On My Bedside

A few weekends ago I started and finished Defending Jacob by William Landay.  The fact that it was set in a community very much like mine with families that sounded very much like ours was both thought provoking and terrifying.  I don’t want to give anything away, but I struggled with the end – it left a few major unanswered questions and hurt my heart just a little too much.

Defending Jacob
Good Reads says “Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney in his suburban Massachusetts county for more than twenty years. He is respected in his community, tenacious in the courtroom, and happy at home with his wife, Laurie, and son, Jacob. But when a shocking crime shatters their New England town, Andy is blindsided by what happens next: His fourteen-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student.  Every parental instinct Andy has rallies to protect his boy. Jacob insists that he is innocent, and Andy believes him. Andy must. He’s his father. But as damning facts and shocking revelations surface, as a marriage threatens to crumble and the trial intensifies, as the crisis reveals how little a father knows about his son, Andy will face a trial of his own—between loyalty and justice, between truth and allegation, between a past he’s tried to bury and a future he cannot conceive.  Award-winning author William Landay has written the consummate novel of an embattled family in crisis—a suspenseful, character-driven mystery that is also a spellbinding tale of guilt, betrayal, and the terrifying speed at which our lives can spin out of control.”

I keep a running list of must-reads, so send me what you’ve got!


  1. I read it awhile ago, and it was disturbing. Our book club is reading it this month. I tried to sway the ladies to try Kristin Hannah. She is my favorite author!

  2. I also read the book Defending Jacob and was extremely disturbed by the ending! I know you don't want to give away the ending, but would love to know if you thought guilty or not. Would have enjoyed discussing it with someone after reading it. Recently read What Alice Forgot, and loved it! The characters were so endearing, that I actually missed them when upon completion.

  3. I read Defending Jacob and found it to be very similar to the book, The Bad Seed. The Bad Seed was made into a movie in 1957 and it is truly a movie that you will never forget. Defending Jacob had the same storyline only with modern technology. Most of the people in my book group loved Defending Jacob, me not so much. Have you read Gone Girl? It is another book that got lots of chatter in our book group.

  4. I haven't read that and I don't know if I will. I usually read before bed so I tend to stay away from nightmare provoking books! Thanks for the recap!

  5. Think I may stay away from this one! Just finished The 19th Wife. Have you read it? I read it in a couple of days, and really liked it.
    Working on making Expectation Charts right now. Sigh. Can't find my mitre saw... :) Happy Monday to you!

  6. Jackie - I'll look into Kristin Hannah as I don't think I've ready anything by her.

    Arlene - I do have Gone Girl on my list. Can't wait!!

    Gabi - I also have the 19th Wife on my list. Hope you found that saw...I'm in awe of your power tool skills :-)

  7. I want to recommend two very good books that are easy reads. The Mailbox and The Guestbook by Marybeth Whalen. She writes similar to Nicholas Sparks. I enjoyed each one very much!


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