Fantastic book incredibly well written. Harking back to "Lord of the Flies," Picoult explores the dynamics of unsupervised group behavior among school children. It deals with all the themes that screech "inappropriate" for a young audience (F word numerous times, teen sex, violence, etc.) but it may be the most appropriate book for students and teachers and parents concerned with bullying and the related social dynamics. The story seems so well researched I had a hard time remembering that it is fictional. An expert witness for the defense of the Columbine-style shooter asks, (paraphrasing) "What is the most vivid memory you have of your school days? If you're like 95 out of 100 people, that memory revolves around your humiliation at the hands of a bully." (I have to paraphrase because my copy stays loaned out to fellow educators.) And what are the consequences of unchecked chronic bullying? At its most extreme: Columbine.
I've read a few Jodi Picoult books which have been a bit predictable. However, this book truly kept me engaged through the 450 pages. I had just about moved on from the author, but I will now be looking into move of her books. Enjoy!
Seeing as my son is going through some minor bully issues right now, this book kind of freaked me out, honestly *laugh*. It was a good book, standard Picoult stuff. This one felt like it might have been a little too long though and could have used a few cuts.
I did see the ending coming a mile away. I wonder if I've read too many Picoult books? LOL.
Disturbing perspective on a school shooting. Helps you understand events that may lead up to children that become killers. If bullying is a problem or has been a problem in your school or in your family you will want to read this.
This is another excellent Jodi Picoult book!!! I could not stop reading this book!!! The whole way through the book you assume it will end a certain way and when you get to the end you get the thrill of finding out that it doesn't end how you thought it would. I would recommend this book to everyone who have children. It makes you think, while at the same time shows you just how harmful peer pressure and being accepted in this world affects us all in different ways.
Peter Houghton had an extremely normal life. Raised in a normal town. Went to a normal high school. But he was always different. And because of that, he gets picked on.
And then he retaliates.
Many people are killed, and many more injured.
I don't want to give the whole story away, so just read this because it's so real. Everything that happens in NINETEEN MINUTES could easily happen in an actual high school (and, in many cases, already has).
I don't know what to say other then this is an amazing read. It is written in such a talented way that it could only be pulled off by Jodi Picoult.
Picoult did a decent job explaining both sides of this ethical/moral dilemma situation. What she neglected to do is to make it a gray area, as is her usual style. Killing 12 people (most not even involved) and injuring 19 others because you were bullied is kind of a black and white scenario.
Characteristically, Picoult creates terrible mothers who fumble around, trying to undo years of neglect and/or indifference to their childrens' lives. They both remained in complete ignorance of their childrens' lives. I felt sorry for the kids, victims of poor parenting. It should be the parents on trial here.
Well...I just finished reading this book. I finished it in about 2 days. When I started this book it was really good, then, for me, it started dragging. I ended up finishing it because I wanted to see where it would lead, but really the whole thing seemed really cliche. It goes into the typical high school scene that we hear everyday about jocks, nerds, preps, ect.
I am a big fan of Jodi Picoult, but this book was not one of my favorites. It seemed to me like the author was really trying to get the reader to see from the shooter's point of view. Throughout the book I could just not side with him on his reasons for the school shooting. I felt like the author paid too much attention to the shooter instead of the victims. In my opinion, just because he was picked on does not give him any reason or excuse as to what he did. I guess that is why this book was so hard for me to read, because I just did not agree with what the author was trying to get us to see.
I didn't totally dislike the book though, but this was my least favorite book of hers. I will still continue to read more of her work because so far, her other books have been great.
What a great book!!! It was the first time I had read anything by this author, so it took me a minute to get used to her writting style, but a great read. It keeps you interested on so many levels. What a great, complex story.
