Synopsis: 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.
The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class.
The auditorium doors won’t open.
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.
Review: I fully anticipated This Is Where It Ends to be good. It’s not – ‘good’ isn’t an adequate description of Marieke Nijkamp debut. Let’s try stunning or amazing. Better words, still not sure if they are enough though.
Here’s a rundown of what happened: I got the book, read, cried, sent a lot of messages and emoticons (mostly hearts, some crying ones), finished reading and curled up in a tight ball. Why am I telling you this? Because it’s clear that This Is Where It Ends will be an emotional read before you start. I had prepared myself for that, what blew me away was just how much of an impact particular moments would have. There are two that just won’t leave me and I can’t tell you which because that would be spoiling.
Giving the in short timeline I’m so impressed by how much Marieke Nijkamp makes you care about four narrators, actually all the characters (one of the most poignant moments for me was about another student). The pacing, back-story and character development is well balanced. Once the students know they’re locked in the auditorium the tension sets in, then the shooting starts and your nerves go to because it might only have been a few pages but you’re already half in love with Autumn, Tomás and the others. That feeling never leaves you. I still can’t stop thinking about those characters (I got sniffly just writing this review) and being able to do that is AMAZING.
This Is Where It Ends is heart-breaking in the best possible way.
Truly a wonderful debut.
Order This Is Where It Ends here:
Marieke Nijkamp was born and raised in the Netherlands. A lifelong student of stories, language, and ideas, she is more or less proficient in about a dozen languages and holds degrees in philosophy, history, and medieval studies. She is a storyteller, dreamer, globe-trotter, geek. Her debut young adult novel This Is Where It Ends, a contemporary story that follows four teens over the course of the fifty-four minutes of a school shooting, will be published by Sourcebooks Fire in January 2016.