House Rules: A Novel

by Jodi Picoult

Washington Square Press | November 9, 2010 | Trade Paperback

House Rules: A Novel is rated 4.22222222222222 out of 5 by 9.
When your son can’t look you in the eye . . . does that mean he’s guilty?

Jacob Hunt is a teen with Asperger’s syndrome. He’s hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, though he is brilliant in many ways. But he has a special focus on one subject—forensic analysis. A police scanner in his room clues him in to crime scenes, and he’s always showing up and telling the cops what to do. And he’s usually right.

But when Jacob’s small hometown is rocked by a terrible murder, law enforcement comes to him. Jacob’s behaviors are hallmark Asperger’s, but they look a lot like guilt to the local police. Suddenly the Hunt family, who only want to fit in, are directly in the spotlight. For Jacob’s mother, Emma, it’s a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it’s another indication why nothing is normal because of Jacob.

And over this small family, the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 560 pages, 8.25 × 5.31 × 1.5 in

Published: November 9, 2010

Publisher: Washington Square Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 145161120X

ISBN - 13: 9781451611205

Found in: Literary

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the best books I've ever read! This was my first Jodi Picoult read and is definitely not my last! This book made me feel such a wide range of emotion. It is also great because I got to learn a lot about Aspergers.
Date published: 2015-12-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Book, but some inaccuracies. I originally heard about this book from my mother. She read the book and loved it, but I never got the chance to read it until now. I started reading "House Rules" as a school assignment and I absolutely loved the book. It was a phenomenal read and I definitely recommend it. I really enjoyed the way the book was written. Typical of Picoult, each section of the book was written in the point of view of each of the characters so you really got a feel for how each character felt about an event happening in the story. One inaccuracy of the story was how Jodi portrayed Aspergers Syndrome. The book reflects the amount of effort that she put in to find background information but she forgot one important detail. When the character of "Jacob" is described, he has almost every possible symptom of someone with Aspergers. In reality people with this condition might only have two or three of the symptoms. Although Jacob's condition is slightly unrealistic, it makes for a great read. By including all the symptoms, Jacob is a much more interesting character and can provide more detail to the plot. One of my favorite things about the book is the title. The title for the book is based on the house rules of the Hunt family. Jacobs mother, Emma has created rules that Jacob follows religiously and will not break. One of the more important rules is "to always be honest". The importance of the rule can be discovered when you read the book. There are also the unwritten house rules that are meant for Jacob's brother, Theo. This set of rules are followed by Theo to keep his brother safe and content. Overall, I loved the book and everyone that comes across it should give it a read.
Date published: 2015-03-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Picoult Does it Again I enjoy all of Picoult's novels, and House Rules is no exception. In my opinion, it's one of her most interesting reads to date. She does a great job of exploring what it's like to live with (and love someone with) Asperger's Syndrome, and as usual, it's clear that she took the time to do her research and develop a great plot with interesting and individually complex characters. The only problem I had with this book was with the ending. I felt it was abrupt and unnecessary, and gave a plot that I got very wrapped up in a very anticlimactic feeling.
Date published: 2012-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic I absolutely loved this book, i couldn't put it down. From beginning to end i was mesmerized with this book. it lets you take a peek at how it is or could be to have a child with Aspergers and the ups and downs of life. great book!
Date published: 2012-01-07
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Way to long! This was my first (and last) Jodi Picoult book. I thought it was pretty good although unsatisfactory ending after 529 pages! The many mistakes distracted and frustrated me. I kept flipping back pages to make sure i hadn't misread something.
Date published: 2011-08-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Intense read, but underwhelming I thoroughly enjoy every book I have read by Jodi Picoult thus far and I've read quite a few. House Rules was a very good read throughout and I could not for the life of me put the book down. I, myself, have worked with a few kids who have been on the autism spectrum and am very interested with the subject but you do not have to be to like this book. I just feel that the novel was somewhat underwhelming. Normally in a Picoult book there is always a twist, however, I knew what happened the entire time. It was missing the big Picoult twist.
Date published: 2011-06-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty good! This is only the third book I have read by Jodi Picoult, but I of course expected this book to be good. I mean, Picoult isn’t the #1 New York Times Bestseller for no reason. And this book was really good! I should have remembered from reading the back of the book that the main character, Jacob Hunt, was a teen. But when I first read it, I thought it was about a young boy. When I think of someone with autism, I usually think of a child. So the fact that Jacob is 18 was really interesting. Some might have guessed the end, but I only thought of it has a possibility. Picoult had you thinking of many different theories as to what really happened, so I was never really sure how it would end. I think however that Picoult would hit me with a surprise, because she was leading towards one theory for quite a bit. So since she made you think that was how it was going to end, it was kinda obvious that she probably wouldn’t actually end it that way. Being 532 pages, I can honestly say it wouldn’t have hurt if that story was shorter. I mean most of it was interesting, but all of it was probably not needed. I mean not only is it that many pages, but the writing also isn’t big. At first it took me a few days to get into it, because it felt like I would be reading it forever. But when I got a quarter to half way in, I started reading it quicker. Overall, I really liked it and I would read it again. I think Jodi Picoult is a very good writer. I wish I could write as good as her. I can’t wait to read more of her books.
Date published: 2011-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such an AMAZING READ I absolutely loved this book. The first time I saw it was when I was with my aunt in Shoppers Drug Mart. I saw it on display, read the summary and knew instantly that it would be an amazing book! I definitely encourage you to pick up this book because it is a great read and it will touch your heart. You will fall in love with Jacob and how he does things that are different then the ways that you do things. You will learn a lot from thins book! READ HOUSE RULES
Date published: 2011-04-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from House Rules AMAZING My first Picoult book and I absolutely loved it. From start to finish, I was hooked and couldn't put it down. A MUST read, especially if you have interest in disabilities or the justice system. My mother-in law and sister-in law both read it as well and loved it just as much as I did, and we all have very different interests. Warning! Read this book when you have time to because I promise you will not be able to put it down!
Date published: 2011-01-21