I have not read all of Jodi Picoult books. This one is my favorite of the ones I have read. It is a page turner; interesting, engaging, and makes the reader stop and think about the issues that teenagers face growing up. If you did not understand how much bullying happens in schools, especially high schools then this will convince you, and certainly remind you of Columbine. However, as much as I think this book is about bullying behavior, and the possible consequences of this kind of behavior, I think the "quieter", overlooked issue is about teenage girls. This book is also about how girls lives are centered around being attractive, popular and how much they are pressured to perform in certain ways. It is about how critical it is for girls to be part of the "right crowd", and have the right boyfriend. This story is about how Josie was quietly bullied by her boyfriend, and coerced into supporting his wants and needs, including sex until she got to the point that she was as much a victim of bullying and exclusion as the shooter.
The ending did not come as a complete surprise, nor was it completely unexpected. It did start a dialogue with my daughter and daughter-in-law who are the mothers of 5 girls! And a recommendation to read my book!
Realistic but not completely predictable.
I enjoyed this even more than My Sisters Keeper, probably because there was a lot of hype building up my sisters keeper.
Nineteen minutes reminds you how awful high school can be, no matter what your social status is.
Once again, Jodi Picoult takes a current social issue and plunges you right into it, in an intensely personal way. You feel like you know her characters and care about them, even the ones you believe you wouldn't. Tackling school shootings in a thoughtful way, Ms. Picoult looks at many of the sides involved through the eyes of people living with the consequences. Parents, you may feel uncomfortable once in awhile if you feel certain that you know your child.
Good read, but I do have to say many parts were difficult to read. This was my first Picoult book and I was instantly hooked. As a former teacher, it really makes you think about how young bullying starts in our children. Many Picoult books I will read again and again, this one I probably will not be able to. Not because it wasn't wonderfully written, but because it was so true and scary to the way the world is today. I do recommend this book though...especially to parents and anyone who works with children.
Jodi Picoult does it again. Touching on subjects that are difficult from any side, Jodi Picoult takes on school shootings - from all perspectives. And does a great job, too. I read some reviews that were angry at her for "taking a shooter's side" but I didn't get the impression at all that this was her take on the issue - I did understand that she was trying to answer the one question everyone asks when such a tragedy occurs: WHY? I loved it, it was difficult at times to read about children being killed, but at the same time it was very eye-opening to realize that this is what is happening at our children's schools and social situations, and I really recommend it to anyone who has school age children or has been bullied or even just likes a good read. A+
I really enjoyed this book.
Jodi Picoult has a way in her writing to begin confusing the reader, but then all the pieces start falling into place. She also always shocks you in the end.
Sad book, though, from all character's perspectives.
Worth reading, definitely!
This book was a little difficult to read because of the violence and timing, but really got you thinking. I ended up even reading the questions to Jodi Picoult in the back. It's really early to be writing about school shootings, so if you're not ready for that, don't read it. But if you are ready, it really helps you to get into the mindset of a shooter, which is disturbing.
This was a great read. I would encourage every parent of a teenager to read and have their child read too. Interesting enough to keep even a reluctant reader's attention. It really opens up topics of conversation. It also challenges precnceived notions about school violence.
This book has a great story line, begging you to try and see life through a bullied teen's eyes. Of course it's no excuse to do what he did, but Picoult likes to provoke us a bit. Maybe a few teens will read it and take some pity?? High school is a tough place for teens. I think as we become adults it is more acceptable to be different (or even that we are more accepting of ourselves).
I actually envisioned a different ending, considering Josie's abusive boyfriend. I DO wish Picoult would have tried to inspire teen victims of abuse to stand up for themselves and get help, though.
The first book I read by Picoult was My sisters keeper, which I loved for the story line but hated the roving 1st person point of view. Picture Perfect is the next book on my list!
What I loved most about this book is how well-developed, rich, and complex the characters are. It's what makes it so engrossing and hard to put down. I became invested in every single character, and the author forces you to let go of your expectations of what "good" and "bad" people are. Loved it.
