Summary of Leaving Time

by Jodi Picoult | Includes Analysis

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Summary of Leaving Time: by Jodi Picoult | Includes Analysis

PLEASE NOTE: This is a summary of the book and NOT the original book. 

Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult - A 15-minute Summary




Inside this Instaread Summary:


 Overview of the entire book

 Introduction to the important people in the book

 Summary and analysis of all the chapters in the book

 Key Takeaways of the book

 A Reader's Perspective



Preview of this summary: 

Chapters 1-3


At thirteen, Jenna Metcalf is a precocious loner who has lived with her

grandmother since she was three. Her father, Thomas, is in a mental institution.

Jenna longs for her mom, a scientist who studied memory and elephants. One of

Alice’s key findings was that people remember negative moments, but forget

traumatic ones. Jenna believes this may have happened to her on the night that

her mother disappeared. That night, the trampled body of an employee, Nevvie

Ruehl, was found at Thomas’ elephant sanctuary in rural New Hampshire, the

New England Elephant Sanctuary. Jenna clings to her mother’s journals as a

way to hold onto her. She also searches for Alice online.


Jenna consults a medium, Serenity Jones, who tells her that Alice is alive before

brushing her off. Jenna learns online that Serenity lost her fame and credibility

after wrongly telling a senator that his missing son was alive.


She rides her bike home via a pretty spot carpeted with purple mushrooms at the

former sanctuary, now a nature park. The journals say that Maura, her mom’s

favorite elephant, buried her dead calf there.


Alice reflects on whether elephants actually forget anything.


Serenity’s gift of clairvoyance emerged when she was very young. She achieved

great success, even had her own TV show, until fame went to her head and her

two spirit guides left her. Now she is a fake psychic. After Jenna’s first visit,

Serenity dreams about a woman and an elephant watching over her. Jenna

returns. Serenity asks if her mother had something to do with elephants. When

Jenna reacts positively, she is certain that she is meant to help Jenna.  


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