Welcome back to my Top 10 favourite LGBTQ+ young adult novels that I read in 2016!
Coming in at Number 8 is an intense book that was a #1 New York Times bestseller!
It’s Marieke Nijkamp’s This Is Where It Ends.
The tag line on the cover (since it’s so small in the picture) says, “Everyone has a reason to fear the boy with the gun.” AND YES THEY DO.
But first, the blurb:
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.
So when I first started this book, I didn’t know it was LGBT+. I just knew that it had buzz and sounded really good. And then I was pleasantly surprised to discover that two of the four main characters are a lesbian couple. Dahlia Adler included This Is Where It Ends on her Under the Gaydar feature over on LGBTQ Reads because it’s a book that you may not realize right away that it has queer content. But it does, and it’s amazing. So there’s that.
But also, the book is heavy. It’s a heavy subject matter and it’s one of those books that will leave you thinking. Like, a lot. It is so intense. Like the blurb says, the whole story happens over the course of 54 minutes, and I found it so hard to put this book down.
Nothing is held back and this book is sometimes difficult to read, but we need books like this. Books that have things to say, and this book is one of them.
Here’s one of my favourite quotes from it:
“There are no words in that fleeting moment between hope and the knowledge. There is no way to express how a heart can burst and break at the same time, how the sun can cut through the darkness but will cast shadows everywhere.”
Check back tomorrow for book #7!