Monday, August 30, 2010

Nineteen Reasons I LOVED Nineteen Minutes

Last night, I finally finished reading Nineteen Minutes by Jodi PicoultI LOVED IT!  I have never actually blogged about a book before, because: (A) Who the heck am I?  (B) I have respect for all writers and the creative process, and (C) Who the heck am I?

HOWEVER, since I have nothing but gushing, positive things to say about this book, why the heck not?  Please note I am not trying to be profound or "scholarly;" I just want to share my initial reactions.  I'm also working very hard not to spoil anything, so my comments are brief.

So, here goes.....

Nineteen Reasons I LOVED Nineteen Minutes (in no particular order...)

1.  The topic addressed in this book is so important in modern society.  Personally, I feel all educators, administrators, and yes, high school students, should be required to read and dissect this work.

2.  The book is from the perspective of many characters.  Each character has a story.  They are developed so fully, I feel I know each of them personally.

3.  From the moment I began reading, I was immediately hooked.  There was no, "let me give it a few pages" with this novel.  I couldn't put it down.  And I couldn't stop talking about it.  I was telling everyone and anyone to read it.  That means I definitely like it!

4.  I learned a lot from this book.  I learned about the legal system, I learned about parenting, and I relearned about being a teenager in high school.  I learned actions have consequences and that everything affects everything.  And most importantly, I learned (or at least considered) that tragedies such as this do have their roots, and it is the roots that must be addressed.

5.  I was told everything I needed to know to understand the story.  There were no gaps or missing links.  The author provided gave the reader the background information necessary to understand how all the pieces of the puzzle fit together.

6.  While reading this book, I became a resident of Sterling, NH.  I was experiencing the events right along with the characters.  I was truly there.

7.  It was realistic and believable.  At times, I yelled at characters as if they were real people.  For a fictional story, it was pretty real to me.

8.  When I thought I had it all figured out, I was thrown for a loop.

9.  I read slowly because I wanted to enjoy the story.  I didn't want it to end.  When it did, I wanted to know more.  I wasn't finished with these characters.

10.  I experienced the entire spectrum of emotions when reading the novel.

11.  There is always another side to the story, even if you don't want to hear it.

12.  The author remained totally unbiased in her depiction of the events.  Never once did I see her own personal opinions leak through.

13.  My heart bled for Lacey.  I wanted to have a conversation with her.  I wished I had the ability to jump into the pages and give her a hug.  That's all I'm going to say.

14.  I found the character of Alex to be so intriguing.  She was truly a unique individual, in my opinion, and I really enjoyed her role in the story.

15.  It made me THINK!  Think, interpret, reflect, analyze, and evaluate.  Hello, Blooms!  We meet again.

16.  In all honesty, the ending left me unsettled, but completely in a good way.  Did I get what I wanted?  Do I wish it ended differently?  I HAVE NO IDEA!  It's kind of a cool feeling.

17.  I learned their is so much truth in "Never judge a book by its cover." 

18.  I enjoyed the writing.  The sensory details, the subtle humor in a dark plot, and the references.  I usually don't pick up on a lot of these things, but this time, I did.

19.  My reaction to the book surprised me.  It wasn't how I expected to feel, and those who know me well (and are familiar with the book) may be shocked at this statement themselves.  Since you are all going to go read it, I'm not going to elaborate or explain my final statement.  So without saying anything more, I'll simply say this:

I did not hate Peter.  The End.

I know a lot of you have read this book.  I encourage those of you who have to comment on this blog.  I'm not kidding - I loved this book.  I'm not ready to stop discussing it just yet; I'd love to hear from you and converse.

Additionally: This week I will be posting details and prize information for my first blog giveaway.  Please check back to find out how you can participate and register to win a cool prize!


  1. I enjoyed reading your list (and of course the book too) and I definitely felt and thought a lot of the same things (even the part about Peter). I too learned a lot reading the book, even though I am a children's clinician and have worked with kids who have had similar experiences (fortunately, no one i have worked with has used as violent a means to cope with/express their feelings). I think that Jodi Picoult is an amazing writer, which is why I am working my way through all of her books! Great review Paul! Looking forward to some day reading your book! -Heather H.

  2. I am a bit sad that there is not a list of comments under this blog. You commented on many of the same points we discussed over the phone- but I would have loved to hear other people's opinions.

    I feel like this book is very important- and should be be read by adults and young adults. May I even dare to suggest that it should be placed on schools must read lists.

    If anything this book will bring to surface many topics worth talking about.


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