Mercy by Jodi Picoult

Book Project by Adriana Printy

Theme #1-Family First

Jamie comes to Wheelock, Massachusetts in order to kill his terminally ill wife, Maggie. After doing that he goes to the police station and confesses to the police chief, also his cousin, Cameron MacDonald. Cam then questioned and arrested him. After booking him, Cam went and secretly hired a lawyer for Jamie. After the hearing, Jamie's bail was set at $5, which Allie paid. Jamie's uncle, Angus, allowed him to stay in his house with him, even though the town was looking down on him. Allie also had no shame in taking Jamie out into public with her. Another thing that their family did for Jamie was give him a spot in the family burial plot to bury his deceased wife, Maggie. This decision, made by Cam's mom Ellen, really set Cam off. He began to have a little more hatred for Jamie as each day went on, but later saved him from being shot in a diner. Allie made numerous trips to Jamie's home to find out things about him and Maggie from people that seen them on a regular basis, and even said she would testify in court. When the trial starts, all of Jamie's family, except for Cam, show up to support him. It wasn't until towards the end of the trial that Cam realized that Jamie wasn't too bad after all and decided to go support him. When Jamie is found not guilty on all counts, his family showers him with cheers and he breathes a huge sigh of relief.

Theme #2-Relationships are 70/30

When Allie was talking to Jamie one day, he made a comment about relationships. He said that one person puts 70% into it and the other person puts 30% in. He explained that one person falls in love with the other person first, causing them to try much harder in the relationship. After having this conversation, Allie starts to pick up on little things and realizes that she's the one putting 70% into her relationship. For example, she takes Cam new flowers to work every week and suffers through the activities that Cam wants to do, even though she hates being outside. Later on Allie takes a trip to Jamie's home in order to help his case. While she's gone, Cam has an affair with Mia, Allie's assistant. Due to having a guilty conscience, he tries to make up for it by buying a present for Allie: a stained glass window. He knows Allie will love it, but everything in it seems to remind him of Mia. Cam doesn't pay much attention to Allie when she gets back from her trip, but does everything in his power to get Mia to come back to town after she left, due to feeling guilty about their affair. Cam hires a private investigator to track Mia down and tells her that she should come back to Wheelock, which she does, and he finds every excuse to be with her, such as leaving work early and skipping Thanksgiving with his family, or randomly showing up at Allie's shop. They continue this affair for quite a while until Allie found out. When Allie found out about it, she went from being that one that put 70% into the relationship to putting 0% in. Cam then begins to put as much effort in as possible to get Allie back. In the end, Allie realizes that she loves Cam enough to forgive him and they live happily ever after.

How The Themes Relate

Although there was tension in Cam and Allie's relationship before Jamie came into the picture, I think that him coming to town really added to the load. Allie wanted to do everything to save Jamie because she believed him to be a ¨mercy murderer¨ and wanted to help him because he was family, whereas Cam didn't seem to really care all that much. I believe that this gave Allie a wake up call on the fact that she was putting twice as much effort into their marriage than Cam was. This later caused many problems due to having different priorities, but they all made it through the ups and downs to live happily ever after.