Shine

A Short Story
Narrated by: Audra McDonald
Series: Ruth Jefferson, Book 0.5
Length: 1 hr and 5 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (996 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Jodi Picoult tackles issues of race and privilege in this original short story, a prequel to her novel Small Great Things.

In "Shine", the master storyteller and New York Times best-selling author of Leaving Time and My Sister's Keeper introduces listeners to the unforgettable Ruth Brooks. Today is Ruth's first day of third grade at Dalton. The prestigious institution on New York's Upper East Side couldn't be more different from her old school in Harlem. Despite being the smartest girl in her grade, Ruth suspects that her classmates and teachers only see her dark skin. She also notices that Christina, the daughter of her mother's employer, treats Ruth very differently when they're hanging out with the popular girls rather than playing together. Ruth must navigate between two worlds, never losing sight of the dreams she has for herself - in hopes that someday someone will see her for who she really is. 

©2016 Jodi Picoult (P)2016 Random House Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Short story prequel to Small Great Things

SHINE is the prequel to Jodi Picoult's 2016 blockbuster novel Small Great Things. In the novel Ruth Jefferson is an adult and a nurse. In this short story she is a third grader who shows the characteristics of the later adult. The short story can be skipped, but Small Great Things is an incredibly wonderful novel which I strongly recommend.

7 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Empathy provoking!

A lovely story of coping in a environment designed for others. How unfair and cruel children (and adults!) can be to those who are different! The narrator did an excellent job. I was sad that the story was ended.

2 people found this helpful

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Outstanding!

This story takes me back years ago when I was a third grader... I wanted a yellow ponytail. I thought - "myself if I could only have a yellow ponytail that swung when I walked, I would be just as good". Well, I'm 70 now and I still have short black hair and I know I am "just as good"! Bravo Jodi!!

7 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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ugh pandering

a story about black women by a white woman. it rang very false. I was not a fan.

1 person found this helpful

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I want more!!!

do the entire book...I want so much more...Reading about her as an adult and then as a child is so wonderful...

1 person found this helpful

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Well Stated Reality

The author tells a story unfamiliar to me in my personal experience, but it relays a truth so very familiar to others in our society. Brava.

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I want more Ruth!

I want more Ruth! This was so enjoyable to listen to in every way. I really hope that we get more of these characters, and will definitely be looking for more stories told by this wonderful narrator.

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Too Short

This was a great story, but I think it should have been a full fledged book. I love Jodi Picoult. This one was just too short. It was like someone chopped it off without delving more into the characters and story.

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shine

I love every minute of it. it is real to my own experiences in school when I was a child

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Only 1 hour!

Great story! Make sure you realize it's a short story, only one hour of listening!!