(ARC provided by publisher)
This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
This is a young adult realistic fiction (Rated PG-13)
(Three Weeping Hearts)
The principal of Opportunity, Alabama's high school finishes her speech, welcoming the entire student body to a new semester and encouraging them to excel and achieve.
The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class.
The auditorium doors won't open.
Someone starts shooting.
Told over the span of 54 harrowing minutes from four different perspectives, terror reigns as one student's calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival.
In recent years, more and more senseless acts of violence have invaded our school. I was particularly interested to see how things would turn out.
I think for me the biggest disappointment from this story was that I didn’t even begin to connect with the characters until about 40% in. I think most of that had to do with how the story was told. While the multiple POVs should have given me more insight, instead it hampered the story because we would get snippets of each POV in a chapter ending on tiny cliffies. It should have made me want to turn the page to find more, instead, I didn’t connect with characters enough to care what happened.
One of the other big issues for me is Claire’s brother Matt. This isn’t a spoiler. He has lupus or so we are told by Claire. Yet he acts like he’s mildly retarded and has some other disabling disease that I know for a fact isn’t a result of lupus. As I’ve had friends and family with the disease and none of them are retarded or disabled in any way. So I thought it was rather odd for the author to portray the lupus in such an incorrect light. Lupus is when you’re immunity system attacks your organs. And this isn’t something you are born with per se. It’s something that manifests itself later in life. Thus it’s not the cause of retardation or being unable to walk. And it’s managed with drugs and you can live a rather long life with minor disruptions. Most people who walk by a person with lupus would never know they have it. So for the author to mention it without explaining what else was wrong with Matt (unless I missed it) seems unfair to those dealing with those diseases.
Other than that, while I liked the diversity of the characters such as race, sexual orientation, jock or not, I thought that the important stories around the main characters that should have been reminders and morals of stories were lost in the multiple jumping around POV.s I think one POV per chapter or even telling the story in third person would have served this story better.
I also think that the blog post and tweets were unnecessary and added no value to the story.
Still with all that said, there was something there. I did tear up, not so much of the characters as the situation lended itself to so many emotions. Just sad situation. I just wished the story and the characters would have been fleshed out better.
Don’t take my word on it. If the blurb captures you, you should give it a try. You might love it.
My book boyfriend Tomas.
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