*Mild Spoilers Ahead*
What is better than a rainy afternoon, a cup of tea and good book? A book that makes you cry, sometimes laugh and feel things you never thought you would, you will this experience this and more in Jodi Picoult’s, My Sisters Keeper. It has been a while since a book has made me cry (tell a lie, I did cry last Summer when I read Me Before You and After You by Jojo Moyes), but this makes you cry for completely different reasons. You are both happy for Kate, but also sad for her, Sara, Brian, Jesse, Campbell, Julia and most of all, Anna.
The book follows a series of characters and their journey to finding the truth of why Anna wants to be medically emancipated from her parents. We find out that she was genetically engineered to save her sister, Kate and we see that sometimes her parent’s, Sara and Brain who do not have it all together and put Kate before Jesse and Anna. Yet, Brain is beginning to see that maybe Anna is right, she should have a say in what happens to her. We see how both Anna and Jesse react to their parents and how the treat them in comparison to Kate. We also hear Julia’s voice, the person there to speak on Anna’s behalf and decide for the judge whether she thinks Anna has the mind capacity to make her own decisions regarding her health, but she has her own past to deal with when she comes face to face with the man that broke her, Campbell Alexander. Then we have Campbell Alexander, a big shot lawyer who for some reason takes on Anna’s case, against his better judgement. Finally, we hear Kate’s voice, the real reason behind all the fuss who just wants to be heard herself.
This novel has intrigue, mystery, some form of happiness and above all else, can pull on your heart strings but you cannot help but come back for more. It will leave you needing more than what there is.
As you come to the end you just want that happily ever after, where Kate lives cancer free, Sara and Brain sees all the children as equal and finally realise they are still madly in love with one another. Jesse sorts his life out and takes the straight and narrow path. Campbell and Julia get together and Anna, can live freely. However, like all good stories, heartache is around the corner and whilst most get a somewhat happy ending, we must imagine the rest of the story without one major character which is hard to comprehend.
Whilst I watched the film a few years back before reading the book (I’m mad at myself too, don’t worry), I am glad I have had the chance to experience both as they are both great and cry-worthy in their own ways. Especially, their own alternative endings which part of me wishes the film makers kept to the original but another is somewhat glad they didn’t, but wishes they could have come up with a way where everyone gets their happily ever after, however, we know they were trying to stay true to real life. Whilst I make this book sound sad and horrible, to not read it would be a horrible mistake and you will be missing out on a great experience. Just make sure you have the tissues at the ready.
I think the final line, ‘I take her with me, wherever I go.’ sums the book up well as the underlying message is of course, one sister’s love for the other will save her.