Everyone has a reason to fear the boy with the gun…
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.
In 54 minutes, four students must confront their greatest hopes, and darkest fears, as they come face-to-face with the boy with the gun.
I’ve had this book for a while and I’m so glad it came up on my August TBR so I finally had a reason to pick it up. I love the idea of this being set of 54 minutes and books set over a time period of a day or even an hour really intrigues me. I admire authors so much who can fill a whole book with such a short amount of time and still make it fast paced and full of action.
This book felt so important and a crucial read, but wasn’t without heartbreak and sadness. I read this over a couple of days where I had little time to read, and I still got through it so quickly and never wanted to put it down. It is the kind of book that would be super easy to read in one sitting as despite the heavy topics, it was very easy to read and hard to put down.
You can’t always keep your loved ones with you. You can’t always settle your life in one place. The world was made to change.
I liked the characters and I also enjoyed the fact this had 4 points of view. However, I felt like the execution of this wasn’t perfect. This book is fairly short at 280 pages and I just feel like we didn’t quite have enough time for the characters to build distinct personalities. I just didn’t feel as connected to the characters as I wanted to, and I feel like this one was crucial to have a connection to the characters in such a harrowing situation. I didn’t dislike the characters, I just didn’t feel they were as distinct from one another as I wanted them to be.
I really liked the atmosphere of this book and I feel like the writing captured the action really well. I felt like I was right there with the characters as they went through this horrific event. The writing was also so easy to read and created a great balance of being compelling without taking away from the nature of the difficult discussions throughout.
But as long as you cherish the memories and make new ones along on the way, no matter where you are, you’ll always be at home.
Overall, although this wasn’t perfect I did find this really enjoyable and would make a perfect one-sitting read!
4 out of 5 stars
May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