Second Glance

Second Glance

A Novel

Book - 2008
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Baker & Taylor
A man's attempt to sell part of his property and the resulting Abenaki Indian tribe's protest that the land is a sacred burial ground spurs an investigation by ghost hunter Ross Wakeman, whose search for the truth leads to an encounter with a beautiful and mysterious woman named Lia and the discovery of a long-hidden murder haunting a small Vermont town. Reprint.

& Taylor

A man's attempt to sell a piece of land and the resulting Abenaki tribe's protest that it is a sacred burial ground spurs an investigation by ghost hunter Ross Wakeman, who discovers a long-hidden murder haunting a small Vermont town.

Simon and Schuster
This breathtaking novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult asks: Do we love across time, or in spite of it?

“Sometimes I wonder....Can a ghost find you, if she wants to?”

An intricate tale of love, haunting memories, and renewal, Second Glance begins in current-day Vermont, where an old man puts a piece of land up for sale and unintentionally raises protest from the local Abenaki Indian tribe, who insist it’s a burial ground. When odd, supernatural events plague the town of Comtosook, a ghost hunter is hired by the developer to help convince the residents that there’s nothing spiritual about the property.

Enter Ross Wakeman, a suicidal drifter who has put himself in mortal danger time and again. He’s driven his car off a bridge into a lake. He’s been mugged in New York City and struck by lightning in a calm country field. Yet despite his best efforts, life clings to him and pulls him ever deeper into the empty existence he cannot bear since his fiancée’s death in a car crash eight years ago. Ross now lives only for the moment he might once again encounter the woman he loves. But in Comtosook, the only discovery Ross can lay claim to is that of Lia Beaumont, a skittish, mysterious woman who, like Ross, is on a search for something beyond the boundary separating life and death. Thus begins Jodi Picoult’s enthralling and ultimately astonishing story of love, fate, and a crime of passion.

Hailed by critics as a “master” storyteller (The Washington Post), Picoult once again “pushes herself, and consequently the reader, to think about the unthinkable” (Denver Post). Second Glance, her eeriest and most engrossing work yet, delves into a virtually unknown chapter of American history—Vermont’s eugenics project of the 1920s and 30s—to provide a compelling study of the things that come back to haunt us—literally and figuratively. Do we love across time, or in spite of it?

Publisher: New York : Washington Square Press, 2008, c2003
ISBN: 9781416583868
Characteristics: 425 p. ; 21 cm


From the critics

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Mar 18, 2018

An absorbing and original ghost story, not my usual literary fare, but Picoult nimbly intertwines many characters and a huge plot with many subplots that kept me page-turning. She effortlessly explores multiple themes of America’s early 20th century eugenics and sterilization movement, the modern dicey topic of preimplantation genetic screening, land rights of indigenous people, the social stigmas of “weird-looking” diseases, the super natural, and suicide. Picoult has a knack for presenting ethical quandaries so the reader sees the debate from all sides. A good read that brought a number of issues to my attention that I was not previously aware of.

Jun 15, 2016

Thank you for the community comments that warned me there would be many characters introduced briefly at first - I took notes on a sticky note (that I left inside the front cover).
Jodi Picoult never ceases to amaze me with the amount of research that goes into her books. This one taught us about another controversial period in history that had disastrous results, while keeping us enthralled with the point of view of many characters affected by the controversial topics.
She is so good at thinking outside the box!

Nov 19, 2015

I got this audio book to listen to in my car for long traveling days. Although it's hard to keep some of the characters straight at times- I'm in love with this book! I find myself sitting in my car to hear more. Highly recommend!

Mar 13, 2014

I really enjoyed the book. I really liked that it involved ghosts and hauntings. All in all a very good read.

Sep 24, 2013

Pretty good book, easy read. This story is a little different from the usual Jodi Picoult style. I actually enjoyed it more because it did not follow her usual pattern.

May 10, 2013

Great as always.

Aug 20, 2012

Very interesting story

Nubia Apr 06, 2011

"Second Glance" is a story that not only I have learned a lot about Vermont, but also kept me interested the whole time I was reading the book. I also really liked "My Sister's Keeper" and "The pact" by Jodi Picoult, but this book had many details and characters that I found hard to stop reading it. Learning about ghosts and how their spirits can comeback after they have died, was something that kept me interested the whole time.
I also was able to relate this book to "Keeping Faith" because Lucy reminded me of Faith and the way she was able to speak with God.

I definitely enjoyed this book, and I highly recommend it to people who love books by Jodi Picoult.

Oct 19, 2010

Great book. It also taught me a lot about history in this country that I never knew before. Haunting.

Jan 22, 2009

Though not my favourite of her books, this is perhaps the most intricately woven story Jodi Picoult has ever written. I really enjoyed Second Glance, simply because of the many different elements it contained. You got love, murder, science, and history rolled into one excellent thought provoking novel. I reccomend this book to anyone who enjoys a good romance ,as well to anyone who loves to read about a dark chapter in America's history. It made me consider things I would have otherwise dismissed with a wave of my hand.

Short Version: You want a great book that makes you think, moving, and has a wonderful plot? Then Second Glance by Jodi Picoultis for you.


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Lauren Aug 17, 2008

Do we love across time? Or in spite of it? A developer has slated an ancient Abenaki Indian burial ground for a strip mall, and now strange happenings have tiny Comtosook, Vermont, talking of supernatural forces at work. Ross Wakeman is a ghost hunter who's never seen a ghost-all he's searching for is something to end the pain of losing his fiance Aimee in a car accident. He tried suicide-any number of times. Now Ross lives only for a way to connect with Aimee from beyond. Searching the site for signs of the paranormal, Ross meets the mysterious Lia, who sparks him to life for the first time in years. But the discoveries that await Ross are beyond anything he could dream of in this world-or the next. Expertly entwining a powerful drama of the heart's redemption and the disturbing real-life history of the VT eugenics project of the 1930s, Second Glance asks if truth is always something that can be measured… and if what can be measured is indeed always true.

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