Sunday, January 15, 2012

Book Review: Plain Truth

Author: Jodi Picoult
Title: Plain Truth
Publisher: Washington Square Press
Publish Date: May 1, 2000
Buy: Amazon
Book Blurb: From the bestselling author of My Sister's Keeper comes the riveting story of a murder that shatters the picturesque calm of Amish country -- and tests the heart and soul of the lawyer defending the woman at the center of the storm.
The discovery of a dead infant in an Amish barn shakes Lancaster County to its core. But the police investigation leads to a more shocking disclosure: circumstantial evidence suggests that eighteen-year-old Katie Fisher, an unmarried Amish woman believed to be the newborn's mother, took the child's life. When Ellie Hathaway, a disillusioned big-city attorney, comes to Paradise, Pennsylvania, to defend Katie, two cultures collide -- and for the first time in her high-profile career, Ellie faces a system of justice very different from her own. Delving deep inside the world of those who live "plain," Ellie must find a way to reach Katie on her terms. And as she unravels a tangled murder case, Ellie also looks deep within -- to confront her own fears and desires when a man from her past reenters her life.
Review: I had a very hard time with this book. I've read a lot of Amish fiction, romance, mystery and otherwise. By 190 pages I was really ready to give up on this book, but I hate abandoning books, so I soldiered on. I will say that I had a little peak at the end because I wasn't sure if I was going to give up.

Here are the things I liked about the story:

1. Picoult did her homework on the Amish pretty well and she really managed to bring to light their way of life and a little about the religion. She did this without making this come across as Christian fiction, when it is in fact a mystery.

2. The romance between Ellie and Coop. This is actually what kept me reading. From the beginning it was terribly hard to like any of the characters in this book, but as these two kind of got together, it made the book a little easier to read.

That said, there wasn't much else I liked about the book. Here's the stuff that bothered me.

1. The courtroom drama. I hated the prosecutor, George. He was a total asshat. Most of the time I wanted to smack him in the face.

2. The characters were so weak at the beginning and terribly unlikable. Ellie was just too unsympathetic and too jaded. Katie was unlikable too. I don't even think I grew to like her much even at the end of the story.

3. The actual mystery itself was hard to take; an Amish girl killing her baby.

4. The sub-plots: How Katie got pregnant, the ghost-hunter boyfriend from Penn State and the ghost of her dead sister Hannah. Please stop already! None of this makes much sense.

5. The ending. We learn the killer but we can safely assume justice is not forthcoming.

I have never read any of Jodi's books before, but this one really put me off. It was also terribly depressing. Not what I want to go for in a read. I doubt I'll be picking up any other books by Jodi Picoult. I'm giving it three flowers because it wasn't awful, but it just didn't do it for me.

Rating 3 flowers


Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer said...

I have read and loved a lot of her books. My fav was House Rules. I may get this from the library

Nat said...

I have not read this one but I do enjoy Jodi Piccoult. Most of her books are emotional but not totally depressing on the whole. I would give her another may be surprised.

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