Reviewed by Morgan
Title: It Was a Thursday
Author: Carol Lynne
Heroes: Mark Kurtz/Lane Warner
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 118 Pages
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: November 17, 2015
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: 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?
Review: Mark and his son, Max, have lived through what makes most of us parents shudder in fear: a school shooting. Scott (aka Skittles) Brown opened fire and killed several students and himself just months before and the community is having a hard time recovering.
In addition to the media circus, Mark has his own particular brand of guilt about this. Though Mark has done amazing things as the principal of the school towards eradicating bullying, he didn’t do (what he perceives) was the one thing that would have helped stop this tragedy.
Lane is a trauma psychologist called in to help the community. He and Mark were roommates at Duke and when their friendship turned more romantic, Mark freaked and cut ties with Lane for the last 20 years. His showing up only highlights Mark’s feelings of guilt and shame.
Together, Mark and Lane, with the support of Mark’s amazing son, Max, learn to navigate an adult relationship and make a plan to help the community heal.
Fair warning, this is a HEAVY story. It doesn’t pull any punches and it hurts at times to read.
Mark and Lane have an awful past, and it was so sad to read about all the time lost to bad decision making.
The tragedy at the school is complex and painful and Mark’s reaction to it is understandable if not necessarily fair.
I enjoyed this and think many people will as well, it’s a very well-written and touching story.
I have to round it down to a 4 for a couple of reasons.
I didn’t like the ending. It seemed very rushed and felt unsatisfying. Mark essentially pulls a 180, and I didn’t feel like I understood his motivation. I also felt that the response the community had was very unfair and (maybe that’s reality, but maybe not) I wanted it to end differently for him.
I thought Mark and Lane’s reconciliation happened way too easily. Lane felt more like a doormat and that’s in direct contrast to his personality. I think this would have been better as a longer book with a slower build up to the reconciliation and a slower resolution.
But… it was a very good book and I do recommend it and give it 4 of 5 stars.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*