“Small Great Things” Book Review

Jodi Picoult takes on yet another difficult subject with her latest novel, Small Great Things. Picoult commonly writes novels that reflect issues that are relevant in the world today, and this latest book is no exception. Small Great Things takes on the struggle of racism within the United States in a unique way. Picoult uses the perspectives of a black woman, a white woman, and a white supremacist to tell the story of a nurse, the black woman named Ruth, who is accused of being responsible for the death of a baby who is the son of the white supremacist. This accusation brings in the third character, a young white woman who becomes Ruth’s defense attorney. This conflict brings into question the reader’s own racial standpoints. It emphasizes that even though one may not be racist towards others, it is more important to actively take a stand for those who are discriminated against based on the color of their skin.
While reading this book, I found myself caught between emotions.  I hated the white supremacist for the beliefs that he holds, but at the same time, I almost feel empathy for him because he loses his son.  I think that is the reason that Picoult wrote this book — to make the reader question his or her opinions of the characters and to evaluate how he or she can reduce the issue of racism and stand up for the persecuted in his or her own community. This book gives a fresh light to an issue that is found all over the country, and I am glad that I read it.