It Was a Thursday, by Carol Lynne
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: December 15, 2015
Rating: 4 out of 5
Buy Links: Publisher
I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
It was a Thursday. The day one eighteen-year-old gunman would change the lives of an entire town.
Principal Mark Kurtz loved his school. He worked hard to give his students every advantage in life, but he could have never predicted that on a warm day in May, a distraught senior would commit an unimaginable act of vengeance on his classmates.
In the aftermath of the shooting that left both students and faculty members dead, Mark must deal with his own guilt while trying to help those around him feel safe once again.
Mark’s problems are compounded when an old flame, Lane Warner, arrives in town to help treat the trauma victims. How can he possibly deal with his own guilt, be there for his seventeen-year-old son and confront the part of himself he’s always denied while trying to heal a broken community?
This book hits really hard right from the start, because we live in a world now where school shootings are shifting from distant possibility to frightening probability. I was extremely nervous about reading this book, because there are so many ways this could be done poorly. Writing about a sensitive topic like a high school shooting has to be handled with care… but Carol Lynne did a phenomenal job.
The novel doesn’t cover the shooting itself, but instead the aftermath of a small town reeling from an unexpected and investigating event. Mark, the school principal, is wracked with guilt and nightmares.
But this is a story healing, not about tragedy.
I loved Mark. I loved his emotional conflicts, the way the layers are slowly pulled back so the root of his guilt is exposed. His internal battle as he tries to accept his feelings for Lane are very well done.
“You’ve been running from me for twenty years. Don’t you think it’s time we had this out once and for all?”
If you don’t mind a healthy dose of angst with your story, then this is definitely a novel to check out. While I’d shy away from calling it a flat-out romance, there is also a romantic plot that helps Mark and the rest of his family begin to come to terms. But mostly the novel is about making sense of something tragic, and about the support you need to overcome that.