If I Don’t Make It, I Love You: Survivors in the Aftermath of School Shootings

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In 1966, Charles Whitman climbed the clock tower at the University of Texas in Austin and began shooting, killing fourteen people before he was killed. This was the beginning of a horrible chapter in America’s history: an ever-increasing series of school shootings that, unfortunately, seems to have no end. This amazing compendium of interviews, essays, memoirs, text messages conversations, part of a graphic novel, and more all have one thing in common: they are the words and reactions of survivors of these unbelievable, horrendous events. The people speaking here are teachers who lost students, students who watched their friends get gunned down, the parents who waited and waited to find out if it was their child or children lost that day, the children of teachers who were shot, siblings of those lost, and even the widow of a shooter. There is no question these events were life-changing for so many people, but how their lives changed is the real heart of this book. The daughter of the teacher killed at Columbine High School went on to become a psychologist working with felons convicted of violent crimes. Many survivors became authors of books that study the problem. Some created scholarship funds or awareness events that go on year after year. Some forgive, some can’t. The schools ranged from a small Amish one-room schoolhouse to sprawling high schools and colleges. The constants are that they keep happening, guns are always involved, the pain and loss are incalculable, and there is no resolution in sight. This book should be required reading for every legislator— federal and state— in this country. This is an important book, a well-written book, and one that will break readers’ hearts, but it is worth your time. Don’t miss it.


Reviewed By:

Author Edited by Amye Archer and Loren Kleinman
Star Count 5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 512 pages
Publisher Skyhorse
Publish Date 2019-09-03
ISBN 9781510746497
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue December 2019
Category Science & Nature
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