Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

A touching story about the transformative power of bringing mercy and justice to those who need it most, but who find it rarely.

Each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.

— Bryan Stevenson

Synopsis:

Bryan Stevenson is a lawyer committed to bringing justice to people that most desperately need it, and who have been incarcerated wrongly. Highlighting past and current atrocities in our criminal justice system, this book follows the story of Mr. Stevenson’s fight to bring justice and mercy to Walter McMillian, a black man on death row for a crime he insisted he didn’t commit.

Believing in capital punishment was one thing, but the realities of systematically killing someone who is not a threat are completely different.

— Bryan Stevenson

Review:

Held up against fictional novels pertaining to race, incarceration, and the law, Just Mercy was much more time- and energy-consuming and difficult to read. Perhaps when a horrendous chain of events is fictionalized, it sits better with us, allowing us to more easily shrug it off as imagination, and allowing us to sleep more peacefully at night thinking surely, we’re better than that.

But, no. Just Mercy is unflinching and exact. As non-fiction, it’s impossible to turn our minds away from these truths and shocking transgressions on people’s lives. This book causes us to lose sleep over the atrocities committed – past and present – on citizens of this country. We cannot look away, just because these things might not touch us personally. Instead, we must choose to allow these things to reach our hearts, turn our heads, and start to change the way we treat others – even those who have made bad decisions and that come from different backgrounds.

…mercy is just when it is rooted in hopefulness and freely given. Mercy is most empowering, liberating, and transformative when it is directed at the undeserving.

— Bryan Stevenson

I applaud Bryan Stevenson for the tireless work he and his team have done, and hope that laws and practices keep changing with forward progress. This is a book that should be mandatory reading in high school, college, and any profession that seeks to pass, uphold, and enforce the laws of this country. Read it. Share the story. Change the way you treat others.

 

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption
by Bryan Stevenson
Paperback, 368 pages
Published August 18th 2015 by Spiegel & Grau

Summary

This book causes us to lose sleep over the atrocities committed - past and present - on citizens of this country. We cannot look away, we must choose to allow these things to reach our hearts, turn our heads, and start to change the way we treat others.

— Cassie
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Comments

  • Leah

    January 10, 2020 at 1:27 pm
    Reply

    I agree. This book would be a fantastic one for teaching American history and civics. Thank you for sharing.

    • Cassie
      to Leah

      January 14, 2020 at 7:11 pm
      Reply

      Absolutely! Instead of reading some of those antiquated old books, these school mandatory reading lists should really be updated for current events!

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