When Ellie Hathaway, a disillusioned big-city attorney, comes to Paradise, Pennsylvania, to defend Katie, two cultures collide, and, for the first time in her high-profile career, Ellie faces a system of justice very different from her own. Delving deep inside the world of those who live "plain", Ellie must find a way to reach Katie on her terms. And as she unravels a tangled murder case, Ellie also looks deep within, to confront her own fears and desires when a man from her past reenters her life.
Moving seamlessly from psychological drama to courtroom suspense, Plain Truth is a fascinating portrait of Amish life and a moving exploration of the bonds of love, friendship, and the heart's most complex choices.
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©2000 Jodi Picoult; (P)2006 Recorded Books
"Absorbing and affecting." (Entertainment Weekly)
"The story's quietude is appropriate, given its magnificently painted backdrop and distinctive characters." (Publishers Weekly)
As usual, Jodi Picoult's books are always interesting and keep me listening. In fact, I probably would have given it another star or two if it wasn't for the narrators. It was hard to tell between the two but one sounded like a man. The voice of Katy was absolutely ridiculous. She sounded like she was 2, not 18. I'd compare the narration to dragging chalk on a chalkboard. It was really bad!
I live near the Amish in Pennsylvania. I read the positive reviews and was looking forward to a great read. But I was disappointed. It was a predictable plot that just failed to grip me. The background info about the Amish culture proved weak enough to lose my trust. Unlike the author states, the Amish youth do not sometimes stray to buy beer at the local Turkey Hill. They can’t. PA liquor laws prohibit alcohol sales in convenience stores. Six packs are bought in bars. Cases are sold at beer distributors. Someone didn’t do their homework. Oddly enough, the Amish are sometimes seen pulling a buggy up to a beer distributor. Now there’s an ironic picture that the author could have had fun with. The book’s courtroom scenes were probably the most disappointing, filled with unbelievably unprofessional comments from lawyers and judges. The end left me feeling cheated.
When I read the other posts here, I have to assume the other reviewers have read a different book.
Characters behave stupidly and without proper motivation. You quickly grow to hate the accused, Katie, whom we presume the author would like us to sympathize with. As Katie is her own most determined enemy, doing everything imaginable to ruin her own case and credibility, that isn't easy. Furthermore, we are supposed to believe her constant, whiney self-justifications and endless prevarications neatly cohabitate with the honest and self-effacing character of the Amish. By the time the book is half done, I was so disgusted with this character (and others), I was actually rooting for the prosecution.
Worse, the author built such a fragile plot that a single question, one any intelligent five year old could have posed at any number of points, would have brought down the whole house of cards. The holes are too many to list, but suffice to say we're asked to believe a hot-shot lawyer couldn't see what is laughably apparent to the reader. We're also asked to believe that this lawyer, who didn't want the case in the first place, would put up with the constant lying and betrayals of her own client, making her equally unlikable as a character.
This book insulted my intelligence in almost every scene. It was not helped by the halting, melodramatic reading that made the characters appear even dumber than they might otherwise. But let's not blame the messenger. This isn't a 'who-dunnit' so much as a 'who cares'. The crime isn't in the book- the crime IS the book.
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I loved this book! I have not read a good court-room drama since I can’t remember when and this plot sucked me right in!
It was original and thought provoking, perhaps a little cliché at times and I suppose a unsurprising twist at the end, but none of that ruined it – it had me enthralled from start to almost finish.
I bet they make a movie out of this one!
Sorry to say, this one is pretty bad! I have enjoyed many of her more recent books, but this work has many shortcomings. The plot is full of holes and defies logic at times, and the narrator is not good.
After reading My Sister's Keeper, I thought I'd try another of Ms. Picoult's novels. I was not disappointed! It has a fantastic plot with a twist you will never see coming. It gives a view into Amish life I never knew. As with the first book I read I could not put it down. Plain Truth is a wonderful book and I would reccommend it to anyone who likes a written version of Law and Order.
I definitely enjoyed this book but I agree with some of the other comments here about the narrators. Especially the one who had the voice of the judge (kind of like nails scraping a chalkboard!) But besides that, I highly recommend this one!
