Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Nineteen minutes, by Jodi Picoult

"In nineteen minutes, you can mow the front lawn, colour your hair, watch a third of a hockey game...In nineteen minutes, you can stop the world, or you can just jump off it. In nineteen minutes, you can get revenge."
Jodi Picoult, one of my favourite authors, specialises in characters outside the norm. In Nineteen Minutes, she gets inside the head of a young boy, bullied since kindergarten, who turns on his tormentors with horrifying results. That all too common phenomenon, the school shooting, leaves shattered lives and so many questions. Whose fault is it - Peter the shooter's? His parents? The bullies? There are no easy answers, and Picoult does not offer excuses, but lets the characters tell their own stories.
This is a shocking tale, well-written and so absorbing I read it almost in one hit. I had read it before but forgotten the details, so came to it almost afresh and admiring of Picoult's ability to deal with difficult issues and keep the surprises going to the last pages.
Rating - I give this 5/5
Get this from the library
Reviewed by Jan @ Ballarat branch

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