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Nineteen Minutes

Average Rating 4.5
( 1277 )
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(115)

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(39)

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(31)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

20 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

WELL WRITTEN, SERIOUS SUBJECT MATTER!

This is a, WELL WRITTEN, story about cruelty and evil. Since it's about a school shooting, you'd assume the bad guy is the one with the guns. Think again.
What the shooter does is unforgivable, killing 10 kids and hurting many more. But he acts more as a reaction to...
This is a, WELL WRITTEN, story about cruelty and evil. Since it's about a school shooting, you'd assume the bad guy is the one with the guns. Think again.
What the shooter does is unforgivable, killing 10 kids and hurting many more. But he acts more as a reaction to cruelty and evil than because he is naturally that way himself.
Everyone has, at one time or another, felt like an outsider, like they don't belong. Peter Houghton is an oddball from the beginning, and school is a place where such kids are often tormented. In a series of searing vignettes, Peter is essentially tortured by other students. It reminded me of baby birds in the wild, who will sometimes peck weaker siblings to death.
The final pages have the requisite Jodi Picoult surprise ending, which left me wanting to read high-schooler Josie's narrative. It's not there, so the reader is left to wonder what she is thinking.
At first I was hesitant to read this book, because of the grim subject matter. Once I started, it was hard to put down. I wish the author had written more about the high school kids and less about the adults, but it's still a compelling read. I won't let my 9th-grader read it, because it has sex scenes way too raw, but it would be good for 12th-graders and older.

posted by 148617 on October 20, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Would recommend

This is the 2nd book I have read by Jodi Picoult. WOW...she definitely brings into play major issues and REALLY makes her writers think. She is truly talented at this. I could not put this book down. Unfortunately I did not like the end. This was the same issue I h...
This is the 2nd book I have read by Jodi Picoult. WOW...she definitely brings into play major issues and REALLY makes her writers think. She is truly talented at this. I could not put this book down. Unfortunately I did not like the end. This was the same issue I had with the 1st book of hers I read (The Pact). Still.....the book was VERY well written and I will give her another chance!

posted by 5783872 on May 10, 2011

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  • Posted November 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Heart-Wrenching

    i couldn't put it down, i had to know everyting, the story drags you in, i didn't exactly like Jodi Picoult's writing, but like i said it sucks you in, i had to finish it, and the plot was interesting enough that i think i will read some of her others just to see what else she will come up with, but i'll have to wait a bit, i don't think i can take the emotional overload again so soon, i was unsatisfied with some of the character endings

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2008

    Great book - although surprised by the ending.

    This was my first read by Jodi Picoult, and I've definetly become a fan! Excellent book - had my attention from the beginning and couldn't put it down. The only negative I could give the book was the end, which was why I rated 4 stars and not 5. I sat there thinking, "Really? This is how it ends." I guess what it was was that the twist didn't make sense to me. Not what happens with Peter, but the seret that is kept until the end. I didn't find it believeable, and it took away from the ending for me. Didn't ruin the book - just a little disappointed.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2014

    Nineteen Minutes was one of the best books I¿ve read in my lifet

    Nineteen Minutes was one of the best books I’ve read in my lifetime.Having never read a novel by Jodi Picoult, but having many friends tell me how good her writing is, I looked forward to reading one of her many works. Picoult wrote an amazing book that not only entertains you but leaves you thinking about life and about the lives around you. I give this book two thumbs up. This book was one of the first books I read and thoroughly enjoyed.  Nineteen Minutes is a story of a high school shooting, in the small town of Sterling, Hew Hampshire. Picoult showed true High School life. She presented the reality between the different cliques in high school today. Kids in school get bullied so much and this shows how bad it can get. It presents how much bullying can push somebody to do something that they'll regret. The book really speaks from both sides of the story. By unfolding the story of the trial and how this tragic event came to be, Picoult precisely exhibits the broken down criminal and how deep down Peter really isn't a criminal. It displays how friends can change on you. This story has great morals and just speaks to the heart.




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  • Posted February 17, 2014

    Highly Recommend

    This was a very good book and I enjoyed reading it. We read this as part of our book club and the general consensus was that it was a good read! At the end (don't worry I don't post spoilers) I wished there were more. It's not that I felt the ending wasn't good but I just wanted to know more what happened to certain characters and I felt as though the story wasn't quite over. I don't want to say too much because as I said I don't post spoilers.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2013

    Good read

    I
    The story kept me going

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2013

    Must Read!

    If you're a reader who loves plot twists mixed with suspense, you'll love this novel. Jodi Picoult does an excellent job at portraying the unthinkable and dives into the emotions of each character. Definitely a discussion starter!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    i like that mrs. Picoult choose to write about issues that hits

    i like that mrs. Picoult choose to write about issues that hits our reality. What is going on in families that we don´t know our teenagers?
    Is it really the parents habits of communications that is failing? Those were the questions that she puts in frame and try to deal with in this story. 
    I don't understand how bullying can be the trigger of a teenager to ruin his life and the life of many others... It is happening nowadays, and we as parents
    are afraid that might happen to our children. 
    Not easy topic and the writer touch it with every line of sensitivity. 

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  • Posted April 6, 2013

    Highly recommend. I love her books

    I love her books!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2013

    Highly Recommended

    Great read.............

