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The Wind That Shakes the Barley Essays

Family Family is defined as unconditional love, unconditional help and less selfishness. Authors Jodi Picoult and Kim Edwards prove that this is not always true. Picoult the author of My Sisters Keeper argues that when an individual is affected by illness, family will do whatever it takes to save them because when a family falls apart one’s life shortly follows. Edwards argues a similar case in her novel The Memory Keepers Daughter that all it takes is one selfish act to change the direction of one’s life because one lie can forever change a family’s density .

Where Picoult uses Kate’s leukemia to demonstrate how it affects every family member Edwards uses the “death” of her daughter to show how lies can be life changing. Both prove how it affects a family and how it affects one’s way of life are uncontollable. In her book My Sisters Keeper Picoult demonstrates though the character Sara that she is willing to put one of her daughter’s lives in jeopardy in hope of saving the both of them. When Kate, Sara’s daughter is diagnosed with leukemia, Anna is conceived just from the sole purpose of saving her sisters life.

I have not really considered the specifics of this child. I have thought of this daughter only in terms of what she will be able to do for the daughter I already have... Then again, my dreams for her are no less exalted; I plan for her to save her sister’s life. (Picoult 100) Through Sara, Picoult demonstrates how life’s priority’s are established when sickness is a factor. Sara is overwhelmed with her daughter’s diagnosis and would do anything in her power to save her, even if it means ruining another life in the process.

Where Jodi Picoult uses Sara’s struggle to save her sickened daughter Kim Edwards uses Dr. David Henry’s lie to show how ones selfish act can result the way life plays through. Dr Henry knows how much this lie will affect his family but he still does it. The author says “I’m trying to spare us all a terrible grief” (Edwards 19). Edwards shows how Dr Henry choice to deceive his wife ultimately destroyed his family. Both Picoult and Edwards discuss the effects of a family and how it affects one’s way of life.

Both authors show that families are not perfect and everything has a consequence. Picoult states that family will always be there where Edwards argues that lies are life changing. Both My Sisters Keeper and they The Memory Keepers Daughter tell the story of one family who makes mistakes but still lives through them. Picoult’s Sara has a pre planned baby just to help cure her daughter. “I'm a designer baby. I was made in a dish to be spare parts for Kate” (Picoult 140). All Sara wanted was for her daughter to be leukemia free but she ruined someone life because of it.

Edwards writes of Dr David Henry who sends his Down syndrome baby away. “He had handed his daughter to Caroline gill”. (Edwards 22). Dr David's terrible lie never went away and always tormented him. Life is filled with things beyond our control, and we must rely on ourselves to discover the link between suffering, joy and acceptance. Jodi Picoult’s My Sisters Keeper and Kim Edwards The Memory Keepers Daughter demonstrate that Family is defined as unconditional love, unconditional help and less selfishness.

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