Monday, April 18, 2016

Book Review: This Is Where It Ends (YA)

This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

Goodreads Summary:
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.

My Review:
The plot of this story was good, but unfortunately it wasn't executed as well as I would have liked. Nijkamp writes about a school shooting, which takes place over about an hour. She alternates between 4 character's points of view, all told in first person. I had a hard time keeping track of who was speaking because the POV changed about every 2-3 pages, sometimes more frequently. When I went back to count, I was surprised that there were only 4 narrators.

The problem I had was that all of the voices sounded the same. And the font was the same. Other than the character headings, I never knew who's head I was in. Even as the book progressed, the three girls kind of ran together. 

I enjoyed the back story on all of the characters, and the way that their lives were interwoven - one the ex-girlfriend of the shooter, one the sister of the shooter, one the sister's girlfriend, and one the sister's girlfriend's brother (and friend of the shooter, I think). I also enjoyed some of the ancillary characters. 

But I didn't feel a lot of emotion about what was going on. I was intrigued by the story, and I wanted to know how it would end, but I just expected to feel more. It was a quick read, but I don't think it will stay with me very long.

My Rating: 3 stars


  1. I feel like everyone has said the same thing about this one. That the voices weren't distinctive enough and not enough emotion. My library just got it so I will probably still give it a go just to see. Great review!

    1. Thanks. It's a quick read, so it's probably worth the time. The story is good. I just thought it could have been written better. :(

  2. Completely agree. I wanted to feel more as I read this and I thought the way the story was told got in the way of that.
    Jen @ YA Romantics

    1. I think the changing perspectives could have worked if there was more differentiation and personality in the characters. And more emotion in their experiences.

  3. I feel like there was so much hype around this book before it came out, and admittedly I got a little caught up in it. That's disappointing that it didn't make you feel enough; a plot like that should really keep the readers emotionally engaged. It's good to know there are problems with it though, so by the time I get to it my expectations will be realistic. Thanks for sharing, Kate!

    1. Yes, it was hyped big time. I feel like I read a lot of good reviews, but I was disappointed. I'm sure the hype contributed to it. I hope you have a better experience when you read it.