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  • Posted September 5, 2012

    I have heard so many good things about Jodi Picoult. So, I

    I have heard so many good things about Jodi Picoult. So, I felt like I had to try some of her books, and this one was in a collection that my friend gifted me, once on Amazon. And all I can say is that: Count me as a HUGE fan of Jodi Picoult.
    Alex is a great judge, but her job has build a huge wall between her and her daughter, Josie. Lacy lost one of her sons a few years ago, she will not let herself lose her other son, Peter, too. Josie became one of the popular kids, once she started dating Matt, but that's not who she wants to be. Peter has been bullied by the popular kids all his life, he has been thrown into lockers, humiliated, etc... He doesn't think that he can take anymore.
    On March 7, Peter changes the lives of Alex, Lacy, Josie, Matt, and everyone living in Sterling, forever. He loads two pistols and two shotguns, and drives to his high school. In a state of determination, Peter kills 10 of his classmates and teachers and injures 19.
    When Peter is caught, the trial starts. Patrick is the detective on the case, he has never thought that he will witness something like this happen in Sterling, and he never knew that he might fall in love with the judge, Alex. Jordan is Peter's lawyer, he has nothing that might save Peter from jail, but he still wants to know WHY Peter had done this. Alex is the judge on Peter's case, but her daughter is one of the injured, and she is slowly falling in love with the detective, Patrick. Lacy is heartbroken over the lose of yet another son. Matt is dead, but Josie is alive, and she doesn't even remember what happened that day.
    Will Alex be a fair or will her fair for her daughter cloud her judgement? Will Patrick be able to find out the truth about that day? Will Jordan be able to save Peter from a life-long sentence? Will Lacy lose both of her sons? Will Josie ever remember what happened that day? And why has Peter done this? Find out the answer to all those questions when you read this heart-wrenching, realistic to-the-core story, Nineteen Minutes...
    I truly loved this story. I am such a HUGE fan of realistic novels, novels that tell the story of out everyday lives. This was one of them. Jodi Picoult portraits bullying and high school truthfully but perfectly. I liked her writing style a lot. The plot is very unpredictable (in a good way), and you really get to know the characters. I wanted to know why Peter killed 10 people, I wanted to know what would happen to Josie, Alex, and Patrick. I craved their happy ending!
    Now, let's talk about the bad side. The book was told in 3rd person. The narrator talked about each of the characters back and forth (he did that. She did that...), but the focus was on almost 10 characters, which is too much. There weren't any indications of when the focus on main characters changed, one minute I was inside Josie's head, another minute I was inside Peter's, I got really confused sometimes, and I didn't even know whose thoughts I was reading. Another bad thing, (although, it is not exactly a bad thing) was that the book was really depressing, TOO depressing for my taste. The end was pretty satisfying but not happy. I didn't cry my eyes out, but I was depressed and sad throughout the whole book.
    Aside from the confusion, this book was very enjoyable and different from the books I have been reading this year. I will recommend this book to Thriller/Suspense fans and Realistic Fiction fans. You better try something from Jodi Picoult or you're missing out!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2012

    4.5 stars

    Wow...fantastic story, definitely a hot topic today. The story kept you at the edge of your seatbwondering how everything would unfold. Picoult does not disappoint.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2012

    Awesome

    I really enjoyed Nineteen Minutes. It was a little slow but it is a great book....

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  • Posted August 12, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    19 Minutes is a Topical read

    I thought this book was good. However, there were a few parts of it that bothered me. Yes, it is a good book for discussing bullying and school shootings. Jodi Picoult gives readera insight into how Peter's being bullied culminated into his shooting many students. she also did a good job showing how a community is affected by one person's actions. I was annoyed that Josie shot Matt because I felt that it was overdramatic and contrived. Also, the ending was a bit too after school special for me. Finally, as a person who has been picked on her entire life, Nineteen Minutes hit too close to home for me. I read this book for book club. I would recommend it for book clubs.

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  • Posted August 1, 2012

    I love Jodi Picoult. This was not my favorite of her books, but

    I love Jodi Picoult. This was not my favorite of her books, but it was still good. She addresses the hard issues--like bullying, school shootings, suicide--in a way that makes you relate to all the characters from every point of view. There isn't an outright villain here because you find yourself sympathizing with the perpetrator of horrendous crimes.

    Part of the ending was disappointing to me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2012

    Very Good book

    I enjoyed this book. My feelings were all over the place on this book. First you feel bad for the bully, then the students that became his victims, and then the parents on both sides. Good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2012

    Wow"

    This book was very different than any other book I have read! Jodi does an awesime job by showing many different point of views.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    Interesting

    I love all the different viewpoints the author gives you. It made it more real to my heart.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2012

    Interesting perspective

    This book was a little slow in the beginning but once i got about a quarter of the way through it really came alive! Could not put it down. Really forces you to think about the everlasting impressions we have on each other .

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  • Posted April 22, 2012

    Grabs your interest and holds it.

    Well worth reading. It ties several current concerns together and makes for a thought provoking read.

    Be aware that near the end of the book there is a short instance of somewhat graphic sex and some rough lanuage. It is necessary to the plot, but we almost used this for a group read with students. I would like to have used it, but in our setting it would have been hard to defend for the age. It would be an excellent discussion starter tho!

    I highly recommend this book.

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  • Posted April 14, 2012

    Excellent

    Excellent read. Though a sad subject. I couldn't put it down.

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