When Seeing Isn't Believing
“Seeing is believing” is often used in everyday conversation. But what happens when what you “see” is not true? What happens when your judgement robs someone of their freedom for more than a decade? The story of Jennifer Thompson and Ronald Cotton, looks at the power of our words and decisions. Picking Cotton is a fascinating book that dives into the complex nature of human memory while revealing the difficult process of grace and forgiveness.
Jennifer Thompson is a model student at Elon University, hoping to graduate as a 4.0 student and then marrying her boyfriend. Ronald Cotton is an average citizen living in Burlington, North Carolina. Taking only one night to change the course of both of their lives forever, tragedy strikes as Jennifer is attacked and brutally raped by an house intruder. Barely escaping and saving her life, Jennifer is determined to catch the criminal with the help of the local police. Ronald is arrested, but he claims to be innocent. Cotton works endlessly to prove his innocence while Thompson vows he is the man who deserves to spend the rest of his life in jail.
Why You’ll Want to Keep Reading
Picking Cotton is written with alternating narrations, with both Jennifer and Ronald telling their perspective of the crime. The same incident told by two different voices sheds light on the emotions of both victims and the complexity of the crime. Jennifer is absolutely sure about her judgement but Ronald swears he didn’t commit the crime. The mystery of whether Ronald deserves to be thrown into prison is enough for you to keep turning page after page. As you immerse yourself into the case and more evidence surfaces, you become drawn in, hoping to find closure to the mystery. When it seems as if the case has reached a dead end, another piece of information is discovered, keeping the story unexpectable. Besides being a great mystery, Picking Cotton also challenges your perceptions on the human memory and the validity of your own judgements, while provoking thought on the American justice system. It is a remarkable story that teaches the valuable lessons of hope and forgiveness resulting from an unbelievable friendship.