Review: This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

Book Reviews

This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

4.5 Stars

This is not an easy book to read, but it is also a very moving and powerful story. This is Where it Ends is a story about a school shooting, it takes place in the span of 54 minutes and it is nerve-wracking. The students and teachers are trapped inside with the shooter and the reader gets to go on this terrifying journey with them. There are four different POV and while some people may not like this I think it added to the story. It allows the reader to see different sides of what’s going on during the shooting. Some of the characters are stuck inside with the shooter and others are on the outside worried for their friends and family. It lets you in on both sides of the story, the people who are experiencing the shooting first hand, and those on the outside scared for their friends and loved ones.

The writing in this book is really beautiful and heartbreaking. There were times when I just couldn’t put it down because I had to know what happened next and if the characters were safe. I really cared for the characters and felt their fear and pain while I was reading. This story just seemed very real to me, there are moments of bravery and utter terror from the characters and it easy to understand their actions and reasoning. All the POV characters are connected to the shooter in some way and their reactions and interpretations to why he does this adds so much to the story. This isn’t a random person doing this horrible thing, it’s somebody they know, someone they dated, even someone one of them is related to. Going through the emotions with these characters is intense.

The only thing I didn’t like about the book were the tweets and blog posts shown in between chapters from the students and others about the shooting. I just didn’t think they were necessary. I understand that they were there to show the good that social media can do and how it can help to connect people, but the book would have been just fine without them.

This is Where it Ends may not be for everyone. It is violent and the different POV may not work for some readers, but I think everyone should give it a chance. It’s an important topic and a really gripping story.

Book Info

This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
Published by Sourcebooks Fire
Pub Date: January 5th 2016
Pages: 292
Format: ARC | Source: Author
Genres: ContemporarySuspenseYoung Adult
Buy the book! | Goodreads

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.

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.

About Marieke Nijkamp

Marieke Nijkamp

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, is published by Sourcebooks Fire.

She is the founder of DiversifYA as well as founding member and advisor of We Need Diverse Books.

Tamara @ Gone with the Words

5 Responses to “Review: This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp”

  1. Ashley @ Gone with the Words

    Ashley @ Gone with the Words

    I’ve been on the fence about reading this one. I have the ARC but man…with a daughter in elementary school I just don’t know if I could do it. A friend described it as “disturbingly beautiful”. Great review!

    • Tamara @ Gone with the Words

      Tamara @ Gone with the Words

      Thank you! I know what you mean, this was pretty much my biggest fear in high school/college. I definitely agree that this is “disturbingly beautiful.”

    • Tamara @ Gone with the Words

      Tamara @ Gone with the Words

      Events like this should be talked about because they happen all the time and they’re scary. I understand what you mean about being in the right mood, it’s a heavy topic and not easy to read.

  2. Avatar

    Amber Sumner

    Thanks so much for posting! I saw the cover of this book awhile back a wondered if it was any good. Having been a teacher, this is a topic that is close to my heart and a very real threat in our society. I’m definitely adding this to my TBR list!

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