Monday, September 29, 2014

Summer List Review {My Sister's Keeper + The Devils Knot}

This is the fifth installment of me reviewing a list of books and movies I set out to read, watch, and enjoy throughout the summer. You can check out my other posts in the following links. 
Summer Reading and Movie List
First Installment
Second Installment
Third Installment
Fourth Installment 

The next book I read was My Sister's Keeper. It was extremely enjoyable and quite thought provoking ethically and in general.

A quick synopsis before I begin:

Kate Fitzgerald was diagnosed with APL (a rare form of Luekemia) at the age of two. Her best chance of survival revolves around a bone marrow transplant, which neither her parents or older brother can provide as they are not genetically a match. Although the registry is an option, it's a risky one as generally not an exact match can be found and the process can require a long length of time—time Kate may or may not have.

Eventually her parents choose to have another child, a child that doctors have genetically chosen while it was still an embryo and then implanted via in-vitro. This is how Anna comes about.

At the age of 13, Anna files a law suit against her parents hoping that she can become medically emancipated. She has been through numerous medical treatments to provide things for Kate that her body cannot make correctly. She's donated her cord blood, bone marrow, and granulocytes multiple times among other things. But this time her parents want her to donate her kidney, which seems to be just one step too far.

Although Anna loves her sister, she is (understandably) tired of feeling like someone who is only important when Kate needs something.


I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the ending was extremely unpredictable on many numerous levels. At certain times during the book Anna seemed like a bratty teenager who merely wanted her way, but her real reasoning for filing the law suit was an extreme twist.

I originally read this book because of how much I loved the movie (I really really love Cameron Diaz to say the least), although I have to say even if you've seen the movie the book is COMPLETELY different. I'm not talking the book said Anna's hair was blonde and they cast a girl with brown hair like omg howcouldthey, I'm talking a 360 degree change on how the book ends. The movie also omits a romance subplot between Anna's lawyer and and Anna's guardian ad litem (who was actually not even in the movie as a character) and it also portrays Jesse (the older brother) as a different character than how he is portrayed in the book.

I did some research on how the book and movie got a drastically different ending and I found out that Jodi Picoult (the author), was none too pleased on this which is quite understandable. Apparently she met with the director where she made her feelings known that the ending was very important to her and an integral part of the movie and the director seemed to understand this. Then once filming began a fan of hers who worked on the set and was familiar with the book called her asking if she knew the ending was being changed. She of course did not and the director completely refused to talk to her or return or answer her phone calls and even went as far as kicking her off set.

After reading that information I must say my faith in Hollywood and book to film adaptions is rather low. I actually enjoyed the book ending a lot better than the movie ending as their conclusion is very predictable while the book's is not in the slightest.

Anyways, the book was fantastic and I highly recommend it. It provides a lot of ethical dilemmas and makes you really think and wonder.


I watched the movie, The Devil's Knot, which was a pretty good film I have to say.

First off, the movie already had a good mark in my book because Reese Witherspoon portrayed one of the main characters. I completely love Reese Witherspoon. Also I've noticed that a lot of horror movies rarely use well known actors, which often times results in shitty acting and conclusively shitty movies. So not only did I have Reese Witherspoon prancing across my TV, but also Colin Firth, whom I've seen a good bit of movies by him as well.

Anyways onto the plot line. Three young boys were found dead and murdered in a sort of swamp area in a small southern town. Eventually the town prosecutes a group of three teenage boys, despite a lack of evidence and contradictory statements.

The small Christian town believes the band of killers were all members of a cult and had killed the boys in a satanic ritual. Despite there being numerous leads that could potentially free the boys, the town's sherriff office does no such effort to look into anything that could prove their innocence.

It was a very fascinating and true story. I found it very amusing over the fact that the town chose not to admit evidence that could free the killers and did everything possible to make sure that they were convicted. The town wanted so badly to put the blame on a group of "satan worshipping heathens" who were merely scapegoats.

I do have to say it was a little irritating how little of an after story was given. The real life events took place in 1993 and the movie was realeased in 2013 so you would expect a lot to happen in the lapsed time of 20 years. But in actuality very little happened.

The three "killers" were eventually freed some time in the 2000s and after that not much of the story has progressed. I guess this isn't really the movies fault, but more like the legal system and the lack of people trying to find the boys' real killers.

It astounds me that this murder still goes unsolved 20 years later. There were a lot of extremely convincing and probable leads shown in the movie that they could have most certainly followed (I'd list them but I don't want to spoil the movie).

It just astounds me that a town that was so persistent to convict the "Satan worshippers" who "killed" the three young boys and yet when the legal system finally acknowledges that the boys clearly didn't do it, the town suddenly loses interest.

Overall, it was a great and thought provoking movie.

Have a fabulous day.


  1. I've been planning to read My Sister's Keeper for a couple of months now >.> I should really get started on the back logged reading list...

    1. It's a really good book! And believe me, I know what you mean about having a back logged reading list lol.