Eva Leger's Reviews > Columbine

Columbine by Dave Cullen
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's review
May 24, 12

bookshelves: b-non-fiction
Read from May 12 to 16, 2012

I bought this when it first came out and then shelved it. I saw a few friends read it over time and always meant to get to it which only just this month has finally happened. I'm glad it did - Cullen is a fantastic author. I closed this book feeling like I finally knew something about what happened and who the people involved were and are. Not just Harris and Klebold but the victims and families as well.
Patrick Ireland and Brian Rohrbough especially.
It sickens me how some people act when tragedies happen. The man making money from the publicity on his crosses for instance, how can any human being be so utterly devoid of humanity?
The religious people who, even when faced with what is many times taken as fact, insist they'll use Cassie Bernall's "martyrdom" to their advantage. These are Christ's leaders? No thank you.
Cassie didn't need to be a "martyr", real or fake, for this to be the worst kind of tragedy. Her denying the Lord, or God never coming up makes this no less tragic. How about letting go of the fiction and dealing with the facts?
Dealing with the facts is what Cullen did from what I can gather. I knew next to nothing about what happened at Colombine before this book. I knew there was a school shooting, I knew Klebold's and Harris' names, and I knew the rumors about the two being bullied were supposedly fake. That's it. I had never heard of Ireland, Rohrbough, Bernall before. I had never heard of Dave Sanders. I knew next to nothing, literally.
Walking away from this book I felt I knew a lot more. I definitely would have liked some photos to be included. As it is I had to Google whatever I wanted to view. I don't understand the lack of any photos in the book at all. This is the exact kind of book where most readers want the photos. There not being any pictures was a small price to pay for the story though. I'm happy Cullen took his time with it and did his research. Shooting it out right away wouldn't have done anyone any good.
A few things I don't understand or that I consider noteworthy:
How Eric had, among other things, a sawed-off shotgun barrel, ammunition laying on his bed, gloves with the fingertips cut off, fireworks and bomb materials on his desk, dresser, windowsill, wall and other places. A page from The Anarchist Cookbook was also found along with packaging for a new gas can and shards of glass.
Someone please explain to me how Mr. and Mrs. Harris failed to see all of this? This stuff wasn't even relegated to his bedroom. Things were found in the backyard! There IS such a thing as too much space when it comes to others, especially teenagers. Especially teenagers with anger issues. Depression. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc.
I find it interesting that Eric was smart enough to hack into games, create his own games, etc. Not everyone can do this. I wouldn't know where to begin. He could have used this intelligence in so many ways if he had just given himself the chance.
I had other notes but I've waited too long to review this. I'd suggest reading it even if you already think you know, or actually do know, a lot on the subject. It's heartbreaking in a severe way.
Seeing Brian's body lying on that sidewalk and Patrick hanging from that window is gut-wrenching. The S.W.A.T. and others who initially did the rescuing - I can't imagine what was going on in their heads and hearts.
That brings me to the police. The fact that police stations can hide facts and skew facts and lie outright to not only the public but the families of the victims is almost as disgusting as what Eric and Dylan chose to do. They all deserve to lose their jobs, pensions, everything IMO. There is no room for secret meetings and covering for one another to make sure the truth doesn't get out. I would like to say I hope it couldn't happen now but that's a joke and I damn well know it. I hope each and every one of them involved know they added to the grief of each of the living victims, there's no way they didn't. Then again, I doubt their the type of people who care about that sort of thing.
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Reading Progress

05/14/2012 page 196
47.0% "I've read som hard, hard books and I've still put this down more than once and cried like a baby. This is so hard to read and so well written."

Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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bjneary Eva, I couldn't put thhis book down---you will find it compelling!

message 2: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Leger I think I will too. Did you see the negative reviews of this here on GR? I sometimes will look at the glowing reviews and the one stars with a book like this, talked about so much I mean. A few people state she's untruthful or false about quite a few things.
I'm a little worried about that because I don't know enough facts to know whether info is real or not and I don't want to be misled......

bjneary I lived through the the Columbine disaster and I believe Dave Cullen, took responsibility for the errors he made at the beginning as a reporter and he worked 10 long exhaustive years to give honest insight into what really happened and I think he did a great job. I have only read glowing reviews, so now I am going to poke around Goodreads and see what I can find--thanks!

message 4: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Leger Thanks bj, I trust you and your opinion more than strangers so I wanted to ask. That makes me much more glad to have bought it! I see I have it listed on some wrong lusts too which I have to fix...

bjneary Eva, thanks and let me know what you think!

message 6: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Leger I will! I'm going to start it very soon - in the next few days. I've been waiting so long for it that I can't possibly wait any longer!

bjneary I have had that problem, books that were on my list and when I finally get to them and LOVE THEM, I wish I had gotten to them sooner, but there is so much to read! I just take them one at a time...

message 8: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Leger My 'few days' turned into over two years! I just started it this morning and I'm already into it. I think I'll learn a lot because like I said above, I only know the very basics.
I hope you get the notification for this comment since its been so long! :-)

Wendy Absolutely was fascinated by this book. Really enjoyed it. Not that I enjoyed the horror of the situation, I enjoyed the way the author told it. It brought a horrible situation with so many details and theories into a "story" i could follow easily.

bjneary Hi Eva, this book is so powerful and I know you will enjoy it- I learned alot, since I had believed the original reports----Cullen uncovers great secrets! It has been too long:)

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