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Insightful,
Informative,
Interesting

52 reviews

House Rules: A Novel
by Jodi Picoult

Published: 2010-03-02
Hardcover : 544 pages
68 members reading this now
35 clubs reading this now
0 members told 0 friends about this book.
62 members have read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 50 of 52 members
The astonishing new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult about a family torn apart by an accusation of murder.They tell me I'm lucky to have a son who's so verbal, who is blisteringly intelligent, who can take apart the broken microwave and have it working again an ...
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Introduction

(

The astonishing new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult about a family torn apart by an accusation of murder.

They tell me I'm lucky to have a son who's so verbal, who is blisteringly intelligent, who can take apart the broken microwave and have it working again an hour later. They think there is no greater hell than having a son who is locked in his own world, unaware that there's a wider one to explore. But try having a son who is locked in his own world, and still wants to make a connection. A son who tries to be like everyone else, but truly doesn't know how.

Jacob Hunt is a teenage boy with Asperger's syndrome. He's hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, and like many kids with AS, Jacob has a special focus on one subject -- in his case, forensic analysis. He's always showing up at crime scenes, thanks to the police scanner he keeps in his room, and telling the cops what they need to do...and he's usually right. But then his town is rocked by a terrible murder and, for a change, the police come to Jacob with questions. All of the hallmark behaviors of Asperger's -- not looking someone in the eye, stimulatory tics and twitches, flat affect -- can look a lot like guilt to law enforcement personnel. Suddenly, Jacob and his family, who only want to fit in, feel the spotlight shining directly on them. For his mother, Emma, it's a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it's another indication of why nothing is normal because of Jacob. And over this small family the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?

Emotionally powerful from beginning to end, House Rules looks at what it means to be different in our society, how autism affects a family, and how our legal system works well for people who communicate a certain way -- and fails those who don't.

Editorial Review

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Excerpt

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Discussion Questions

Suggested by Members

What do You think would have happened had Theo not went in where Jess was staying?Do you think Jacob would have had a argument about their words at restraunt?
by mariank (see profile) 07/23/13

autism, judicial system, parenting, divorce, siblings
by AshleyAsher (see profile) 03/17/11

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

No notes at this time.

Book Club Recommendations

Our Hostess served the color of the day foods.
by suemoros (see profile) 03/30/12
Great discussion about schools and their handling of children with special needs.

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
  "Dealing with Asperger's"by mariank (see profile) 07/23/13

What a full day means to a family member with Asperger's a form of Autism.The book was very informative and keep you trying to figure out what really happened.

 
  "Insightful"by teatime (see profile) 05/28/13

Wonderful writing and story. Everyone loved it except for the ending.

 
  "Unconventional mystery"by clpurser1972 (see profile) 05/21/13

This was my first Picoult read and I was quite impressed. I enjoyed hearing the story from different character views. She did a great job of blending a mystery into the story too. The ending kind of... (read more)

 
  "House Rules by Jodi Picoult"by bspourch (see profile) 08/28/12

Jodi Picoult fans loved this book; others not so much. Ten women attended our discussion, and the average rating was 3.6. The subject matter led to a good discussion, but everyone agreed that the book... (read more)

 
  "Good read!!"by NVialpando (see profile) 08/16/12

 
  "A thought-provoking read"by csinnett (see profile) 04/23/12

This book was not one I chose to read and not something that would ordinarily have piqued my interest; and for the first 75 pages (give or a take a few) I was not impressed. However, I quickly adapted... (read more)

 
  "House Rules"by jbpwood (see profile) 04/11/12

Good book although a little drawn out. It gave you realistic insight as to how a young adult with aspergers may think in an extreme case.

 
  "House Rules: A Novel"by suemoros (see profile) 03/30/12

This was an interesting look at the life of a family with a special needs child. sometimes in carring for the one with special needs we forget about the people around that person. They have needs also.... (read more)

 
  "House Rules"by DebbiJ (see profile) 03/29/12

Jodi Picoult is amazing. She tackles difficult subjects and presents so many viewpoints on the subject. All of her books are great!

 
  "House Rules by Jodi Piccoult"by dougher (see profile) 03/29/12

It was a fairly good book for book club because it illicited alot of comments. The book itself was not one of Jodi's better ones. Characters seemed weak and there seemed to be inconsistencies in the... (read more)

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