Wow! What a book.
Forgive my ignorance for not knowing the global landscape on abortion laws – this Wikipedia page helped show different laws and attitudes around the world.
What timing for this exceptional book. At a time where women's reproductive rights are going through a huge change (Ireland's referendum to repeal the 8th) and the US seeming het up about overturning Roe vs Wade (read here for what a overturning could automatically set off in respective US states).
Ms Picoult's highly-skilled storytelling is a wonder to behold. The story starts in a women's health centre, and a gunman has taken staff and patients hostage. The hostage negotiator discovers his own sister and daughter are amongst those held.
As the hostages struggle to stay alive, we hear the interwoven backgrounds and fateful journeys of how every character including the gunman made it to be present at the health centre that ill-fated day. The time lines and the characters stories are changed regularly, which could be confusing but offers detailed glimpse at each of their own respective histories.
The book was very engaging and I found myself trying to sneak another page wherever I could between my nightly bedtime reading. (In the queue at the bank, whilst being put on hold, waiting for the kettle to boil).
There is an excerpt from A Spark of Light on Jodi Picoult's website – get stuck in!
VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Thank you so much the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a complimentary electronic copy in return for an honest review.
The book starts at the death of the pope and the story describes the choosing of a new pope, through the traditional method of the conclave. The thriller is a work of art, with a multitude characters, and the diplomacy and duplicity involved to dictate who should get the top job. I found myself rooting for the protagonist the entire time. And between chapters I researched the history of conclaves. Robert Harris' research was detailed and rich, and this added to the story.
An absolute brilliant read.
This is my first Robert Harris novel, and I will endeavour to look for more of his novels in future.