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Plain Truth [Paperback]

Jodi Picoult
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (195 customer reviews)

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Book Description

20 Mar 2008

The discovery of a dead infant in an Amish barn shakes Lancaster County to its core. But the police investigation leads to a more shocking disclosure: circumstantial evidence suggests that eighteen-year-old Katie Fisher, an unmarried Amish woman believed to be the newborn's mother, took the child's life.

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 into the world of those who live 'plain', Ellie must find a way to reach Katie on her terms.

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 comes back into her life.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks (20 Mar 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340960493
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340960493
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (195 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 212,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jodi Picoult received an A.B. in creative writing from Princeton University and a master's degree in education from Harvard. She is the author of seventeen novels including MY SISTER'S KEEPER(now a major film starring Cameron Diaz and Abigail Breslin), NINETEEN MINUTES, CHANGE OF HEART and HANDLE WITH CARE. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children. Learn more at

Product Description


'Jodi Picoult is not one to shy away from fictional controversy; in fact, the more tangled and messy a moral dilemma appears, the better she likes it. (Daily Mail)

Picoult has been incredibly successful in dissecting the pain that family members go through when faced with sensitive and emotive issues ( Daily Express)

Picoult, once again, grabs a razor-sharp issue and uses her brilliantly intricate pen to expose all the shades of grey with PERFECTION. (Cosmopolitan)

Book Description

An Amish teen gives birth in secret, then denies it when the baby's body is found. Jodi's Picoult bestseller is a fascinating portrait of a little-known way of life, and a gripping suspense novel.

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First Sentence
She had often dreamed of her little sister floating dead beneath the surface of the ice, but tonight, for the first time, she envisioned Hannah clawing to get out. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jodi Picoult Never Fails to Deliver 8 April 2006
By Mr. D. Clark VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the fourth novel by Jodi Picoult which I have read, and I've enjoyed all of them. "Plain Truth" I would place right up there with "My Sister's Keeper" which is praise indeed from me.
All of the familiar Picoult ingredients are here, a lawyer with a less than perfect personal life, a sensational court case, and a family of good and decent people who are seemingly being torn apart by the secrets which they have had to hide from each other.
Having said that, I would hate you to think that this is just formula writing, when it is so much more. For Katie Fisher, the girl accused in the court case, is a member of an Amish community. I'm guessing that for the majority of readers, as it was for me, your only idea of the Amish is what you'll have seen in the Harrison Ford movie "Witness". Ellie, the brilliant but flawed defence lawyer, has to live with Katie and her family in the weeks leading up to the trial, and to come to terms with living in this community. For me this gives the novel great texture, and you are steadily drawn into this world, with all of its attractions, and all of its drawbacks too.
If you've read any of Jodi Picoult's novels before, you'll know that she is a master of manipulating your emotions and sympathies, and this novel is no different in that respect. You are simultaneously both invited to feel sympathy for Katie, and at the same time challenged to confront serious moral issues, although I won't tell you what these are in advance for fear of spoiling the plot for you.
Jodi Picoult is a great novelist. Her prose is clear - at times quite stark, at times almost poetical, but never less than riveting. She is a great storyteller. But be warned. Once you start reading this, empty your schedule for a couple of days, because you won't want to put it down.
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic reading 27 Feb 2005
By A Customer
This is the first Jodi Picoult book I have read and I was hooked from the first page. I have spent many sleepless nights not wanting to put the book down as it keeps you guessing almost to the last page. Jodi Picoult knows her stuff, from the Amish life, to courtroom drama, this book is a must. It is so beautifully written I did not want the book to end. I haven't enjoyed a book so much in a long time. It grips you from beginning to end. Read it I guarantee you won't be disappointed.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant insight into another World 7 Aug 2006
THis is my third JP. Having read comments from other reviewers that they can become formulaic after you've read 2 or 3 I now think that is unfair. OK, there's a lawyer in each story, but apart from that.. the stories are totally, totally different. In Plain Truth, the reader is given the opportunity to find out about The Amish World at the same time as reading a brilliantly well-written and sensitive story.

Am I the only reader who didn't enjoy My Sister's Keeper the most?! I prefered Plain Truth and Salem Falls both.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Enjoyable Read 17 May 2006
This is the first novel I have read by Jodi Picoult and I have to say that, had i just read the back cover in a bookshop, i probably wouldn't have done so. A friend gave me this book and, trusting her judgement when it comes to books, I read it and i have to say I was really glad that I had.

Set in an Armish community, this novel poses not only legal quanderies for Ellie Hathaway, the defence attorney, but also gives the reader a small insight into this alternative way of life without shoving it down your throat.

I read this book in about a week, which for me is super speedy (I am not the world's fastest reader) and now can't wait to get started on another by the same author.

This is certainly worth a read - give it a go.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, excellent and thought provoking 3 Sep 2000
By A Customer
Having been told that this was really a woman's book I approached reading it with some diffidence. How wrong I was! This is the first Jodi Picoult book I have read. If this is anything to go by she is a brilliant story teller. She tells the story of events both before and after the death of a new born baby in an Amish community in a way that gives the reader a real understanding of the Amish. At the same time the plot drives forward with Picoult holding the reader as skillfully as any acknowledged thriller writer. This is a quality novel, and at the same time a thriller.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 11 Jan 2006
I was first introduced to Jodi Picoult with My Sister's Keeper and have now read 5 of her books with 2 more on order. Plain Truth, as with all the others is excellently written and extremely enjoyable, the authoress obviously does her homework! The only critiscm I would have of her writing is that they all follow a similar writing structure, where she sticks to her obviously extremely successful tried and tested direction! Overall though, personally I feel the quality of the writing, the characters and the research undetaken to allow her to base her work on such sensitive topics, such as the Amish Community with Plain Truth, means that I will continue to be a fan!
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally Riveting 23 Jun 2005
By Siobhan
This is the second novel by Jodi Piccoult that I have read, the first being My Sister's Keeper. Just like that novel, I adored this one. Plain Truth is intriguing and though-provoking. If there is anything I would change, it would be that the surprise ending is a little rushed - I would have preferred to have a little time to be shocked and stunned before the book was over. Nevertheless, that didn't stop it from being an amazing read.
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