This is a good book, no doubt about that, however I found the narrators to be a bit disapointing. I wouldn't let this keep you from chosing this book, but if you are someone that relies heavily on the voice you may want to preview the sample. I find the need for two women readers to be unnecessary and sometimes confusing. But overall I would say it was a good book.
"Plain truth - I was hooked from the start."
This was my first Jodi Picoult book so a novice apart from seeing my sister's keeper film.
I was hooked right from the start with this story which I found the narrators brought to life brilliantly and helped me get totally absorbed.
I'm fairly new to audio books which I can't see past now but I have to play samples as some narrators do put me off
The Amish storyline was very insightful and intriguing and although I'd seen a very interesting documentary on TV recently about Amish teens our lack of familiarity to the culture in the UK isn't an obstacle to understanding and affinity.
Saying that -I could've had 'a word' with Katy's dad at times but that was his 'culture'(and a wee bit of stubborn men being a pain in the backside! ha ha)
Ellie was a great character and I loved the progression of the Katy - Ellie relationship.
I was slightly apprehensive about what the end would bring after some reviews were disappointed but I had inkling throughout and was satisfied with the end.
I'm excited reading other reviews from JP fans that this isn't her best book and as I thought it was brilliant I can't wait to listen to more!
I highly recommend this audio book and hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
I'm a novice reviewer but would urge everyone to do it - Thanks to previous reviewers as they do help me in making title decisions.
Thanks for audio books also they are amazing - I love books but as a working mum with very little time for reading, audio books have been a god send and I can listen to them doing the chores, walking the dog, in the car and have even tuned in in tesco!!
I get so much more out of listening to a book than I have reading them over the years!
"Amish Mish Mash"
Not a bad story, but trading on the general public's view of a community which is traditionally peace-loving and isolationist. Hard for an English person to empathise with as there is no equivalent in the UK. Nevertheless, a gripping story to begin with, but too long overall and with an end that spoiled the whole thing for me.
"Picoult doing what she does best!"
This was my 6th in a stream of Picoult books; having become thoroughly hooked on her form and style. Although she does follow very similar structures in her writing, the subject matter is always something so clever, well researched and fresh that I feel that, not only do I enjoy the book, but feel enlightened afterwards. Though this is not my favourite of her works, I recommend it highly. The lead characters are utterly engaging, and I felt that sense of loss when finishing the story, which is telling of an author's job well done.
"A great read"
I couldn't stop listening.
The look into the Amish world was fascinating and the main characters really came alive.
The readers were also excellent.
"Just Plain Beautiful"
This was a gripping story, beautifully written and excellently narrated.
It was clear and flowed perfectly from one chapter to the next. The characters were distinct and always instantly recognisable. Jodi Picoult's lovely story-telling took me along with her and I could see the people and places so clearly in my mind - if it had been a paper book I would call it a real page-turner.
Instead, as an audio book it has kept me sane whilst packing up prior to our house move, for which I am eternally grateful!
The ending was unexpected, but left me with a sigh on my breath. Just lovely.
"I loved this book!"
Learing about the Amish ways of life I found endearing and interesting, as so the story with its take on the Law making it such a good read.
Loved this story. I'm a big fan of Jodi Picoult, although if you listen a lot they do get kind of predicable. This story was fascinating, it made me think of normal everyday things in a different way like the Amish. Excellently told and I didn't want it to end. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
"So Amish occasionally act like people"
I would definitely read more Picoult. I wasn't too keen on the accents ascribed to the Amish.
Jodi tackles life problems: I really enjoyed The Storyteller. In this book, I think she relied too much on the idiosyncratic Amish community as a focus and left the plot rather weak and predictable.
No. I don't think it warrants it. If Katie were not Amish, it would be boring.
Not Jodi's best, but okay travel reading.
"Restored my faith in audio books"
The story was great and very intriguing. If you like Jodie Picolt then you won't be disappointed. The depth of her understanding about the characters way of life as Amish was extremely detailed. It was done with thought and a real insight.
How it felt so credible and real. The narrator really connected with the characters and gave them a life.
Well worth a listen. Easy to follow most of the time but a really interesting, thought provoking listen.
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