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The Events of October: Murder-Suicide on a Small Campus
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The Events of October: Murder-Suicide on a Small Campus

4.37 of 5 stars 4.37  ·  rating details  ·  57 ratings  ·  20 reviews
On a Sunday night during Homecoming weekend in 1999, Neenef Odah lured his ex-girlfriend, Maggie Wardle, to his dorm room at Kalamazoo College and killed her at close range with a shotgun before killing himself. In the wake of this tragedy, the community of the small, idyllic liberal arts college struggled to characterize the incident, which was even called "the events of ...more
Paperback, 317 pages
Published September 13th 2010 by Painted Turtle Book
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Jane
This is actually more of a sociological study than your typical true crime book. The crime took place at K College, a highly respected college only 45 minutes away from where I live.

It was intriguing to read of the faculty members' reactions to the crime, the political aspects of how to view it (was it a tragedy or violence against women), how to comfort friends of the perpetrator, and the effect it had upon close friends of the couple.

Actual text messages from days and weeks preceding the crime
...more
Kirsten
This book is essentially impossible for me to rate or review in a traditional sense. I can take about six steps back and say this is an important work, it's a well-written work, and it's the kind of thing everyone, particularly people who work with young people, should read.

I can't rate it or review it traditionally, though, because I lived it. This was my campus, where I was an RA in the dorm next door and knew nearly every single name that appears on these pages, if not personally, than to pic
...more
Justin Leatherwood
This book helped shape my perspective on violence against women and helped me understand an extremely powerful event that took place on my college's campus over 10 years ago.

Hard to read because the contents are horrifying, but well worth it.

Highly recommended.
Karen
This terribly tragic story tells about a murder-suicide on a private college just down the street from where I went to university. It happened, when I was in middle school and I had no idea about it until I stumbled across this book at my favorite bookstore in the world, Kazoo Books. I'm so glad I found this book because it carefully set the plot describing Kalamazoo College with vivid descriptions, laid out the characters, and began telling the story about the warning signs and conflicts prior ...more
Jeremy
This book haunted me. This is my second Gail Griffin book, and I knew, of course, that she was a good writer. But at first, this book wasn't particularly strong in its prose styling. It came across as journalism, personalized journalism to be sure, but not very deftly worded. But as the story went on, Gail's unmistakable gifts as a writer became more prominent. And from the start, her deep humanism shown through. She has sympathy for everyone here, even the murderer, and especially for the murde ...more
Frandy
Especially poignant for me, given I am an alumna of this college and I have just returned from my own 40th reunion. Well written and researched, the fiber of this tragedy left me speechless and saddened. Though the horrific murder/suicide occurred in 1999 and the book published in 2009, I hadn't heard about this until now. Aside from the story itself, there is much information about violence against women in society at large and on college campuses.
Kathy Ginocchio
I just read this book and I can't give it 5 stars only because of the subject matter. It's hard to say you LOVED LOVED a book when it is about murder/suicide on a college campus. I found this book to be gripping and fascinating and deeply disturbing. It attempts to analyze how and why such a thing could happen, and puts this specific instance of violence into the larger context of femicide/violence against women. I found myself wondering what the author could possibly have to say in the second h ...more
Suzanne
I was first drawn to this book because it concerns the college where I spent my freshman year, and also because it was written by my academic advisor at the time, but what drew me in was Griffin's compelling narrative and analysis of the 1999 murder of student Maggie Wardle by her ex-boyfriend Neenef Odah with a hunting rifle, and his subsequent suicide. Far from being a salacious true crime story, Griffin frames this event with an examination of male violence against women.

In addition to detail
...more
Matt
I was drawn to this book for two reasons: 1. The author is one of my favorite professors from my undergraduate years, and 2. I was a few weeks into my freshman year at Kalamazoo College (the small campus of the title) when these events transpired. That I can directly recall many of the events in the book and know many of the people interviewed made it especially poignant for me. Even with my obvious biases for this book, I found it to be a very engaging and fascinating account of a profoundly sa ...more
Alice
The story about the murder-suicide at Kalamazoo College in 1999. It gives a good idea of what a young man went through, trying to please his father, who came here from the middle east and fit in at a small, private college. He becomes obsessed with his girlfriend and after they break up,he kills her and himself. the author, who is a professor of English, tries to explore partner violence, gun accessibility and depression and suicide on campus.
I found it quite interesting.
Julie
This book was a tough subject matter and hard at times to read without cringing, but so well written. I loved the style in which Gail Griffin used to document this horrific incident. I called my own 14 year old daughter several times to listen to certain passages, hoping that she can begin to learn now, before she starts dating, the warning signs in men she should be aware of.
Elizabeth Grace
What an excellent book. I found myself crying through a good half of it. It was recommended to me by a friend who runs domestic abuse programs in Austin, Texas. She knew I went to K College, and urged me to give it a read. I'm so glad I did. It is a beautifully written, compelling story, as well as an informed, critical analysis of, "the why of it all."
Steevigh
Overall I liked the book...there was a bit too much about debate whether it was a Femicide/murder-suicide/domestic abuse etc. for my liking. It seemed to me like the author was trying to push her agenda, rather than giving the reader the facts of what happened. All of that portion was hard to read (boring) and slowed the pace of the book.
Amel Omari
Chilling read, an authentic glimpse into life at this small college, and a gripping account of how communities and individuals deal with a tragedy like the murder/suicide that occurred at Kalamazoo College in October of 1999.
Zinta
Author interview and book review with Gail Griffin in The Smoking Poet's Fall 2010 Issue, online in mid September 2010.

www.thesmokingpoet.com
Wendy Malish
Required reading for every young adult in order to recognize the signs of abuse - mental and physical.
Kirsten


Re-reading for book club, June 2012
Wendy
Wow, it is really hard to put down ...
Verm
Excellent! Could not put it down.
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