Mercy by Jodi Picoult
Find a Conversation
|Wed, 02-14-2007 - 12:16pm|
This was an older selection by Picoult--most of the story takes place in 1995-96. Like many of her other novels, it deals with a controversial subject, in this case, euthanasia. Jamie MacDonald's wife, Maggie, is suffering from terminal cancer when she begs him to end her life. He does so by smothering her with a pillow.
Jamie chooses to end his wife's life in Wheelock, Massachusetts. His distant cousin, Cameron MacDonald is the police chief of the small town. Cameron is also the leader of their Scottish clan, and is to take care of clan members as such. However, he has no choice but to arrest Jamie for Maggie's murder.
The characters are vivid, as with most of Picoult's novels. There are flashbacks to Jamie and Maggie's marriage, but the book actually focuses more on Cameron and his wife Allie. Allie becomes an ally for Jamie, who she finds herself relating to. Cameron finds himself falling for a new woman in town, his wife's flower shop assistant, Mia. Cameron would have preferred a life traveling and seeing the world, but bound by duty of the MacDonald clan he returned to Wheelock after a brief stint travelling to take his father's place and police chief and clan leader. Mia has lived all over the world and her free spirit appeals to Cameron, while his stability appeals to her.
The books is less about euthanasia as it is about love, marriage, duty, and loyalty. Picoult fans will love the characters and be on the edge of their seats towards the end as Jamie's trial commences.