As part of my "15 things to do before I'm 30" list, I pledged to read 10 books in the next year and I'm falling behind. I've been too focused on knitting my legwarmers! So now I'm trying to balance reading, knitting and fall TV.
Anyhow, Monday I had the day off so I launched into book number one: "Nineteen Minutes" by Jodi Picoult. I've read a lot of her books in the past and they always make me think and sympathize with characters I normally wouldn't.
And I have to admit, I cheated when I read her book, "My Sister's Keeper." When I say that I cheated, I meant that I got about halfway through the book and then, feeling a bad gut reaction, I skipped ahead to the last three chapters to see if I was right. I know, it's wrong, but I had to know. I won't ruin it for anyone, but when my suspicions were confirmed, I threw the book halfway across the room and let it sit there for three days before I returned it.
On my big day off, I only planned to read for about an hour but three to four hours later, I was still on my couch reading this book and now I am 70 percent of the way through it. And I have to admit, I don't know if I can finish it.
For those who don't know, the book takes place around a Columbine-like massacre at a high school and the ensuing trial of the kid caught when the gun. But like Picoult's other books, it looks at the story from multiple points-of-view, such as the popular and unpopular crowd. While the book is well written and balanced, I personally found it very hard to get through and am still disturbed by what I have read. Why? Well it is a heavy subject matter, but it is also a bit more personal than I thought it would be.
When I was in middle school, a former student walked into the neighboring high school one day, found the vice principal and shot him multiple times in the hallway. Fortunately, no one else was hurt, but the high school and my middle school went into immediate lock down, especially after there was a rumor that the shooter was going to the middle school next. Cops and parents crowded the streets and my dad came to get my brother and me and he had to show ID to pick us up and walk us to the car. They eventually found the shooter and he's in jail now, but the entire community was a raw nerve for a long time. My dad was a high school principal for over 30 years and wasn't always well-liked, so after this happened, I spent a lot of time worrying about him, fearing something like this would happen to him too, and fortunately it didn't.
I know this is a little heavy and I might be reading into the book a bit too much, but it hit a big nerve for me, outside of the shooting, such as the relationship between two teenage characters. I had a harder time reading this than I thought I would.
So I hope I haven't brought the mood down too much, but after seeing people's response tweets to me on Monday, I felt I had to share this. I'll still finish the book because I'm really almost done with it, but I think I'll take my time.
For book number two, I want to find something fluffier to read. I'm open to suggestions. Help a girl out.
Reader note: I was loving everyone's comments about yesterday's post on dining out alone. Really, I'm glad I'm not alone in this feeling. But now if I call you up on a Saturday night asking if you want to get food, this is why :) Thank you everyone for your great comments, I loved reading them!