If nothing more, this book was an incredibly engaging read. I seriously could not stop reading it for more than 5 minutes without needing to go back to it. Every time a patron or a coworker needed my attention, I lamented the fact that I had to stop reading in order to help them. Nevertheless, I love my job, so I did what was requested of me… And then ran back to read some more!
In about 4 hours — a “broken” 4 hours, mind you — I read this book from front to back. Rather astonishing if you are privy to how many of my books need to be renewed so that I can finish them! Some of the passages are scandalous; others shocking; and some are simply chilling. Most importantly of all, though, this entire book rang true to me. As a former high school student AND a former high school teacher, I found myself drawing parallels between these characters and the students, teachers, and administrators I have known. Bildner certainly didn’t hold anything back, and I think it would behoove a lot of adults to pay attention to books and movies that portray this reality.
The only thing that I disliked about this book is the sudden ending. Perhaps that will be changed before the final draft is published. I think I will have to re-read this book [in its final form] just to try and wrap my mind around the whole thing a little better. It worked as a whole, but a few parts felt stiff and jagged. Like I said in my earlier post, though, this is an advance reader copy. I guess it may simply be that the “suddenness” of the ending left too many questions with me. But, that may have been Bildner’s point in ending the book like this. Sure, you know what happens with most of the characters… But that last little nagging question keeps popping up. What about him?
If you need to know who he is and why I care what happened to him, though, you’re going to need to read the book.