Books are cheaper than heroin, but they DO add up....

Amy, Carrie, Chanin and Sarah buy (and read and review) their own stuff. They've been known to shop around from dealer to dealer looking for the best price. If you're interested in slipping them something to try out, just contact us.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

My streak continues.  Which streak, you ask?  The one where I forget to post on time?  Yes.  They one where I review another book that could be construed as depressing?  Again, yes.  What can I say?  At least I am consistent.

Jodi Picoult is one of my very favorite authors.  I feel funny saying that though, because I have only read two of her books.  The first one I read was The Pact .  I don't have much patience for teen angst/immature romance (think Twilight), but those themes did not bother me at all in that book.  I think the fact that the author writes in such a matter-of-fact way is the key for me.  The downside to her matter-of-fact style of writing is that I have to take LONG breaks in between her books.  They wear me out.  I am emotionally invested from page one and I can't get let go until the very last page.  After I read one of her books, I need to read at least four or five books from different authors before I can read another one. 

I read Nineteen Minutes about a year ago.  Does that tell you anything?  I still think about it.  Now that my children are getting older and I hear stories of questionable behavior in their schools, I think about this book even more.  I decided to review it after I saw a story on the news last night about a child from my own neighborhood that is being bullied at school.  It reminded me of this book and triggered a lot of the same emotions I had while reading it.

The synopsis from the book website says:  In Sterling, New Hampshire, 17-year-old high school student Peter Houghton has endured years of verbal and physical abuse at the hands of classmates. His best friend, Josie Cormier, succumbed to peer pressure and now hangs out with the popular crowd that often instigates the harassment. One final incident of bullying sends Peter over the edge and leads him to commit an act of violence that forever changes the lives of Sterling’s residents.  

So what did I think?  I think Jodi Picoult can make every situtaion feel like it is happening to you.  In those nineteen minutes, I was the kid being bullied, angry and embarrassed from being teased over and over again.  I was one of the victims, scared and huddled in the corner of the gym.  I was the mom/judge presiding over the ensuing case, trying to be fair, yet torn that the fate of a young teen was in my hands.  I could put myself into each of these situations so easily because of the direct way it was written.  I love that in a book.

Second, the book was nonstop "go."  I would finish a chapter and literally take a deep breath before I started the next one. I couldn't wait to start the next chapter, but I needed a breather to get up the gumption to do so.  The book was full of real-life action, real-life emotions and real-life drama.  There was never a dull chapter or character that I felt I wanted to rush through to get to the next one.  I love that in a book, too.

I powered through this book in two days. And I'm pretty sure I neglected all of my mom duties while doing so.  That being said, I think it's time for another Jodi Picoult novel.  Do we have any  Jodi Picoult fans out there?  What are some of the emotions you experience from reading her books?  Let us know what you think.

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