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Small Great Things

Picoult, Jodi

  25 Reviews

Ruth Jefferson, an African American labour and delivery nurse, faces a dreadful dilemma - follow the hospital's ruling that she is not to care for the child of white supremacists or throw caution to the wind and intervene when the baby stops breathing. This no-win situation leads to Ruth's appearance in court relying on a white lawyer who is convinced arguing racism will not keep her out of prison.

Powerful and compelling, and narrated from three different viewpoints, this is a courageous story confronting racism and white privilege in 21st century America.

Pages
467
Year
2016

Reviews

CHCH 268
15-01-2024
Thought provoking read which took a while to get into due to some rather unsympathetic characters, but as we continued it became more engrossing. Rather unrealistic ending, especially the Turk/Brittany plotline.
TAUP 007
15-12-2023
Excellent book. Thought provoking and enjoyed by all.
WHAKA 019
02-11-2023
The whole group enjoyed this book and we had a good discussion about it.
TAUP 012
18-10-2023
Most of the group enjoyed this book.
CHCH 155
16-08-2023
One of the best discussions we have had. Initially confronting but such a great story. Very heartening.
BLENH 024
10-07-2023
This book was extremely well-written. It is full of a variety of emotions and absolutely did not disappoint with the expected twist, something this author is known for. Would highly recommend this easy to read book. Some of us read it within 48 hours.
MORRI 002
08-06-2023
This one provided a great discussion, and we all rated it highly.
MAST 004
04-05-2023
Wonderfully descriptive and thought provoking.
WELL 221
10-12-2021
The whole group enjoyed this - highly recommended.
WELL 168
01-11-2021
The group all considered it a truly tremendous read! Very revealing.
NELS 061
31-05-2021
The beginning of this book was quite distressing to read, but very relevant in today's 'Black Lives Matter' movement. Fab book.
MILT 003
21-05-2021
Our group was impressed with the author's research into this story. She began her research with people of colour and listened to their story. She talked to white supremacists who had changed their lives around, and were now working for the good of all people, and trying to help kids into a better life. Our group enjoyed the book - our discussion was about Ruth and the hardship she had to go through.
NELS 007
11-11-2020
Best discussion we have ever had. Relevant today. Book about racism and white supremacy and privilege in the USA.
DUNED 099
29-07-2020
Excellent book for robust, interesting and helpful sharing of perspectives.
WHAKA 018
27-07-2020
Book loved by all.
CHCH 480
04-09-2019
The group felt that the writer provided a very balanced view of characters and issues, showing no bias. The writer provoked individual thinking, allowing the reader to make up their own mind without being coerced by the writer's opinion. Obviously very well researched.
CHCH 001
15-04-2019
A mammoth book, confrontational, educational and brilliantly researched. Having each of the central characters narrate their own stories allowed the reader insights into their lives and backgrounds - a powerful novel based on real happenings.
INVER 015
15-04-2019
Generally enjoyed by all our book club members.
CHCH 113
15-04-2019
'Small Great Things' led to one of our most animated discussions, as we explored what was meant by 'white privilege', and how we had all benefited from this. The topic was an absorbing one, but all thought there were several coincidences that were very unlikely ( eg. the discovery, by accident, of the baby's full test report), and that Turk Bauer was most unlikely to have transformed himself in the way he did. 2 nurses in the group found the topic particularly interesting!
CHCH 320
15-04-2019
A challenging read but a highly worthwhile one. All but one of our group scored it 8 or higher, out of 10. Picoult is a superb writer who researched this book to the "nth" degree. It was close to perfection how each character was portrayed, and how she alternated chapters between the three main characters. As well as the overt racism, we remembered vividly some of the more subtle instances of discrimination in the story. Some found the ending contrived and a little corny, but it will remain a book which generated introspective reflection. Well done, Picoult.
WHAKA 017
15-04-2019
"Extremely good read; confronting; enlightening, and "I never realised how racist I was" - were some of the comments. Clever use of a story to portray a common issue, with all view points well explored. Some members felt the ending was poor - having achieved the purpose of discussion on racism, she wrapped up the ends to provide the classic happy ending with only minimal reference to the story.
WHITBY 004
15-04-2019
Very readable. We felt the ending was contrived and unnecessary. A great book for BDS. Great in depth discussions re racism and white supremacists.
TAIH 002
15-04-2019
Tremendous discussion - the subject really resonated with the group. I think we all came face to face with the fact we were not as unprejudiced as previously thought!
HAMIL 029
03-04-2019
We were very like the Christchurch group. The horror in Christchurch greatly affected our reading of the book - most of us laid the book aside for a time (those who actually read it). We are divided over Picoult's merits as a writer - is she a great commentator on current issues or just someone who knows what the reading public wants So - the book deals with racism from several points of view - good - but the plot is over-eventful and some characters unconvincing - not so good. But we did have an interesting discussion on racism and prejudice in relation to this text.
CHCH 449
07-10-2018
The group was truly divided on this one - two members loved it, two members hated it (although only one of those two actually read it all), another three members had mixed feelings, and one just couldn't find the energy to read it past the first few chapters. Consequently we had a lively discussion on racial issues, characters and prejudices.