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A mass shooting in a movie theatre…

October 30, 2018

It’s been a while since I read a Nora Roberts novel, and as soon as I read the blurb of “Shelter in place”, I added it to the top of my reading pile!

Simone, Mi and Tish – best friends, sixteen years of age and waiting for the movie to start. The theatre in the DownEast Mall was busy, as was the mall outside the doors. Families shopping, people laughing and having a good time. Until the shots started, and the screaming began…

The book is divided into sections.  The first part is the shooting itself. How it began, how different people reacted, what the survivors experienced. It was sad, heart breaking and put the reader at the scene. The second part concentrates on several different characters and their lives after the shootings. The aftermath, not just the immediate time following the shooting, shows how this event has shaped their lives. The story does seem to jump around a bit, however it doesn’t matter as it is an integral part of the story.

The third section is a romance that develops between two of the characters, along with a murder-mystery of sorts. We know who did it the whole time, and we see that person’s viewpoint too, it was just a matter of them being caught. This final part reads more like Nora’s regular romance-mystery type stories. The female is artsy and a commitment-phobic girl. The male is a great guy who is trying to win her over. Overall, it was a great book, but there were tough moments. I think Nora did a good job imagining how living through an experience like that would affect the rest of the person’s life.

People are being shaped by events like mass shootings world wide, (at least 288 school shootings in the US since 2009;https://www.infoplease.com/us/crime/timeline-worldwide-school-and-mass-shootings ​​) and their lives are being altered by surviving. How adaptable a person is to trauma can really alter a person’s perspective, unfortuantely I don’t think we have seen the last of these horrific events and I find myself wondering how it will change – if we are now able to read (in detail) a love story which stems from these events, are we starting to expect this is the norm?

 

Fiona

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