I am a longtime reader of Jodi Picoult books and have read over half of her (many) novels. In the beginning of our reader/author relationship I admired her style of writing: jumping perspective, legal cases, controversial subject matter, twist endings, etc. I find now that all that is getting a little bit old, novel after novel. The Storyteller follows the same formula.
The subject is the holocaust this time, and the moral aspect is the ability to forgive, who forgivness is really for (the forgiver or the forgivee), and who is able to forgive (only someone to whom the deed was done?). There is a legal case, although it is much less prominent than in many of her other books, and there is a twist ending, but not as shocking as some of her others, if you pay attention.
It's a book in three parts, the first and third being in the 'present', and the second is a flashback to one person's first-hand experience with the holocaust. It is a fictional tale, and very heartbreaking. There is also a story being told in between perspective changes, that seemed a little to 'paranormal romance' for my liking, but hey, it could have happened (that a young Polish girl wrote it, I mean). Legends of the vampire have been around for a very long time, and it's a good story.
You've probably noticed I've only given the book 2 1/2 stars. That's not because it's a terrible book, it's because I think it could have been a lot better, and frankly, I'm a little tired of her formula, as I mentioned before. I think the characters in the 'present' part of the story were too flat - the only real characters were those in the second section of the book, and even in the paranormal story between chapters. The 'present' characters were just too cliche, and she'd used them all before.There was also the face of jesus in a loaf of bread at the bakery the main character bakes, which sounds awefully familar (Keeping Faith, anyone?) - and the main character's longstanding guilt and general manner of being reminded me a lot of the main character from Lone Wolf. I was just disappointed in this one. And some things were a little too convenient - the first and third parts just seemed too rushed to me - the character conflicts just didn't have enough time to really resolve themselves, we as readers were basically just told that they happened. It felt a little bit empty. The middle section was good writing though, can't deny that.