For those who have read Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult, what do you think the purpose of this novel is?Basically, why did the author write this book and what message is she trying to convey? I...

For those who have read Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult, what do you think the purpose of this novel is?

Basically, why did the author write this book and what message is she trying to convey?

I think she's trying to tell us about the court system and how everyone has the chance to change/start over, but I want to hear what other people think about this book. Thanks!

Expert Answers
ame549 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This novel questions our conceptions of people based on first impressions and prejudices. When Shay was discovered with the bodies of the stepfather and little girl, he was presumed guilty based on the fact that he was a drifter when the family first met him, and he wasn't socially acceptable because of his mannerisms, such as the fact that he talked very little due to his stutter. The stepfather was never a suspect, because he was a police officer and therefore, in the minds of the others, he had their trust. Shay was more complex than people thought, and he didn't defend himself because he knew nobody would accept his explanation that he found the stepfather abusing the little girl. The message is that people aren't always what they seem and you can't judge others based on first impressions.