– More About This Product –

House Rules: A Novel

House Rules: A Novel

by Jodi Picoult

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 560 pages, 8.25 × 5.31 × 1.5 in

Published: November 9, 2010

Publisher: Washington Square Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 145161120X

ISBN - 13: 9781451611205

Read from the Book

Emma Everywhere I look, there are signs of a struggle. The mail has been scattered all over the kitchen floor; the stools are overturned. The phone has been knocked off its pedestal, its battery pack hanging loose from an umbilicus of wires. There’s one single faint footprint at the threshold of the living room, pointing toward the dead body of my son, Jacob. He is sprawled like a starfish in front of the fireplace. Blood covers his temple and his hands. For a moment, I can’t move, can’t breathe. Suddenly, he sits up. “Mom,” Jacob says, “you’re not even trying.” This is not real, I remind myself, and I watch him lie back down in the exact same position—on his back, his legs twisted to the left. “Um, there was a fight,” I say. Jacob’s mouth barely moves. “And . . . ?” “You were hit in the head.” I get down on my knees, like he’s told me to do a hundred times, and notice the crystal clock that usually sits on the mantel now peeking out from beneath the couch. I gingerly pick it up and see blood on the corner. With my pinkie, I touch the liquid and then taste it. “Oh, Jacob, don’t tell me you used up all my corn syrup again—” “Mom! Focus!” I sink down on the couch, cradling the clock in my hands. “Robbers came in, and you fought them off.” Jacob sits up and sighs. The food dye and corn syrup mixture has matted his dark hair; his eyes are shining, even though they won’t meet mine. “Do you honestly believe I’d execute the same crime scene twice?” He unfolds a fist, and for the fir
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From the Publisher

When your son can’t look you in the eye . . . does that mean he’s guilty?

Jacob Hunt is a teen with Asperger’s syndrome. He’s hopeless at reading social cues or expressing himself well to others, though he is brilliant in many ways. But he has a special focus on one subject—forensic analysis. A police scanner in his room clues him in to crime scenes, and he’s always showing up and telling the cops what to do. And he’s usually right.

But when Jacob’s small hometown is rocked by a terrible murder, law enforcement comes to him. Jacob’s behaviors are hallmark Asperger’s, but they look a lot like guilt to the local police. Suddenly the Hunt family, who only want to fit in, are directly in the spotlight. For Jacob’s mother, Emma, it’s a brutal reminder of the intolerance and misunderstanding that always threaten her family. For his brother, Theo, it’s another indication why nothing is normal because of Jacob.

And over this small family, the soul-searing question looms: Did Jacob commit murder?

About the Author

Jodi Picoult grew up in Nesconset, New York. She received an B.A. in creative writing from Princeton, and a master's degree in education from Harvard. She is a bestselling author of fifteen novels. Her latest one, number 16, entitled Handle With Care, is sure to become a best seller as well. Most recently she wrote five issues of the Wonder Woman comic book series for DC Comics. Her books are translated into 34 languages in 35 countries. The first book to be made into a movie, My Sister's Keeper, will premiere in 2009 in theatres starring Cameron Diaz. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.

Editorial Reviews

“It’s hard to exaggerate how well Picoult writes.”

—The Financial Times