Overall rating and opinion of Defending Jacob

Discuss the September 2015 book of the month Defending Jacob by William Landay
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amybo82
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Re: Overall rating and opinion of Defending Jacob

Post by amybo82 » 20 Sep 2015, 20:45

I thought it was okay. The story was interesting, and I liked the "did he or didn't he" feeling throughout. However, the way it was written really drove me nuts! I couldn't stand the courtroom jargon and the teens saying, "Like, like, like!" If I had to read the word, "Objection!" one more time, I was going to lose it. I guess I get too distracted by language sometimes, but for me, that really took away from my enjoyment of the book.
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Post by quadbrookie » 24 Sep 2015, 20:39

I enjoyed Defending Jacob very much! I give it a 3-star review. It was a book that I probably wouldn't have completed if I had not been participating in the BOTM discussion. The book started to drag out, where it started to almost feel as a chore then, it would pick back up again.

My favorite parts of this book are how Leslie, Jacob's mother, conducts herself and tries to keep as positive and upbeat for her son. She really tries to do the things

The following are reasons of what I didn't like about the book it stalled in parts, it would talk about things that were to come. Pretty much the main character, Andy, would get ahead of himself a multitude of times. The first couple of times it wasn't that bad but, then it became an irritating habit. The author seemed to be trying to hard to sound like a teenager. Not every young person or teenager uses the phrase, "like, you know". It appeared almost everytime one of Jacob's classmates were talked to, or "questioned"!
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Post by V_bansal2912 » 27 Sep 2015, 05:11

I am completely loving the book...still reading though...!!

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Post by quadbrookie » 28 Sep 2015, 20:44

The entire reason I gave it a three was because my mouth literally dropped open at the end!
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Post by FoxyReader1988 » 07 Oct 2015, 02:09

gali wrote:Please use this topic to discuss your overall opinion of the September 2015 book of the month. If you have not already, please add your rating for Defending Jacob using the book's page on Bookshelves.

How did you like the book? What do you like most? What do you like least? Would you recommend the book for others to read? Why or why not?

-- September 3rd, 2015, 4:19 pm --

I am reading it right now and enjoy it so far, though some parts do drag out. It certainly raises some interesting questions (such as how far a parent would go to protect his child). I am also curios to find out whether the kid is guilty or not. 8)
I have been looking for a copy of Defending Jacob but I cannot seem to find a copy of the book. The local library says they have several copies, but all are checked out. :evil:

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Post by amybo82 » 07 Oct 2015, 17:26

Maybe all of the copies are checked out by other members of OBC! If you live in a place that has a reciprocal card privilege with another local library (university, public, school, etc.), you can go to Worldcat worldcat.org/title/defending-jacob-a-no ... ef_results to see if someone else has it. Or, your library should have a waiting list for you to get on. Hope this helps!
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Post by FoxyReader1988 » 07 Oct 2015, 23:32

amybo82 wrote:Maybe all of the copies are checked out by other members of OBC! If you live in a place that has a reciprocal card privilege with another local library (university, public, school, etc.), you can go to Worldcat worldcat.org/title/defending-jacob-a-no ... ef_results to see if someone else has it. Or, your library should have a waiting list for you to get on. Hope this helps!
Thank you. I will give this a try.

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Post by Artiste8 » 08 Oct 2015, 13:23

I loved the book and loved the ending. It was a very different book. I did find that the story dragged just like it can drag in a courtroom. Still not sure who did it.

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Post by hsimone » 08 Oct 2015, 20:47

I definitely agree with the majority that has been said here. There parts that dragged, and all I kept thinking was "come on, let's go..." However, I did like that the author makes the reader question whether Jacob killed Ben or not. I had mixed feelings about this throughout.

Being a teacher and definitely wanting kids in the near future, this book made me think about how some people are in denial of how their children behave. I feel if I had a child who kept hurting others or kids kept getting hurt near my child, I wouldn't just say "oh, he'll grow out it". It's not that simple. It's so critical to be aware of issues your children may have and see what help you can get before it's too late. I see parents not getting the help their children need from the beginning at a young age, and then the result as teenagers, all the time. This aspect of the book intrigued me.

