A Lesson Before Dying Summary
Overall “A Lesson Before Dying” is an outstanding book. At first I had a different perspective on the book, but after reading it and taking the time to understand it; it’s a book that has a valuable lesson at the end that can teach many people. The main characters in the story are Grant and Jefferson. The story starts off by Jefferson heading to the store and while walking two young black men name Brother and Bear offer him a ride. Jefferson accepts the offer and the three men head to the store. While at the store Brother and Bear get in a huge altercation with the clerk. During the altercation Brother and Bear begin a shootout. All the sudden everybody is dead and Jefferson is left alone in the store. Jefferson was confused and frightened so he took a shot of whiskey to calm down his nerves. While frightened, he looks around and notices that the cash register is wide open and full of money. He knows it’s wrong, but he realizes that he’s going to have to run; so he decides to stuff his pockets with money and while he nearly reaches the door two white walk in.
While in court the prosecutors are racist and declare that Jefferson was there to intentionally rob the store. They believe that Jefferson took the money and celebrated by drinking whiskey. While the jury discusses over and over about Jefferson situation they come to conclusion that Jefferson is found guilty of robbery and first degree murder. An will be sentence to death by execution.
During Jefferson jail time his grandmother Mrs. Emma comes up with the idea to get Grant to go to the jail and to talk to Jefferson that he is a man not a hog like what the white people called him. Grant debates with Mrs. Emma and tells her that he doesn’t believe that he is the right person for the task. While he keeps thinking about Mrs. Emma offers his girlfriend Vivian encourages and convinces him to go. During his visits you can tell what time period of the story was by how they separate inmates. Throughout the beginning of Grants visits he doesn’t get anywhere with Jefferson. Jefferson ignores him, doesn’t talk to him, he doesn’t even eat the food he brings him. While Grant wants to give up and stop visiting him his girlfriend Vivian influences him to keep going.