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Free Study Guide-Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson-Book Notes
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CHAPTER 30

Summary

The jury is dismissed. Ishmael mulls over his notes. As he listened to Hatsue’s testimony, he was keenly aware of the private knowledge he had of her. Right now, he wanted her more than ever. Ishmael also knows that all he has to do is walk over to Ed Soames and show him the coast guard notes. He imagines Judge Fielding’s expression when he reads them and realizes their import. The freighter began heading out through Ship Channel at 1:42 and Carl’s watch stopped at 1:47.

On his way out of the courtroom, the electricity comes back on. He passes Nels Gudmundsson and tells him to get some sleep. Suddenly, Nels asks if he ever told Ishmael how much he liked his father.

Ishmael runs into the Imadas on the way out. Hatsue again tells him this trial is unfair and is happening because they are Japanese. She tells him that this should be on the front page of the newspaper. Ishmael tells her that if she wants to talk about it she can find him at his mother’s house. Ishmael looked at the destruction the snow caused and felt it recklessness. He felt his own recklessness as he thought of the truth that lay in his pocket.


Only one juror holds up the verdict. He believed there is reasonable doubt. Kabuo, he agreed is a liar, but that does not prove he is a murderer. The rest of the jurors go through the evidence and try to convince him, but he still has his doubts.

Notes

As the jury is dismissed to deliberate, the snow stops. The snowstorm through the trial has represented the contrasting testimony of the witness and the interpretation of the evidence, but now that the case is in the jury’s hands, the snow stops. However, the effects of the snow still remain: Cars remain overturned and trees down. Similarly, Kabuo’s life is still in a state of chaos, hanging in the balance. Ishmael sees beauty in the snow’s destruction and recklessness. Is it possible that he could find the beauty in destroying Kabuo’s life by withholding the truth? At this moment, Ishmael feels reckless and cannot determine what to do with this feeling. It is possible that he will be as reckless as the snow, having no regard for the consequences of his actions.

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