Overall, I rated Defending Jacob 3 out of 4 stars, and would recommend it for those who like suspenseful novels.
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Post by zeldas_lullaby » 08 Oct 2015, 22:00

Hsimone, you raise an interesting issue, but what about sociopathology? The concept states that 1% of the population are simply born with no conscience. Most don't become serial killers, but they still don't empathize or have remorse. There is some evidence that it can occur if a baby is abused during his first year of life, but there's also evidence that some people are simply born that way, and having even an ideal childhood won't "undo" it.

I guess this goes to the book's issue of genetics, because maybe it can run in families--who knows? (Of course, it's still not a valid legal argument.)

I see what you're saying more specifically, though; that behavioral issues should never just be shrugged off. I have a family member who everyone always said that about. "Oh, she'll grow out of it." :roll: Well, she's an adult now, and if I make her mad, she actually becomes violent. You're onto something there. Parental apathy is disgusting. :o

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Post by ktrum » 09 Oct 2015, 08:23

I agree with all the comments noted above but one thing really, really bothered me and I finished the book about three weeks ago and still think about many of the issues raised in the story. Andy found the knife that his son had in his room and he got rid of it!!! This is a man who was always on the "right side" of the law and to me, if he thought his son didn't do it, why would he throw the knife away. Did he subconsciously think his son had used this knife to commit the murder; otherwise, why throw it away...it makes Jake look guilty to me.

Also, after all this family went through and the things they found out about their son (which they never knew before) why not get him some help? I know that Andy was in constant denial throughout this book, so I understand, a little, why he would think that his son did not need any help, but his wife, who ends up taking things into her own hands at the end, could have tried to push a little more to get their son some help. This may have saved 2, possibly three murders from occurring. These thoughts have been in my mind since reading the book so this is another reason I enjoyed it immensely.

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Post by quadbrookie » 09 Oct 2015, 16:23

@ktrum I just knew Jacob's mother would take him to get help. I can't remember what the additional diagnosis was to the MAOA but, the psychiatrist said it was readily treatable. I thought his mother would have taken him ASAP!
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Post by hsimone » 09 Oct 2015, 17:33

zeldas_lullaby wrote:Hsimone, you raise an interesting issue, but what about sociopathology? The concept states that 1% of the population are simply born with no conscience. Most don't become serial killers, but they still don't empathize or have remorse. There is some evidence that it can occur if a baby is abused during his first year of life, but there's also evidence that some people are simply born that way, and having even an ideal childhood won't "undo" it.

I guess this goes to the book's issue of genetics, because maybe it can run in families--who knows? (Of course, it's still not a valid legal argument.)

I see what you're saying more specifically, though; that behavioral issues should never just be shrugged off. I have a family member who everyone always said that about. "Oh, she'll grow out of it." :roll: Well, she's an adult now, and if I make her mad, she actually becomes violent. You're onto something there. Parental apathy is disgusting. :o
I didn't realize the data/information about sociopathology. I knew it existed, but didn't know what percentage of people are born with it. 1% doesn't seem like a lot, but it definitely is.

Thank you! That is exactly what I am saying about not ignoring clear, red flags when children are young. It's easier and better to get them help as soon as possible. Once children reach their teen years or even older, they may be more resistant towards help and therefore it would be harder to reach them. Not that it would be impossible, but just harder.
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Post by zeldas_lullaby » 09 Oct 2015, 19:28

:-) Yeah... don't quote me on the 1% thing, but I'm fairly certain that that's actually what it is. Most of them are the mean people we know at work, and that sort of thing!! :o

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Post by TrishaAnn92 » 10 Oct 2015, 20:30

I rate it a 3 out of 4 stars. I had a hard time getting into the story but the end was definitely something I was not expecting. Not a book I am likely to read again but I would recommend it.
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