The One with Noble Paiges: Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Hi, hey, and hello there! It's our 6th book discussion today! This is fun :) Today we're talking about LEAVING TIME by Jodi Picoult. In preparation for this book review I did some research and it seems that people either love it or hate it. I for one loved it! I thought it was clever, I loved learning more about elephants because my dad loves elephants and I love my dad, and I was totally surprised by the ending. SPOILERS BELOW!

Synopsis: For more than a decade, Jenna Metcalf hasn't stopped thinking about her mother, Alice, who mysteriously disappeared in the wake of a tragic accident. Refusing to believe she was abandoned, Jenna searches for her mother regularly online and pores over the pages of Alice’s old journals. A scientist who studied grief among elephants, Alice wrote mostly of her research among the animals she loved, yet Jenna hopes the entries will provide a clue to her mother’s whereabouts. Desperate to find the truth, Jenna enlists two unlikely allies in her quest: Serenity Jones, a psychic who rose to fame finding missing persons, only to later doubt her gifts, and Virgil Stanhope, the jaded private detective who’d originally investigated Alice’s case along with the strange, possibly linked death of one of her colleagues. As the three work together to uncover what happened to Alice, they realize that in asking hard questions, they’ll have to face even harder answers. As Jenna’s memories dovetail with the events in her mother’s journals, the story races to a mesmerizing finish. A deeply moving, gripping, and intelligent page-turner, Leaving Time is Jodi Picoult at the height of her powers - agreed!


1. Let's discuss the "elephant in the room" haha - what did you think of the "Sixth Sense" surprise? Were you expecting it or were you totally caught off guard?
I was expecting some kind of trick ending, but I totally wasn't prepared to find out that Jenna has been dead since that sad night and therefore a ghost in the entire book! Makes me want to read the book all over again to see if I could pick up on it. It did seem like when Alice was narrating she often talked about mother elephants losing their babies, so that was definitely foreshadowing. I was kind of upset about the twister though in all honesty and literally said out loud, "Really?" when it was revealed. But, it was clever and interesting.

2. What did you think of the concept of allomothering where 'it takes a village' and the way the elephants work this out? How did that concept apply to Jenna's young life at the sanctuary?
There were so many parallels between the elephants and Jenna's/Alice's life stories - a whole bunch of people took care of Jenna growing up because her parents were taking care of the sanctuary. In the end it was an elephant who buried Jenna after she was murdered. And I'll tell you what, there are some days I would love to share mothering responsibilities - I'm all about "allomothering" :)

3. Serenity says that the universe wants two things - for people to do no intentional harm to themselves or others and to get happy. Do you think this is a good philosophy to live by?
Absolutely! Those are definitely big "life" goals and I'm thankful for the knowledge of the gospel to help me with these everyday tasks.

4. This is definitely a novel about mothers/daughters and females in general. But the three main men in the book (Thomas, Gideon, and Virgil) all had their own demons to deal with. Ultimately, most everyone in the book had a sad ending (except for Serenity) but what did you think about the mens' endings/problems?
Now that I think about it, this was a pretty sad book all around! Thomas wound up in a mental institution because he was off his rocker, Gideon's wife killed herself because he was having an affair with Alice and he eventually died in war (I believe?), and Virgil killed himself after not being able to solve Alice's disappearance. So so sad!

5. Do you think the vines on the cover are supposed to look like elephant trunks? 
Absolutely. Totally. I wonder why they aren't actually elephant trunks?


Kelsey Noble has another set of fun and thoughtful questions about LEAVING TIME by Jodi Picoult on her blog!


Time to announce our next Noble Paiges book: THE ROSIE EFFECT by Graeme Simsion - release date of December 30th 2014!
Synopsis: The highly anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestselling novel The Rosie Project, starring the same extraordinary couple now living in New York and unexpectedly expecting their first child. Get ready to fall in love all over again. Don Tillman and Rosie Jarman are back. The Wife Project is complete, and Don and Rosie are happily married and living in New York. But they’re about to face a new challenge because - surprise! - Rosie is pregnant. Don sets about learning the protocols of becoming a father, but his unusual research style gets him into trouble with the law. Fortunately his best friend Gene is on hand to offer advice: he’s left Claudia and moved in with Don and Rosie. As Don tries to schedule time for pregnancy research, getting Gene and Claudia to reconcile, servicing the industrial refrigeration unit that occupies half his apartment, helping Dave the Baseball Fan save his business, and staying on the right side of Lydia the social worker, he almost misses the biggest problem of all: he might lose Rosie when she needs him the most. Graeme Simsion first introduced these unforgettable characters in The Rosie Project, which NPR called “sparkling entertainment along the lines of Where’d You Go Bernadette and When Harry Met Sally.” The San Francisco Chronicle said, “sometimes you just need a smart love story that will make anyone, man or woman, laugh out loud.” If you were swept away by the book that’s captivated a million readers worldwide, you will love The Rosie Effect.

Our next Noble Paiges discussion of  THE ROSIE EFFECT by Graeme Simsion will be on Saturday February 7th 2015, so mark your calendars and see you then! And make sure to visit Kelsey's blog for the other half of the discussion!


  1. I enjoy Jodie Picoult's style of writing. I will definitively keep this book in mind and check it out!

  2. Ohhhhhh I am going to have to check out Leaving Time!!!!!

  3. I put this book on hold at my library, but didn't get it quite in time :( Just watch, it will totally be there for me this week...


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