The Critique Circle Public Library

Lone Wolf
by Jodi Picoult
Amazon rating
Critique Circle rating 
PublisherAtria/Emily Bestler Books
Release Date2012-02-28 (added to CC 16 Apr 2012)
Amazon Sales Rank66
A life hanging in the balance . . . a family torn apart. The #1 internationally bestselling author Jodi Picoult tells an unforgettable story about family secrets, love, and letting go.

In the wild, when a wolf knows its time is over, when it knows it is of no more use to its pack, it may sometimes choose to slip away. Dying apart from its family, it stays proud and true to its nature. Humans aren’t so lucky.

Luke Warren has spent his life researching wolves. He has written about them, studied their habits intensively, and even lived with them for extended periods of time. In many ways, Luke understands wolf dynamics better than those of his own family. His wife, Georgie, has left him, finally giving up on their lonely marriage. His son, Edward, twenty-four, fled six years ago, leaving behind a shattered relationship with his father. Edward understands that some things cannot be fixed, though memories of his domineering father still inflict pain. Then comes a frantic phone call: Luke has been gravely injured in a car accident with Edward’s younger sister, Cara.

Suddenly everything changes: Edward must return home to face the father he walked out on at age eighteen. He and Cara have to decide their father’s fate together. Though there’s no easy answer, questions abound: What secrets have Edward and his sister kept from each other? What hidden motives inform their need to let their father die . . . or to try to keep him alive? What would Luke himself want? How can any family member make such a decision in the face of guilt, pain, or both? And most importantly, to what extent have they all forgotten what a wolf never forgets: that each member of a pack needs the others, and that sometimes survival means sacrifice?

Another tour de force by Picoult, Lone Wolf brilliantly describes the nature of a family: the love, protection, and strength it can offer—and the price we might have to pay for those gifts. What happens when the hope that should sustain a family is the very thing tearing it apart?


Member Reviews
(20 Nov 2012)
Lone Wolf is a beautifully written novel. It was simple and straight to the heart. I admit it hit home for me because my mother was in a similar situation and my family had to make the same choice but besides that, Luke Warren's story was fascinating, a man living with wolves. I liked his son Edward, a lot, he often voiced my opinions on the whole of the events and his sister, Cara, while annoying and naive as any teenage girl would be, did at last make sense to me in the end. I would have felt like she did if my last encounter with a dying parent were such a negative one.
I haven't read a contemporary novel in a long time and now I remember why this is the genre I chose to start writing in, it tugs at the heartstrings and the character's are almost always so similar to you that you can't help but feel like this is your world, since it is technically your world, a real breathing one with heart breaks and disappointments. For Joe and the mother, I also sympathize with. It was a nice story overall. I didn't give it more stars because somewhere in the middle it lagged but boy was the wrap-up one not to be missed.
Also, the wolf pack narrative was very engaging and educational. I know a lot about wolves already through research and wild life documentaries but what you can never know and see or research is what you actually live day in and day out. How the pack functioned and how badly this man wanted to be one with them was saddening. I didn't always like Luke for abandoning his family and being an irresponsible father and husband but somehow I could understand his own internal dilemma. No ones perfect. There were your cliche moments here and there, but again, since my family went through a similar experience, I am a bit bias with the matter.
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