By Diedre-McKenna Scudder
This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp, is a breathtaking realistic-fiction novel that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
This book takes place in a small town by the name of Opportunity, in Alabama. It’s about the very relevant topic, a school shooting.This event is portrayed by four very different characters perspectives, Sylv, Autumn, Claire, and Tómas, all of which have some sort of a relationship with the shooter.
In my opinion, having the story told through various perspectives quite was overwhelming at first. Eventually, I adapted to this type of layout but I do think it could be hard for many readers to adjust to. It was easy to differentiate the characters due to their defined personalities. It is very hard to pull off a story with multiple perspectives and it seemed as if the author tried a little too much to push the diversity among the characters. I will give the author credit because it really did make the story a lot more interesting to see the event through different perspectives.
Another thing about this book that I personally did not like was the poor character development. I found it hard to make connections with the characters due to the fact that it was rushed. Even though these characters were high school students, I could not relate to them on a personal level. It could just be because I have not had the same interactions or experiences as them. I felt as if the author’s main goal was toprovide as much detail about the characters, but it felt more like just information being stated to me. I really wanted it to make the reader understand and feel as if they are friends with the character. To fix this issue, it would’ve been better if the author mainly focused on only one or two characters.
That being said, the overall theme of the book was very well developed. I thought the author conveyed the image of the horrific event very well and made the reader feel as if they were in the situation that the main characters were in. I would rate this book a 3 out of 5. I still really do recommend this book in order to educate and inform students about events like this. It really made me as the reader get a glimpse of the thoughts and feelings going through the students’ heads. This book is an eye opener and a great warning.
Overall, I did take away a lesson from this book to never take anyone or anything for granted. Before reading this book, you should know that is a very sensitive subject; if you have experienced or know of someone who has been apart of a school shooting, then maybe this book isn’t for you.