Change of Heart
Jodi Picoult, , read by a full cast. . Random House Audio, $39.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-4281-9817-3
A cast of four narrators (plus one extra for the epilogue) read Picoult's latest melodramatic take on an interesting social dilemma. Death-row inmate Shay Bourne, convicted of murdering a little girl and her cop stepfather, wants to donate his heart to the little girl's sister, who requires a transplant. ACLU lawyer Maggie Bloom (voiced by Danielle Ferland) and Fr. Michael Wright (played by Stafford Clark-Price) attempt to carry out Shay's wishes. Meanwhile, as apparent miracles begin happening in the prison, some wonder if Shay is some sort of messiah. As the overlong book drags on, the narrators do their best to keep the story moving and hold listeners' interest. Ferland effectively inhabits Maggie and James Frangione's calm baritone does much to engender sympathy for Shay's fellow inmate, Lucius. However, listeners may have a tough time getting to the painfully obvious revelation of the truth about Shay's crimes and the book's long-foregone conclusion.
Reviewed on: 04/28/2008