A compelling book that you don't want to put down, this tells the story of a school shooting that examines the emotions, reactions and thinking of the shooter, the students, the mother of the shooter, the mother of a surviving student, and the detective examining the case. The kind of bullying/harassment that happens in today's schools is depicted and was quite an eye-opener for this reader. It is not a "fun" read due to the topic, but it does grab you.
I am a huge fan of Jodi Picoult and Nineteen Minutes did not disappoint me. The book jumps from past to current but it is easy to follow. I really liked the handwritten notes before each chapter that you can never really guess which 2 of the main characters is the author. This book has is a must read for all of us out there that do not understand the things that are going on in the world today with teen violence and it really shines light on bullys,popular kids, parental relationships & more. I think this would be a great read for teens & parents, but not limited too.
I am enjoying the book, not quite done, but it is compelling and well written. I think the character development is well thought out and has kept me intrigued and wanting to read the next page. Can't wait to read the ending.
One of my Favorites by Jodi, well written and superb characters. You begin to feel for the antagonist, that is the mark of a good writer. Had goosebumps as I read the final pages. The twists and turns keep you reading and I was unable to put it down.
Picoult got this one wrong. I generally like her works and the fact that she looks at issues from an unpopular point of view; however, the twist that she threw into this one at the end was neither realistic nor developed throughout the piece. This will likely be my last Picoult.
This was, by far, the best Picoult novel that I've read. Granted, I've only read three, but I thought the others were terrible, and I was ready to give up on her. But, this book renewed my hope in her novels, and I'll definitely be reading more in the future.
As a teacher, I was fascinated about the topic of school shootings. I think every reader could find some way to relate to both the bully and the bullied. I found myself empathizing with the students and even the shooter. I love the history and background she gives on each character - it makes them so much more real. I also love how Picoult jumped back and forth from the past to the present throughout the whole book. It added meaning and depth to the characters and to the story line.
This was one of the best books I've read in awhile. And I'm happy to jump back on the Picoult train:)
Of all Jodi Picoult's book this was probably the one I enjoyed the most. It was an interesting perspective on school violence. The story doesn't condone what the school gunman has done but it gives you the view from the other side of the fence. I would recommend it as a worthwhile read.
Like all of Jodi Picoult's books, this is another incredible journey that in the end makes you feel you understand what it's like to experience a tragedy from everyone's perspective. She is a gifted writer whose books should not be missed.
This was one of the best books I've read in a while. I could not put it down. It really hits on modern issues and makes you think the whole time. While it's not light reading, it had me wanting to not stop reading it. One of her best!
If you didn't give this book a five go back and re read it you missed something.
THIS BOOK IS AMAZING
I have read four of her books already and I have to say this is the best, she pulled it together at the end wonderfully. I didn't like how it turned out but I know it was fair and that doesn't make it any better but welcome to life.
This was GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!
If you want to read her books start with this one. I promise you won't be dispointed.
If you have children in school (any school) READ IT!!!!
Ms Picoult has done it again with Nineteen Minutes. Each book i have read of hers always touches my heart and i am crying somewhere during the novel. This author has a way of describing and dealing with heart aches that so many of us have endured or watched or helped take care of. Beautifully written, Nineteen Minutes deals with the subject of bullying and is worth the time to read. If you enjoy heart touching, reality reads this one you may like also.
It is amazing that the "19 minutes" all take place in the very first few pages of the book, yet Jodi Picoult still captures you for the entire story. It was a really good book that makes you look as small children on the playground differently, b/c you wonder how what happens to them now at this young age can impact them for their whole life.
A fascinating (fictional) study of a very current topic. As always Jodi Picoult tackles difficult moral issues head on. Definitely food for thought that should be required reading for all parents of teenagers, educators, and students. The character development is excellent and the writing economical.
Yet again, a wonderful read by Picoult. Parts of it were slightly predictable, but somehow that didn't manage to ruin the book for me as the characters were so well developed. She draws you into her storyline each time...
