Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
Published: October 11, 2016
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Format: audiobook via Overdrive
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.
Wow, talk about an emotional rollercoaster of a read! I won't do a full review because I feel the synopsis pretty much tells you a lot about what this book is about so I'm just telling you how I felt about it. I was a huge fan of Jodi Picoult but over the years I for whatever reason stopped reading her books. However, I kept hearing about this one and when I saw it was available in audio through Overdrive through my local library I figured why not? I’m so glad I did because this is one book that will stay with you long after the final page is turned.
This is the story of Ruth who is African American and a nurse and one day she is taken off a patient because his parents don't like that fact she is black. When tragedy strikes the newborn Ruth is caught between a rock and a hard place: does she do nothing like she was told or does she help and try to save his life, damn the consequences. She is later charged with a crime and she fights for her freedom and her right to speak her case. On the flip side, we get to hear and know the baby’s parents story and learn how they became racists. We hear their backstory and learn some shocking secrets to learn why they are the way they are today. This book had me from the very beginning and I couldn’t stop listening. It’s a pretty big book but the story never drags and with learning everything about these peoples lives the pages seems to fly by. The end of the book had me really emotional, it shows you how love can conquer all even when you never think it could and how given time some people really can change.
I found this book to be really relative to the times today sadly and this story really made me think about things. I love when a book could do that! I just loved this audio version the narrators were a real treat to listen to and I this is one of the best productions I've ever listened to! Since I’ve finished this read I’ve told just about everyone I could about it and I encouraged them to read it ASAP. I highly recommend this read and I promise this is one book that is a MUST read!