The endings of most books are, at best, satisfactory. The author has written a good book, kept your interest throughout and is now simply tying up the loose ends to bring the novel to a close. Most attempts at “surprise” endings don’t quite make it. You have either seen it coming or the ending doesn’t make sense in respect to everything that has come before it. Defending Jacob is a book with an ending that clobbers you over the head when your back is turned. You didn’t expect this and you simply go, “wow”!
William Landay is a former District Attorney so he knows his way around a courtroom and the law. This expertise has helped him create a riveting story of murder in a Massachusetts town where the accused killer is the son of the District Attorney. Andrew and Laurie Barber are out to prove their son, Jacob, is innocent of the charges against him. Jacob would not and could not have knifed his classmate Ben Rifkin in the woods behind the school.
As with any good story there are plots within the plots and there are many of them in Defending Jacob. The Barber’s shattered world is the fragile platform on which they look for clues that will free their teenage son. As one parent never loses hope of Jacob’s innocence, the other begins to falter in their belief. As a reader, you will, at times, side with both of them. As the family and the very town they live in are torn apart by the killing and the trial we are compelled to investigate our own feelings and how we would react if faced with the same dilemma. As we know, and are reminded throughout this gripping account, things are not always black or white and we have to delve carefully among the many shades of grey.
Defending Jacob will keep you turning the pages looking for your own clues. Be careful though, don’t turn your back as you near the end, because William Landay is approaching you from the rear and, trust me, he is going to clobber you on the back of the head. When I came to, I gave this one **** four stars.
There are 25 reviews of The Rag Tree on Amazon. Twenty one of them are five-star reviews. The others are 2 three stars and 2 four stars. For the most part, folks love this book. Therefore, pay no attention to the fact that it is the first book in a long time that I could not finish. I gave up on it after about 40%. I just found it too difficult to follow and I wasn’t interested in the characters.
There was a major movie out about 2 years ago called “Inception” starring Leonardo DiCaprio. It was about dreams within dreams and it lost me shortly after the opening credits. This book was, for me, the written equivalent of the movie “Inception”. I just couldn’t follow it.
Once again, I am absolutely in the minority on this one. Loved by many, detested by me,I can not justify more than one * star for this confusing tale of Ireland.
I do not even know where to start in describing this book. There is a short review on Amazon by a 15 year old teenage boy that would be as good a place as any to start. I hope he doesn’t mind, here it is:
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Book I’ve Read in Years January 10, 2012
By Alex F
Format:Hardcover|Amazon Verified Purchase
“I’ve read a lot of books, but this is one of my all time favorites; that’s not something I can say about very many books. I’ll make it simple; I’m a fifteen year old teenage boy. When I usually read a book, I toss it aside and move on to the next one. And, like most teenage boys, I am not very emotional. At the end of this book, I cried. Not just a few tears either; I was full on bawling my eyes out. That’s how good this book is. I promise you, unless you have a heart of stone, you will love this book”.
Hazel and Augustus are two teens with terminal cancer. They meet at a Kids With Cancer Survivor Group meeting and fall in love. John Green, the author, takes over from there with a story line and dialogue that is second to none in my reading experience. There are so many memorable lines in this book that there are websites devoted entirely to listing the phrases and sentences. If you are hesitant because you think it’s all too sad, don’t be. It is both sad and joyous and the joy, to me, outweighed the sadness. It’s a life lesson in how to live and how to cram as much living as possible into whatever time we have allotted.
The Fault in Our Stars was a book I didn’t want to finish because I wasn’t ready to leave Hazel and Augustus and the others who populated their world. It’s a book to be read again and again. It’s a book you should read. It’s a book you should read NOW. It’s a book that deserves all five ***** stars.