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Books Between Bites
June 7 @ 12:15 pm - 1:00 pm
An event every month that begins at 12:15pm on day First of the month, repeating until December 6, 2017
Wednesday, September 6, 12:15pm, Madden Auditorium
Speaker: Dick Virgin
Book: Small Great Things
Author: Jodi Picoult
Another high quality effort by Jodi Picoult who uses a true story as the basis of a gripping novel that embroils the reader in a contemporary story. An AfroAmerican nurse finds herself facing charges of allowing an infant child of white supremacists parents to die after they had her removed from their child’s care.
Richard Virgin, a native Midwesterner, is a retired public school administrator who worked in a variety of school districts including District #61. He spent the last 15 years of his career opening and building a unique educational program of voluntary desegregation in an urban community collaborating with 12 rural/suburban school districts of Connecticut. It’s success led to the development of a proliferation of desegregated magnet schools in Connecticut.
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. From Amazon.