Nineteen Minutes

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Nineteen Minutes
by Jodi Picoult

These are the words that seventeen-year-old Peter Houghton says when he is found after a school shooting spree huddling with a gun in his hand by Detective Patrick Ducharme. An outcast who had been bullied since kindergarten, Peter kills ten, including a teacher, and injures many more.

[spoiler title="Click for More"]At first glance, it looks like a straightforward act of revenge, but things are revealed to be more complex. One of his victims is Matt Royston, the boyfriend of his former childhood friend, Josie Cormier, and others are members of the in-crowd, but others have seemingly no relation. In the days before the trial, and in the days leading up to the shooting, we are given the backstory, told mostly from Josie’s, Peter’s, and their mothers’ viewpoint. We learn of the incessant teasing this boy received, adults’ unsuccessful attempts to help him fit in, and of the stormy relationship between Josie and Matt.

During the trial, we hear from the victims who survived and the devastation the crime has wrought on their lives. In the end, the reader may still be undecided whether Peter is primarily a victim, perpetrator, loyal friend, or all three, but that is the point. [/spoiler]

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Lexile
Level
Content
Rating
Number of
Pages
Genre
Date
Published
ISBN
Number
890L Young Adult 460 Thriller/Suspense 2007 0743496736

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