AUTHOR: linda TITLE: Just read: Vanishing Acts, by Jodi Picoult DATE: 8:38:00 PM ----- BODY:
Picoult tells the lively story of Delia Hopkins, a woman leading a charmed life who suddenly becomes aware she was kidnapped and abused as a child. Now searching for truth, Delia's journey is described in chapter-by-chapter shifts from the perspective of one main character to the next, to reveal a truth that's outside everywhere else she'd been looking.

This authentic progression from one moment to the next, and from one place to another during the weeks her father is collected, put in custody, and stands trial, are more defining of each of these lives than where each character came from, who they belong to, what they wished for, and what they claim to have lost.

The author's parallels of character with action/situation are beautifully woven into the intense bare backdrop of the desert: the father's hobby of smoke and mirrors comes to save his life; the daughter's search-and-rescue profession she comes to be employ
on herself; the slippery-slope of loving an alcoholic spouse remains forever slippery; and a parent's instinct clashes with the letter of the law, and the truths of others. An excellent read.

"Let me tell you what happens when you cook down the syryp of loss over the open fire of sorrow. It solidifies into something else. Not grief, like you'd expect, or even regret. No, it gets thick as paste, black as ash; yet it isn't until you dip a finger in and feel that sharp taste dissolving on your tounge that you realize this is anger in its purest form, unrefined; a substance to be weighed and measured and spread."

"There is a reason the word belonging has a synonym for want at its center; it is the human condition."