Thursday, October 16, 2008

Nineteen Minutes, by Jodi Picoult

Nineteen Minutes is a riveting novel about the grueling experiences a boy faces as he grows up in the small town of Sterling. The story is centered around several characters that the boy, Peter, is somehow connected to. It is about a school shooting that lasts for nineteen minutes at Sterling High, conducted by Peter himself.

Starting from the first chapter, people jump to conclusions as I did myself. How can this boy, who is barely an adult, even think of committing such a crime that will ruin his future as well as everyone else present at the school? He must be psychotic, have some sort of mental disease, or have no parental guidance. The answer is very complicated and heart breaking, but it can be found within the confines of this brilliant novel about human emotions and sacrifices.

The novel raises many ethical issues familiar to all of us. Jodi Picoult manages to raise awareness as well as deliver a masterpiece that is crucial for people running away from deep understanding of relationships.

Do not read Nineteen Minutes expecting a fast-paced thrill ride, but read this beautiful novel for its subtle take on love that gives hope for a better future rather than a happily-ever-after.

-Reviewed by Sayonika M. Grade 10