Even though it barely glosses the surface, I really like that an author tried to take the time to write a story about how, even just a little, it is for kids who get picked on when they're young. It's definitely something that needs to start at home (like put a baby monitor in your kids room until they're 18, especially if they talk to ANYONE online--seriously, trolls start young) and parents need to stop raising bullies (and realize all kids aren't angels).
My big complaint is the ending. It's getting to be a thing for Picoult when she can't figure out what to do with a character's future.
This book is the reason I fell in love with the author Jodi Picoult. She writes about such real life situations that make you sit back and think. Nineteen Minutes is a book that will make you cry and not just for the victims. You will cry for everyone involved. The book follows the after math of a school shooting, but also lets you look back on the lives of a few that are involved. You start to feel for each and every character and at the end you are in for a huge suprise. It was a great read and so close to the heart that it had me crying for awhile even after I put the book down. It is about love, loss, tragedy, and exactly how far one will go for people they truly love.
Picoult has done it again. This is one book you will not want to put down. If you have children, or were a child, you will be able to identify with the characters of this novel. It hits home on so many levels.
Having never read Jodi Picoult before, I am pleased with her style. This book was very thought-provoking for me because it was about the cruelty of children to other children. It's also about the love of parents for their children whether they are the innocent victims or the accused.
Very good read for anyone...especially those with school-age kids.
One of the best books I have read in a long time and I read a lot of books. I have read a few of Jodi Picoult's books but so far this is the best one. She really gets into the mind of the boy that does the shooting and from there she thoroughly describes the hurts and the fears and the feelings of all the other characters of the story. It was one of those books that I couldn't wait to get done with whatever I was doing so I could get back to the book and read some more. It is a rather thick book but worth every page. A really great read.
The story behind a school shooting, but with a twist--it looks sympathetically at the family of the shooter and how even a kid who performs a horrendous act has someone who has loved him. Picoult provides a good in-depth look at the potential consequences of bullying. It really makes you think about judgements and that we need to dig beyond the surface to find truth.
I though this was a really powerful book and really made a person think about growing up with peer pressure and bullies. It is interesting to understand all the different sides and options of different people so i like how Jodi portrays different perspectives with different characters in the book.
Very good book. Even though I guessed the ending I thought the author did an excellent job of writing this book. I liked how she continuously wrote the story line from different character perspectives. At times, it was hard to read because of the storyline but I expected that. I would definitely recommend this book.
I have turned in to a huge Jodi Picoult fan. Her books are always about topics with grey areas between what you typically think of as right or wrong and always make me stretch outside of my normal thinking about situations. They are the kind of books you can't put down and have you talking about the topics of the book with anyone who will listen.
The book follows Peter, his parents, Josie, her mother, and basically the whole town through the aftermath of a school shooting, the investigation, and the trial. It is so interesting to see how the different characters in the book react and cope with what has happened and there is a twist in the end that you might not see coming.
Again it was another great book from Jodi Picoult and one of my all time favorites.
To come to the plot itself I found a lot of characters far fetched and just too unbelievable to really have happened.
The ending is absolutely unrealistic and unbelievable. It seems forced and stands out of the rest of the book. Although the book is fictional it relates on facts and research of actually happened School shootings in the past. Why the writer felt the ending must not match the rest of the book is an unsolved mystery to me.
Overall, I didn't like it but I didn't dislike it either. For me it was just a collection of other facts about school shootings, circumstances and trial journals.
The book might be something for students to read in school and maybe learn about their everyday actions in school.
This one is okay. It's the third one that I read of Picoult. I really liked the first one that I read and really hated the second one that I read, and this one just kinda sat in the middle. I doubt I'd read it again.
Jodi Picoult has the power to humanize the most morally devoid East Coaster to the average Midwestern. This book is no exception. However, after the final court room twist, we do not see what was going on in Josie's head. We see Peter's, his mother's, and her mother's point of view. Yet, Josie was the one who altered the entire story; therefore I found the ending lacking.