Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult | Book ReviewLeaving Time by Jodi Picoult
Also by this author: My Sister\'s Keeper
Published by Hodder & Stoughton on 2014-10-14
Genres: Fiction, General
Pages: 464
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

Jenna Metcalf was with her mother the night she disappeared in tragic and mysterious circumstances, but she remembers nothing. Over ten years have passed, and still Jenna reads and rereads her mother's journals, hoping to find some clue hidden there, in the meticulous recording of her scientific research with elephants. Desperate for answers, Jenna uses all her savings to recruit the aid of a private detective - and a psychic. Jenna knows her mother loved her. She knows she would not leave her. And she will not rest until she finds out what happened that night. In her most gripping mystery since House Rules, Jodi Picoult brings us a powerful story of a young girl's determination to uncover the truth, however shocking and life-changing it might be.

If there is one bookish thing you should know about me, it’s that I’m a long-time Jodi Picoult fan. I remember walking through my middle school library and seeing My Sister’s Keeper on a shelf. For whatever reason, I was intrigued and picked it up. Thus began my obsession.

Naturally, when I decied I was going to go to BEA, I made it a number one pirority to get Leaving Time and meet Jodi Picoult. I used to go to my local indie bookstore and pay the full 36 dollars to buy her new releases with my money from working at Burger King. That is how much I love her novels. Anyways, I waited in Jodi’s signing line for an hour and a half and got to meet her and get the ARC signed. I told her that I’d been a huge fan since middle school and she said that I made her feel old! I’m sorry! 🙂


In true Jodi fashion, the chapters are split up by different character narratives. This is probably my favorite setup for a novel, I love seeing why characters act the way they do. It also helps to build a connection to the novel.

Jenna: Jenna is a girl whose mother disappeared after a tragic accident at the Elephant Sanctuary 10 years ago. She’s frustrated because everyone seems to have forgotten about her mom or given up looking for her. She lives with her grandma as her father is in a mental institution. Being an adolescent, she frequently sneaks out without telling her grandma in order to do what no one else will: look for her mother. I really liked Jenna. She gives everyone the benefit of the doubt and tries to see the good in them.She can be a bit stubborn at times, but what child isn’t?

Serenity: Serenity is a washed up psychic. She used to be famous for her abilities and had a very famous talk show. Due to her greediness to gain more viewers and fame, she lost her abilities. She now spends days reading people based on their tone of voice, body language, etc. Serenity does not like children and does not want to work with Jenna when she stumbles into her apartment one day. One thing leads to another and Serenity is indeed, working with a child. I found Serenity extremely interesting. At first, I was really skeptical. I don’t really believe in psychic abilities and I was rolling my eyes a bit during her chapters. However, Jodi is great at what she does and I ending up loving Serenity! She’s great.

Virgil: Virgil is another wash-out. He used to be a big time detective but now all he does is private investigating. He was one of the detectives assigned to Alice’s (Jenna’s mom) missing person case 10 years ago. He holds a lot of guilt inside regarding the whole Elephant sanctuary event and how the police department handled it. As a result, he joins the team to help get to the bottom of what happened to Alice. Virgil was a bit depressing at times, he seemed to have it all when he was working at the police department and it’s hard to understand why he would quit. Again, his story really starts to develop as the story went on and I found myself caring for him too.

Each character is written wonderfully with so much depth and personality, I loved it.

On another note, it was awesome to learn so much about elephants. I didn’t really have an interest in them before reading this but now I’m fascinated and would love to do some more research about them. I had no idea how similiar their consciousness is to humans. How they grieve and have memories just as we do.

The ending was perfect and I couldn’t have asked for a better novel. Jodi Picoult is better than ever. I would place Leaving Time as one of my top 10 favorite books of all time, it’s that good. If you like quirky, fleshed-out characters, an engrossing mystery, and beautiful writing, this is the novel for you. Preorder it now, you will not regret it.


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Cassie is a 24 year old working full-time in the marketing industry. In her spare time she likes to play video games, read books, exercise, and cuddle with her cat.

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About Cassie Conant

Cassie is a 24 year old working full-time in the marketing industry. In her spare time she likes to play video games, read books, exercise, and cuddle with her cat.


  1. I knew I should have picked up all the Jodi Picoult’s books I saw at the sale Friday. *sighs* You are dedicated! $36 for one book? I love books, but I don’t think I’d ever pay $36 for one. Lol! Or maybe I would.

    This sounds like a really good book! I’ve only read My Sister’s Keeper, but for the majority of the part, I liked it a lot. Multiple viewpoints are my favorite in novels. I love seeing everyone else’s perspective on the situation.

  2. Excellent review, Cassie. I adored My Sister’s Keeper but I haven’t read many others since Nineteen Minutes–that was so disturbing to me. But this one sounds great. I’m glad you got to meet one of your favorite authors, and I’m sure she appreciates you fangirling her! 😉