dreamsanddedications

Review: Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

Nineteen MinutesNineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This isn’t my favorite Picoult novel but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
Picoult has a great ability to embroider her narrative with only essential comparisons and details. She uses examples and phrases that pull at your emotions in a deeply evocative way.
The story is about a young teenage boy called Peter who sacrifices his own future by seeking revenge on his high school bullies; ultimately shooting them (and others) dead in a final tragic act of redemption.
But the most interesting aspect of this story, for me, was in the exploration of the quietly ‘displaced’ victims. Those who cared for him and became permanently scarred and affected by his actions. His childhood friend Josie, the girl he grew up with (and fell for) but she later ignored Peter to stay in favor with the more ‘acceptable’ high school crowd. Also Lacy, Peter’s mother; a woman who had already lost one child in a tragic incident and is now losing her second. And then there is Peter himself, a sensitive, bright and caring young teenager who was viewed in high school as a social ‘misfit,’ to become a detached cold-blooded murderer. It is the reaction of the whole town towards the young murderer, and Picoult’s effective way of showing us the viewpoint from every characters angle that really scrapes at your emotions.
The meaningful essence of this book stays with you long after reading. It reminds you that people are never just black and white and that sadly, even the perpetrators of some very hideous crimes are also ‘victims’ too.

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