The Pact

The Pact

A Love Story

Book - 1998
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Baker & Taylor
The budding romance between two teenaged children of two families who have been lifelong friends and neighbors culminates tragically in an abortive suicide pact, leading to a gripping courtroom drama

Friendship, loyalty, lifelong love -- and teenage suicide. A riveting, timely, and terrifying novel from an acclaimed writer who skillfully intertwines the intimate perceptions of Anne Tyler with the dramatic tension of John Grisham

The Golds and the Hartes, neighbors for eighteen years, have always been inseparable. So have their children-and it's no surprise that in high school Chris and Emily's friendship blossoms into something more. But the bonds of family, friendship, and passion-which had seemed so indestructible -- suddenly threaten to unravel in the wake of unexpected tragedy.

When midnight calls from the hospital come in, no one is ready for the truth. Emily is dead at seventeen from a gunshot wound to the head. There's a single unspent bullet in the gun that Chris pilfered from his father's cabinet-a bullet that Chris tells police he intended for himself. But a local detective has doubts about the suicide pact that Chris describes.

This extraordinary, heart-rending novel asks questions that every parent faces: How much do we know about our children? Our friends?
What if . . .? As its chapters unfold, alternating between an idyllic past and an unthinkable present, The Pact paints an indelible portrait of families in anguish . . . and creates an astonishingly suspenseful courtroom drama, as Chris finds himself on trial for murder.

It's rare to find a writer who combines Alice Hoffman's gift for evoking everyday life in pellucid prose with a remarkable ability to create a legal page-turner that will keep you up all night reading, but this is such a book. The Pact rings true: wonderfully observed, truly moving, frightening, and utterly impossible to put down.

& Taylor

The budding romance between two teenaged children of two families who have been lifelong friends and neighbors culminates tragically in an abortive suicide pact, leading to a gripping courtroom drama. Reprint.

Publisher: New York : W. Morrow & Co., c1998
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780688170523
Characteristics: 389 p. ; 25 cm


From the critics

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Jul 18, 2019

This is one powerful story. Emily and Chris know each other from birth and go from childhood friends to lovers. Everyone, including their parents, wanted to see them together. Jodi Picoult outlines the difficulties Emily encounters when realizing that her love for Chris may not be romantic but rather a strong love one might have for a best friend ans sibling. Riviting.

Jan 28, 2017

Not one of my favorite Jody Picoult novels, just an interesting read. It's really more about how the court case goes than about what the characters are feeling. She does include some views on the role of truth in the courtroom and on intensely close relationships between teens.

loonylovesgood Nov 30, 2015

One of the more depressing Jodi Picoult stories. The ending of this one was somewhat really unsatisfying for me. Still so many loose ends. I didn't like a lot of the characters in this one, either, and had trouble understanding motivation for a lot of them. Still, it was a page-turner, near the end!

Jun 25, 2015

This book is a total waste of your time. This is not even CLOSE to a decent love story. Save yourself the disappointment and don't read this book. The ending is unsatisfactory and leaves you wondering why you wasted all that time reading the first 350 pages. Read a different book by the same author. It will (most likely) be much better than this rubbish.

Oct 04, 2014

Jodi Picoult's "The Pact" is billed as a love story but it is far more than that. It is a story of complex human relationships culminating in a John Grisham like Courtroom Drama. The story involves the death of Emily Gold. Is it a suicide or did Chris Harte kill her? That in essence is the plot but in answering this question Picoult has explored so many areas of relationships that the book tugged at my heartstrings. As for the trial each time a witness was examined and cross-examined I swayed between thinking Chris would be acquitted or convicted. No, I will not be a spoiler. This book is a must read.

lbarkema Sep 24, 2014

This was my first introduction to Jodi Picoult years ago, and I just remember it consuming me. Jodi writes well and makes you feel for every single character whether you really like them or not. Told as a multiple-person narrative, ethical questions are brought up about the main plot that make you view every perspective and to take a look at your own views or stance. This book made my heart hurt, it was so emotional, but that is the biggest reason you must read it. To make one feel those feelings marks a great novel, in my opinion.

Jan 28, 2014

This was a really good book like all of the rest of hers! There was a fantastic twist at the end of this one just like all the rest! So much so that I stayed on the elliptical for an extra 10 minutes just to finish the book.

Apr 22, 2013

A pretty good book - typical Jodi Picoult fare. I find her writing extremely easy to read with in depth characters who are easy to identify with.

Cupcake1515 Apr 13, 2013

I read this book about a year ago. It was so good! I love Jodi Picoult. She is one of my favorite authors. Nineteen Minutes is also a fantastic book.

BookFaerie27 Apr 06, 2013

Completely riveting! Picoult never disappoints!

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Jan 11, 2011

gabby_routhier thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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