Friday, December 9, 2016

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

Ruth Jefferson is an extremely competent labor and delivery nurse, with over twenty years of experience, conducting a routine checkup on a newborn named Davis. Shortly after Davis' checkup, Ruth is told that she's no longer responsible for Davis' care. Davis' parents, Turk and Brittany Bauer, are white supremacists and are adamant that they no longer want Ruth, an African American, caring for their son. The hospital follows the parents wishes, and Ruth is no longer allowed to have contact with the patient. When newborn Davis goes into cardiac distress after a routine procedure, Ruth finds herself as the only nurse in the ward. Hesitating between following orders and following the nursing code of ethics, Ruth is reluctant to perform CPR on the baby. When young Davis dies, Ruth is the one charge with a serious crime.

Going to trial, Ruth is unable to afford a lawyer so white, middle-class, public defender Kennedy McQuarrie is assigned to her case. Kennedy insists that arguing this case based solely on racial discrimination is a sure fire way to earn Ruth a conviction. As the trial progresses, Ruth and Kennedy begin to see that they're more alike both in and out of the courtroom.

Jodi Picoult does not disappoint with her new novel Small Great Things tackling tough, current subjects like racism, racial profiling, and the justice system. Told in alternating viewpoints from the major characters, this new novel is definitely one you can't put down.