Small Great Things - Jodi Picoult

Small Great Things

By Jodi Picoult

  • Release Date: 2016-10-11
  • Genre: Fiction & Literature
Score: 4.5
From 2,713 Ratings


#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • With richly layered characters and a gripping moral dilemma that will lead readers to question everything they know about privilege, power, and race, Small Great Things is the stunning new page-turner from Jodi Picoult.


“[Picoult] offers a thought-provoking examination of racism in America today, both overt and subtle. Her many readers will find much to discuss in the pages of this topical, moving book.”—Booklist (starred review)

Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy’s counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family—especially her teenage son—as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other’s trust, and come to see that what they’ve been taught their whole lives about others—and themselves—might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game.

Praise for Small Great Things

Small Great Things is the most important novel Jodi Picoult has ever written. . . . It will challenge her readers . . . [and] expand our cultural conversation about race and prejudice.”The Washington Post

“A novel that puts its finger on the very pulse of the nation that we live in today . . . a fantastic read from beginning to end, as can always be expected from Picoult, this novel maintains a steady, page-turning pace that makes it hard for readers to put down.”San Francisco Book Review


  • Thought Provoking

    By Artist drake
    This novel, told from the points of view of its three main characters is both disturbing and enlightening. It shows not only how wide the gap racism creates but also how unaware many of us may be of our own racism. It is filled with surprises and events that make each of us question our own beliefs.
  • Relevant

    By BM for short
    Beautifully written. Great characters. Endearing protagonist. Very relevant and entertaining. Thought provoking.
  • Small Great Things

    By debika 1994
    Excellent! ! ! My favorite so far. She does an awesome job of portraying two diverse characters on opposite sides of a ever present issue of racism and extremist beliefs.
  • Amazing read!!

    By Kizzy Rock
    A must read!
  • The first of many...

    By celest30
    I loved this book, the authors rate truths and the wonderful ironic ending 🥰 This was my first of many Jodi Picoult books
  • Insightful and well tood

    By AidaLone
    I enjoyed the way the story was told in this book, from the perspective of each of the main characters. The heavy topic of the book was well told with clear and relatable characters on each end of the perspective. My only criticism is that the ending felt rushed and sloppy. Otherwise a great read.
  • Thought provoking and timely

    By ejm08
    I found myself angry, upset, hopeful and inspired after reading this book. It held a mirror up in which I saw things about myself that I didn’t like. It opened my eyes to the ways in which I have been blind to the real world around me. This book started small, great changes in me.
  • Amazing

    By kimberlyanneof
    One of the most profoundly moving, insightful and important books I’ve ever read
  • Page TURNER

    By lalastvnsn
    Absolutely in LOVE with this novel. I urge you to read Small Great Things
  • Powerful Book

    By Fiona 66dzx
    This is the first book I’ve finished reading in the past 5 years. I always wanted to read books but “ never had time” to finish reading one until I started to read this one - small great things. I just couldn’t stop reading it. The novel describes couple of characters who have different but strong personalities. From them, I learned not only the racial differences but more importantly, how to be a better self, no matter who you are.