Nineteen minutes by jodi picoult

Nineteen Minutes is a non-fiction story that plays out the reality of high school and the everyday struggles that families have to overcome.

The story takes places in Sterling, New Hampshire. Peter, a junior at Sterling High School is a victim of bullying. After being bullied for so many years, Peter finally breaks. When Peter shoots up Sterling High School, it’s up to Jordan, Peter’s attorney to figure out what caused Peter to commit such a horrific crime. Judge Alex Cormier gets handed this case, but when the community hears that her daughter Josie, is a student at Sterling High School, she is questioned if she can do her job through the eyes of a judge, and not the eyes of a parent.

After reviewing the case the police officer, Patrick, finds a missing detail that will forever change the lives of everyone involved in such a tragic incident. Nineteen Minutes is a well written novel that puts the way children and adults are affected by bullying in perspective that will leave people with a whole new outlook on the way they treat others in their everyday lives. I think this novel is a well-written story because of the thrilling events that are constantly happening, the way it changes your perspective on everyday life, and because of the connections you make with characters in the novel. Nineteen Minutes is a story filled with thrilling events that are unexpected and shocking. In the beginning of the story the chilling event of the school shooting is revealed, leaving with the question why? After Peter is taken into custody his attorney Jordan comes to talk to him. Then Peter asks a chilling question, “ How many did I get?” (Pg.

233) which suddenly makes the reader wonder what’s really behind the thoughts of Peter Houghton. The shocking events keep coming and at the end of the novel the alarming truth is revealed and so is an unsuspecting twist no one would have imagined happening. The Novel also changes the perspective the reader has about everyday events and how bullying is a realistic issue. Peter has been bullied from when he was in kindergarten getting his Spiderman lunchbox thrown out the window to being a junior in high school and having the boys in his class pull down his pants in front of the whole lunchroom. Peter’s attorney takes these facts into consideration when trying to figure out what caused Peter to commit such a horrid act.

Jordan goes to his friend, King Wah, a physiatrist, to help find answers to why Peter might have committed this crime. They have a very important conversation.” So Peter becomes the first example of bullied victim syndrome,” Jordan said. “ Be honest with me, King. You think a jury is going to identify with a syndrome that doesn’t even really exist?” “ A jury’s not made up of battered women, but they’ve been known to acquit them before. On the other hand, every single member of that jury will have been through high school.

” He reached for Jordan’s Coke and took a sip. “ Did you know that a single incident of bullying in childhood can be as traumatic to a person, over time, as a single incident of sexual abuse?” (Pg. 809) After hearing this conversation the readers see how bullying is a real issue that is faced everyday in high school and the outcome it can possibly lead to. Nineteen Minutes is a successful novel because of the connections it makes the reader have with the characters. In the story, there are times that you can connect with many different characters all at one time.

There is a moment in the story when Lacy and Lewis Houghton are standing in front of the memorial representing the students that were killed in the shooting and the couple have a special conversation. “ We did the best we could,” Lacy said. “ It wasn’t good enough.” Lewis jerked his head in the direction of the graves. “ Look at this. Look at this” (Pg.

805). When reading this, the reader can connect to this conversation, especially readers that are parents. The readers know how it feels to think you did everything right, to have everything turn into something so unexpected. Having the reader’s connect with the characters help make this book a success. Jodi Picoult, author of Nineteen Minutes, is able to accomplish a well-written novel by including thrilling events that always leave the reader wanting more, by including issues that readers face everyday such as bullying, and by allowing the reader to connect with the characters on a personal level.

Nineteen Minutes puts the issues of everyday life in a story that will leave you wanting more after every chapter.