was reading No matter how many books i have read, True or fiction based The story of what happened to the Jews during the holocaust never fails to bring me to tears.Also reading the story from a young German boy s point of view growing up in Germany during war times and the Hitler Youth and becoming a man and SS Officer I was not suprised by the twist at the end, infact i cottoned on to this quiet early on Saying this it did not take away anything in the story that was unfolding This book will stay with me for a while and will recommend it to friends alike.


  10. says:

    Damn.I don t curse When I finished The Storyteller, I couldn t craft a coherent sentence I just sat and thought to myself damn.Sage Singer bakes bread It s therapy for her, in addition to the grief support group she attends after losing her mother in a car crash One day she befriends Josef Weber, a fellow support group goer and an elderly man who is a cherished member of their small town community Sage soon realizes that Josef doesn t just want her bread he wants her to kill him She learns that Josef has committed a terrible crime against humanity and that someone in her own family has suffered at the hands of the Nazis With this connection in mind Sage struggles to make the right choice Is it her to duty to deliver him from his wicked past, or would she bringing herself down to his level by doing so Why is it so hard to find out what s right, when faced with someone who s done so much wrong Jodi Picoult is a master storyteller For me, the most salient part of The Storyteller was when Minka, Sage s grandmother, shared her story about surviving Auschwitz and the other horrors she endured during the Holocaust Picoult s writing is so welcoming, beautiful, and piercing that you feel your heart break into another piece every time you flip a page There s no doubt that what happened to the Jews was horrifying and a testament to the monstrous side of mankind, but when you read Picoult s work, you don t just think wow, this is horrible you feel it, and you remember it, and you resolve that such crimes should never be allowed to happen again.I feel like a lot of the criticism Picoult receives from the literary community stems from the argument that she takes controversial topics and uses repetitive plot structures to exploit them and sell bestsellers I also feel that The Storyteller is the perfect book to counter that argument, because even though Picoult does use a somewhat similar formula in her novels family issues, court cases, etc she is in no way exploitative, especially with this book Like she does in her other novels, in The Storyteller she takes difficult topics like forgiveness, trauma, and justice, and makes you feel every blow through her three dimensional characters From Sage s scar induced reticence to Josef s incisive inner turmoil, I rode a gamut of emotions expansive enough to cover an ocean The Storyteller is Picoult at her prime She puts a human face on the Holocaust, a tragic, beastly, and horrendous event She deftly delves into the human psyche and makes you think about what it means to be a survivor, a storyteller, a human review cross posted on my blog, the quiet voice.


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