Title: The Tenth Circle
Author: Jodi Picoult
First published March 7, 2006
416 pages, Paperback
ISBN: 9780743496711 (ISBN10: 074349671X)
Nineteen-year-old Ellie never thought she’d be a mother, but when she becomes pregnant after a one-night stand, she makes the decision to keep the baby. Now, as a single mother, she’s doing her best to raise her daughter Willow.
But when Willow accuses her father of abuse, Ellie’s world is turned upside down. As she fights to protect her daughter and prove the truth, Ellie realizes that the people she thought she knew best may be hiding dangerous secrets.
With the help of a determined lawyer, Ellie must navigate the legal system and confront her own past to uncover the truth and keep her daughter safe.
About the Author
Meet Jodi Picoult, a bestselling author with 28 novels under her belt, including Wish You Were Here, Small Great Things, Leaving Time, and My Sister’s Keeper. She’s also co-authored two young adult novels with her daughter, Samantha van Leer, called Between the Lines and Off the Page.
When she’s not writing, Jodi calls New Hampshire home.
Coming soon is her latest novel, MAD HONEY, which she co-wrote with Jennifer Finney Boylan. You can find it in hardcover, ebook, and audio starting October 4, 2022.
To learn more about Jodi, visit her website or follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
Jodi Picoult’s The Tenth Circle is a novel that tackles a range of difficult and timely issues, from teenage angst to sexual assault, and does so with a nuanced and empathetic touch. Picoult has established herself as a master of the contemporary drama, and this novel is no exception.
Published in 2006, The Tenth Circle is a thought-provoking work that explores the many ways in which we navigate the complexities of human relationships. The novel tells the story of Trixie Stone, a fifteen-year-old girl who is struggling to cope with the loss of her boyfriend to suicide.
Trixie’s father, Daniel Stone, is a comic book artist who uses his work to grapple with his own feelings of inadequacy as a parent. When Trixie is sexually assaulted at a party, the family’s world is turned upside down as they try to come to terms with what has happened to their daughter.
The narrative is interwoven with segments from one of Daniel’s comic books, which explores the mythological concept of the Tenth Circle of Hell. One of the strengths of The Tenth Circle is its character development.
Picoult has a talent for creating richly layered, flawed, and relatable characters, and this novel is no exception. The Stone family feels like a real family, with their own set of quirks, flaws, and strengths.
The exploration of the ways in which each family member responds to the assault is particularly well-done. The novel’s pacing is also strong.
Picoult keeps the narrative moving forward at a steady clip, while also giving readers the space to reflect on the emotional weight of the story. The use of the comic book segments adds an extra layer of depth and interest to the story, and Picoult’s writing is clear and evocative throughout.
The themes of The Tenth Circle are particularly resonant in today’s cultural climate. The novel is a powerful examination of topics like teenage sexuality, rape culture, and the ways in which we process traumatic events.
The novel’s exploration of the complicated relationship between parent and child will also strike a chord with many readers. There are some minor flaws in The Tenth Circle.
Some readers may find the book’s inclusion of comic book mythology to be distractingly strange, and the ending is somewhat abrupt. However, these are minor issues in what is otherwise a truly excellent book.
Overall, The Tenth Circle is a compelling and thought-provoking read that will resonate with readers who appreciate complex characters and nuanced explorations of challenging subject matter. It is particularly well-suited to audiences who enjoy contemporary dramas or who are interested in exploring the many challenging issues facing young people today.
With its strong writing, engaging characters, and timely themes, The Tenth Circle is a book that is well worth your time. I give it a 4 out of 5 rating.