Book: The Pact
Author: Jodi Picoult
Pages read: 326-347
At the beginning of Friday’s class, I was about two thirds into my book, The Pact, getting more and more anxious to finish it with each flipped page. I had a lot more questions and comments, about the characters especially. Each of them is dealing with the same situation, essentially. Yet every one of them has their own internal conflicts that have derived from it. What intrigues me about that is just how many different ways there are to handle the same situation as well as how people can be so differently affected by it. For example, Chris, his parents and Emily’s parents all had to cope with her death. Her mother had so much anger inside which she insisted on passing onto others; she didn’t know how to handle her grief. Chris’s father, on the other hand, refused to show emotion, hardly acknowledging the tragedy at all. For him, that was easier. Gus and Michael – their other two parents – were torn. They wanted to discuss the things that were left unsaid or the things they might not have seen. They turned to each other for comfort. At that point, I’m not sure what I would rather – being alone, or confiding in someone I potentially shouldn’t be. I think I would need someone by my side, for a little extra support. A little later, James, Chris’s father finally comes to a realization and shows support towards his son. I suppose we all have different ways of coping.
I’ve always liked the saying “if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” Which is why I found it so interesting earlier, when Jordan explained his idea of “the truth” and how there is no one truth. He recently switched to being a defense lawyer, rather than a prosecutor, because as a prosecutor, he claimed “you’ve got the burden of proof.” As a defense lawyer, all you need to do is introduce the slightest bit of doubt. Meaning you don’t really need to know the truth, or believe in it. How could anyone dedicate their life and their career to doing something you don’t actually believe in? Trying to convince others of something you’re not totally sold on. I know I couldn’t. His reasoning for the change really got me thinking. Mostly about why we do the things we do.
This was actually the first book I’d read by Jodi Picoult. Followed by Keeping Faith, which I wasn’t quite as into. Then nearly halfway through Nineteen Minutes, I became distracted with other things, leaving the book unfinished. Being my second time reading The Pact, I noticed more details and connections between characters and plot that I missed the first time around. For example, I somehow never realized why Emily wanted to spend her last night at the carousel – even though it specifies quite clearly in the story, why that location was meaningful to her. I managed to complete the book over the weekend, which always leaves me with kind of a bittersweet feeling. I’m sad that it’s over, because I enjoyed the story so much. Yet, for the same reason, I was so anxious to finish it. I’ve heard a ton of great things about The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill. So that one is next on my list!