This Is Where It Ends
By: Marieke Nijkamp
Release Date: January 5, 2016
Source: ARC from BEA
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review
10:00 a.m. 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. 10:02 a.m. The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class. 10:03 The auditorium doors won't open. 10:05 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. (Goodreads)
This is Where it Ends is a powerful story that tackles a topic that I haven't seen much of in Young Adult books. It certainly left an impact on me and I still can't stop thinking about it.
This is Where it Ends is the story of a school shooting told from the perspective of four different characters. Claire, Tomas, Autumn, and Sylv are each affected differently by the shooting. However, each of their stories intricately come together.
The plot is paced fast and it all takes place within the time frame of the shooting. There were only a couple of flashbacks with each of the characters which provides you with a little bit of background to them. I read this book in one sitting because of how fast it was moving forward. On the other hand though, the fast pace meant that I never really connected to these characters. It took me a while to even differentiate between the four characters because they were all blending together at first. Each chapter jumps between all of the characters in these short passages. There were also these
pages with tweets randomly throughout the book and those just didn't flow with the story. Each time I came across one of those pages, it would take me out of the story.
I understand that everything is happening just as fast for these characters though and they are all in shock. This story doesn't shy
away from showing the violence, so it did become increasingly difficult to read at times. It absolutely left me with a heavy heart. I don't want to say too much more about this book. It wasn't until days passed since I finished reading that I really began to gain an appreciation for this book. It left me with so many unanswered questions, but that is what any school shooting does.
I think that the way This is Where it Ends was told will work for some readers and may be a turn off for other readers. I still recommend giving this book a chance though. It's a powerful story about an important topic.