Like every other novels of Jody Picoult I have read, also Plain Truth underlines the excellent style of the writer, her bright eye for detail, her delicate but at the same time complex way to describe the human relationships.
The story can be read form different points of view, as each chapter is dedicated to the most important characters who tell us what happens throughout their feelings and their opinions.
We know how Katie Fisher, an Amish eighteen years old girl who lives according to the literal teachings of Christ.
Katie has been accused of murdering her child, but committing a murder is the most arrogant act there is for Plain folks: to decide you have the power of God, to take someone else's life.
This is the defensive line taken by Kate's lawyer Ellie Hathaway a young 39 years old woman and Kate's distant cousin.
In preparation for the trial, Ellie lives with the Fishers on their farm and learns the customs of the Amish.
The very first thing you learn as an Amish kid is that there's always a higher authority to yield to--whether it's your parents, the greater good of the community, or God.
They're people, like anyone else. But the difference is that they try to lead a quiet, peaceful Christian life .
Katie wanted to get married, to have children, but she'd always assumed it would happen the way it happened to everyone else in her world. Discovering she was pregnant with an English man's child, and unwed--both glaringly against the Amish norm--it led right to being shunned, which was something her mind wasn't equipped to handle.
She doesn't know about murder, she can't remember exactly what happened that morning when her child was born, but she does know how to fix things in her life when they're messed up. If you make a mistake and you repent, you're forgiven. You're welcomed back. If you lie, and keep lying, there won't be a place for you.
She doesn't know how to be selfish and she isn't certainly not selfish enough to kill another human being with intent.
If you follow the Ordnung, you are right. If you break the rules, you get shunned.
Ellie puts in evidence that our culture promotes individuality, while the Amish are deeply entrenched in community.
She has based an entire legal defence on the fact that an Amish woman would not, could not, commit murder.
So, who is the guilty?
The baby had disappeared when Katie was asleep--and the reason she didn't remember wrapping and hiding his body was because she had not been the one to do it.
Until the end of the novel we don't know what exactly happened and in addition to this there is a twist that leaves the reader without words...
I read Picoult’s The Pact last year, I’ve recently read Plain Truth. The two plots are not comparable, but I can say that I enjoyed The Pact much better for the fact that as soon as I finished the book I blurted out “wow.” However, Plain Truth was a good book.
Picoult is a master of drawing the reader in. I also found the story interesting because it takes place where I live in central Pennsylvania. An unwed Amish teenager gives birth to a baby alone in a barn. The next day the baby is found dead and the mother is charged with its murder. The story leads the reader through Amish customs and lifestyle to show the affect that this type of pregnancy has on the community. The story was very good; however, I thought the ending was predictable. Although the book doesn’t specifically say, it’s implied that there wasn’t actually a murder and that the baby died of a natural cause, but the person who covered up the death was predictable. I take this into account when comparing it with The Pact which had a very surprising ending.
Although the underlying ghost story running throughout the book is really intriguing to me, it felt out of place. Picoult tries to build multi-dimensional characters and stories, but in Plain Truth the integration of these layers is a bit rough.
Read my review on my blog:
I really liked learning about the Amish and their culture, their beliefs. The book is very suspenseful. This was the first book I read from Jodi Picoult. Later, by reading more books by her, I discovered she loves tragedy and most times there is going to be a court trial involved. However, her novels are generally based on very controversial, thought provoking subjects and that is always entertaining, at least in my case....Continua