Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Book Review: Columbine by Dave Cullen

Title: Columbine
Author: Dave Cullen
Pages: 496 pages
Release Date: March 3, 2010
Publisher: Twelve
Genre: History; Crime
My Rating: 5/5

"The tragedies keep coming. As we reel from the latest horror . . . " So begins a new epilogue, illustrating how Columbine became the template for nearly two decades of "spectacle murders." It is a false script, seized upon by a generation of new killers. In the wake of Newtown, Aurora, and Virginia Tech, the imperative to understand the crime that sparked this plague grows more urgent every year.

What really happened April 20, 1999? The horror left an indelible stamp on the American psyche, but most of what we "know" is wrong. It wasn't about jocks, Goths, or the Trench Coat Mafia. Dave Cullen was one of the first reporters on scene, and spent ten years on this book-widely recognized as the definitive account. With a keen investigative eye and psychological acumen, he draws on mountains of evidence, insight from the world's leading forensic psychologists, and the killers' own words and drawings-several reproduced in a new appendix. Cullen paints raw portraits of two polar opposite killers. They contrast starkly with the flashes of resilience and redemption among the survivors.

I've been wanting to read this one for awhile. It kept popping up in my radar throughout the years. Understandably, the motive behind this tragedy is super interesting. The "dyad phenomenon." Cullen did a fantastic job, I'm not so sure we could ask for anything more.

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