Sunday, March 15, 2009

Handle with Care by Jodi Picoult

From the publishers:
Every expectant parent will tell you that they don''t want a perfect baby, just a healthy one. Charlotte and Sean O''Keefe would have asked for a healthy baby, too, if they''d been given the choice. Instead, their lives are made up of sleepless nights, mounting bills, the pitying stares of "luckier" parents, and maybe worst of all, the what-ifs. What if their child had been born healthy? But it''s all worth it because Willow is, well, funny as it seems, perfect. She''s smart as a whip, on her way to being as pretty as her mother, kind, brave, and for a five-year-old an unexpectedly deep source of wisdom. Willow is Willow, in sickness and in health.

Everything changes, though, after a series of events forces Charlotte and her husband to confront the most serious what-ifs of all. What if Charlotte should have known earlier of Willow''s illness? What if things could have been different? What if their beloved Willow had never been born? To do Willow justice, Charlotte must ask herself these questions and one more. What constitutes a valuable life?

Emotionally riveting and profoundly moving, Handle with Care brings us into the heart of a family bound by an incredible burden, a desperate will to keep their ties from breaking, and, ultimately, a powerful capacity for love. Written with the grace and wisdom she''s become famous for, beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult offers us an unforgettable novel about the fragility of life and the lengths we will go to protect it.

My Review:
This book was quite compelling. It revolves around a young girl with Brittle Bone Syndrome. This girl breaks bones quite easily. Her parents are in the middle of a wrongful birth lawsuit. Essentially, they should have been informed beforehand that their daughter could potentially have this disease and if this was told to them they could have made the decision to abort their special needs child. As someone who has worked with children and adults with disabilities I found it very hard to agree with this kind of case. I found myself yelling at the mother wanting her to end her lawsuit. It becomes a fine line when you start questioning who has the right to live. It can be extremely difficult to raise a child with any kind of disability but they can bring so much joy to your life. I enjoyed reading this book but like I say it was at times really difficult and frustrating to read. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to hate or sympathize with the mother. The father also got so wrapped up in the trial that he forgets all about his other daughter. Overall I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

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