The Kindest Thing – Cath Staincliffe
Title: The Kindest Thing
Author: Cath Staincliffe
Publisher: Robinson Publishing
My rating: ★★★✫✫
I found this book on one of the book fairs I have been to in 2015. ‘What would you sacrifice for love?’ is the question on the cover. Well, I was wondering what the main character was going to do and what she had to sacrifice for love. The theme of this novel is pretty heavy, but I do love a bit of drama.
What the book is about
What would you do? When Deborah reluctantly helps her beloved husband, Neil, end his life and conceals the truth, she is charged with his murder. As the trial unfolds and her daughter Sophie testifies against her, Deborah, still reeling from grief, fights to defend her actions. Twelve jurors hold her fate in their hands – and if found guilty she will serve a life sentence. But is the assisted suicide of a person you love murder?
What I think about the book
This is not a very thick book and I thought I would finish it in just a couple of days. That wasn’t the case. For some reason it took me forever (or 11 days) to finish it. I didn’t really enjoy the way it was written. I just wanted to know what would happen, but the book was quite slow paced and it seemed to drag on.
The Kindest Things goes back and forth between things from the past and things that are happening right now. In the past we learn about Deborah’s family, how she lost both her mum and dad, how she has met Neil and what their relationship was like, but also about Neil’s illness and the troubles they get into with their son. Deborah has got a ton of drama to deal with in her life. It hardly seems fair. Here and now she is standing trial for helping Neil. Guilty or not guilty?
Though I knew that Deborah did help him (which would make her guilty), I tried to sympathize with her. What would I decide if I would be part of a jury? I had no idea. I mean, I would understand it if Neil would want to end his life before his suffering became too much. I just don’t think that I could do what Deborah did. Not like this. I would try to find another (more legal?) way to help Neil. Maybe that’s because we’ve got more options here in the Netherlands? I am not sure how this would work in other countries. So I could not entirely feel sorry for Deborah.
I finished the book and it wasn’t bad, but it also wasn’t as good or exciting as I thought it would be. Therefore I will just give it three stars.