Small Great Things

Jodi Picoult
Received from Netgalley

SMALL GREAT THINGS is written by a white author who teaches you a little bit of what it feels like to be African American in todays society. I’ve always loved Jodi Piccoult’s books and this story is no exception. Jodi always tackles the controversial discussions in her stories and I’m sure this one is going to hit home for many readers. It is a page turner of a story that will show the reader how ignoring things and pretending not to see them can lead to disastrous things happening.

All of the characters are very relatable for the most part in SMALL GREAT THINGS. Ruth has been a nurse for over twenty years. She graduated from an Ivy League school and is well respected by her peers. All of that changes when she is called on to care for a mother and a newborn. Davis, the newborn and his mother Brit are in Ruth’s care until Ruth walks in the room and tries to get David to nurse. His father, Turk, a white supremacist, tells Ruth to get her hands off of Davis and not to touch his wife. He goes to Ruth’s supervisor and tells her no African American nurses are to touch his wife or his son.

Ruth has never experienced such racism at the hospital and is very angry. Of course, in SMALL GREAT THINGS a tragedy occurs and Ruth is blamed. She is later arrested and dragged out of her house in the middle of the night. Her public defender, Kennedy tells Ruth that race can’t be brought up at the trial and Ruth cannot accept that. Race and prejudice at its worst is something Kennedy thinks she knows but she is going to learn a huge lesson from Ruth. SMALL GREAT THINGS is going to belt the reader right in the gut like it did to me and stay with you for a very long time after you finish reading.

Once you start reading SMALL GREAT THINGS you will not be able to put it down. You will be holding your breath, screaming at certain people, and speeding through the pages with tears in your eyes. I know this because it is exactly what happened to me. Be prepared for your emotions to be on an emotional roller coaster with no stops until the very end of the story. Jodi Piccoult sure does open the readers eyes to white privilege and all that it means.
SMALL GREAT THINGS is a powerful story told by three points of view. Ruth, the nurse on trial, Kennedy, the white public defender, and Turk, the white supremacist father. Each of them learns things about themselves, buried deep inside, as well as the others around them.
I truly believe everyone NEEDS to read this story.



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