One Event, Many Lives Changed|Book Review

Book: Violent Ends

Genre: Fiction

Authors: Shaun David Hutchinson, Neal Shusterman and Brendan Shusterman, Beth Revis, Cynthia Leitich Smith, Courtney Summers, Kendare Blake, Delolah S. Dawson, Steve Brezenoff, Tom Leveen, Hannah Moskowitz, Blythe Woolston, Trish Doller, Mindi Scott, Margie Gelbwasser, Christine Johnson, E.M. Kokie, and Elisa Nader

Synopsis: It took only twenty-two minutes for Kirby Matheson to exit his car, march onto school grounds, enter the gymnasium, and open fire, killing six and injuring five others.

But this isn’t a story about the shooting itself. This isn’t about recounting that one unforgettable day.

This is about Kirby and how one boy—who had friends, enjoyed reading, played saxophone in the band, and had never been in trouble before—became a monster capable of entering his school with a loaded gun and firing on his classmates.

My Review: I bought this book on a whim. I was in my local bookstore browsing the must read section and this book caught my eye.

Told in seventeen different perspectives by 17 different YA fiction writers, are the stories of Kirby’s classmates, neighbors, bullies, and best friends. Each character tells of how Kirby impacted their lives and how they impacted his, before and after the tragic event.

This book was well written. I enjoyed the short little stories that intersected into the overall event. This book isn’t about what Kirby did on that fateful day, but it is about what he did to others, good and bad, and what others did to him.

Readers aren’t made to feel sorry for Kirby or see Kirby as the bad guy, they can see Kirby and the other characters for what they are: teens. Kids just trying to navigate through life. Kirby could have been any one of those characters and they could have been him.

Was there an event that made Kirby do what he did? A specific moment where he decided to kill people? Not exactly. Maybe it was a series of events. Maybe, Kirby did not have the will to live on. It isn’t alluded to in the book and that is OK. Often times in these situations there is no percipitating event, they just happen.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 5 stars.

Purchasing Information: I purchased this book at Barnes & Noble for $10.99, paperback edition.

5 thoughts on “One Event, Many Lives Changed|Book Review

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