PUBLISHER: Sourcebooks Fire
DATE PUBLISHED: 5th January 2016
10:00 a.m. The principal of Opportunity 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 a.m. The auditorium doors won’t open.
10:05 a.m. Someone starts shooting.
Told from four different perspectives over the span of fifty-four harrowing minutes, terror reigns as one student’s calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival.
This book was told in chapter entries based on time frames of a couple of minutes. There were four points-of-view that were reflected within this book: Clare, Tomas, Autumn, and Sylv. One of the perspectives was that of the sister of the shooter. Another interesting element of this book was that there were texts and social media updates that were included so the reader could get a feel of how this event was effecting the community.
Over a relatively short time frame each character goes through a change. It is interesting to see the priorities of these individuals change. Each characters has had a major development and change in their lives by the end of the book.
Relationships: The different relationships of every character and how, in such a small town, everyone was linked together was an element in this book. There is a LGBT relationship in this book that was interesting to read.
Fear: Fear can be considered to be a theme in this novel. Each character faces this particular emotion through the book and the reader gets a look at how they manage their fear.
Grief: By the end of this book every character is facing death, dying and grief in one way or another. This can be seen from the characters within the school and those waiting on baited breath outside.
An examination of a dark topic that leaves you short of breath and doesn’t pull any punches.
The premise of this book was really interesting, the subject matter is something that I have not read anything on before and has potential to be done really badly. This subject matter should not be undertaken lightly and one should be aware of themselves before making the decision to pick this book up.
I’ve ended up giving this book a 3.5 / 5. This is a really tough subject to write about and may be tough for some to read. There are some times when the it almost feels like the characters all are portrayed as victims and not individuals but these moments are few and far between.
Keep Calm and Read On,