The Golds and the Hartes have been like family for nearly eitheen years. Melanie and Michael Gold movied in next door to Gus (short for Augusta) and James Harte when each of the women were pregnant. Gus and Melanie nearly instantly became best friends, taking James and Michael along for the ride. Not long after, Chris Harte was born, and just six months after that came Emily Gold.
Within hours of her birth, she and Chris were sleeping in the same bassenet, holding hands.
Now, eitheen years later Emily is dead, Chris is in jail for killing her, and their parents don't agree on whether he's guilt or not. Melanie just knows Chris did it, Michael doesn't believe he could have, James appears to think his son killed Emily, and as much as Gus doesn't want to believe that Chris was suicidal--that would mean believing his story of a suicide pact--she knows he's not guilty. Who is right? Is Chris lying when he says they were both suicidal? Did he really kill the love of his life? Or did something else happen?
As is with all Jodi Picoult books, The Pact was sad, beautiful, and completely wonderful. There wasn't a moment where I wasn't trying to figure it all out--wanting to trust Chris the whole time. And also as is with Jodi Picoult books, it involved flashbacks and the judicial system.
Each and every flashback was perfect, revealing just a little piece of the characters until they were whole human being with feeling and reactions and pain. In Part I: The Boy Next Door, you got to know Chris Harte and what he went through as a child. You learn how he went from being inseperable friends with Emily to being something more than that. In Part II: The Girl Next Door, you learn all about Emily's pain. You get to see a part of her that is contradictory and sad, but still undeniably gorgeous. In the very last part The Truth, you find out what really happened that night, and it's a great story.
After finishing this book, I don't think I could have shed another tear. I was indifferent as I read the last word because I don't think I had enough sadness in me after letting it all out. This is a heartbreaking, melancholy book that I suggest you read--there are happy parts to it, and funny parts, and parts that will make you smile just thinking about how sweet Emily and Chris' relationship is. There will be no book to make you think like a Jodi Picoult novel can.
I give this 5/5 cups of cheerful steaming coffee on a dismal, dreary, gray day.
p.s. I'm starting to think that their last names were Harte and Gold because each and every character had a heart of gold (except, maybe Melanie, but that's just becuase she was kind of a jerk to Gus)