January 31, 2017

Favorite Books · Violent Ends




For those of you who don't know, which may be the vast majority of you, I have a fascination with True Crime, particularly school shooter, and more recently, Dylann Roof. I don't know where this comes from, but it started with Columbine, and has become a huge interest of mine. My biggest gimmick into this world is the psychology behind young adults who are around my age seeing the world as they do. Please note, I don't condone any of their actions, I'm only interested in the cases and psychology behind it.

This has spanned beyond non-fiction, and into Teen Fiction where I found Violent Ends, recommended by a co-worker. This novel is told from seventeen different perspectives, each perspective written by a different author, revolving around boy named Kirby Matheson who causes a shooting at his high school.

Seventeen different voices, including the gun (potentially the most interesting chapter in the novel. though not my favorite), all telling confessionals of grief, guilt, adoration, confusion, and guilt. Although that's a lot of perspectives, none of them are told by Kirby, which I really think works here, because too many novels are focused on the perpetrator and their reason behind it, but rarely do you hear stories from, for example, Teddy, Kirby's friend from summer camp years ago. 

My favorite chapters, which you can read more about beneath the spoilers warning, were Abby and Jenny. The ending to Abby's chapter took my breath away, to the point where my mind was too blown by the plot twist that I needed to stop reading for the night. Jenny is Kirby's girlfriend, and this segues into a novel idea that I've been playing with for a while, but am a little scared to execute. What happens when you're in love with somebody capable of doing something so heinous? 

My favorite thing about the book may be that most of the perspectives are from character's who are sod developed, regardless their distance from Kirby, which is astounding. The writing is incredible, and everything comes together at the end. I want to wrap this up by saying that every author who contributed did an incredible job, and I like that they didn't give Kirby one sole reason to commit the crime, rather they gave everybody small reasons that potentially contributed to it, and it grounded the novel making it more human.

**Spoilers Ahead**

My favorite chapters were Abby (or Ms. Leeland whaaaaaaaaaat?!?!) and his girlfriend, Jenny, who he takes to a coffee shop the day of that's located on the other side of town, and asks her to run in while he drives off and leaves her there so she doesn't get hurt! Abby blew my mind, for lack of a better phrase. She's stalking his house, sitting outside of his window, and sends him an email to see him in her office the next morning, and that's the last dialogue of the chapter, and I was left breathless with my heart racing. How weird was that.

I also thought Jenny was such a sweet love interest, especially her focus on following his shoes. Their romance is grounded, sweet, puppy-like, if you will. And it's refreshing to show that Kirby is capable of having such wonderful feelings of love, and this maybe wasn't because he was so lonely, which is a different perspective from what I'm used to reading in regards to young men getting involved in mass killings. 

The whole book was beautiful, easily five-stars for keeping it grounded, believable, and striking every emotion inside of me. 
You can see what else I'm reading here.

Post a Comment

© Layne Joy. Design by FCD.