Small Great Things – Jodi Picoult

To Kill a Mockingbird for the 21st Century’ Real Reader Review

Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy’s counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family—especially her teenage son—as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other’s trust, and come to see that what they’ve been taught their whole lives about others—and themselves—might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game

Small Great Things is about prejudice and power; it is about that which divides and unites us.

It is about opening your eyes.

My Review:  It is not often I am left speechless after finishing a book, but right now I don’t know what to say to give this book the praise it rightly deserves.  This is an incredibly powerful and thought provoking book about racism, prejudice, preconceptions and above all family.  Jodi Picoult’s research and attention to detail is present throughout. From midwifery to working in McDonalds, her descriptions are so minute that at times you forget you are reading a story and think you’re being educated.  This book is breathtaking and therefore I am delighted to put it in my Top 10 books of 2016.

About the Author: Jodi Picoult is the author of twenty-three novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Leaving Time, The Storyteller, Lone Wolf, Between the Lines, Sing You Home, House Rules, Handle with Care, Change of Heart, Nineteen Minutes, and My Sister’s Keeper. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.

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