A Mother’s Reckoning: Sue Klebold


Sue Klebold, the mother of one of the perpetrators of Columbine High School shooting – which ranks as one of the worst high school tragedies in US – presents her side of the story.  How in a perfectly normal household of loving, caring parents, her son Dylan, defying all the teachings of his growing up years, participated in  a massacre that left fifteen kids dead and twenty four injured.  At a very fundamental level, it is a wake up alarm for all parents with teenage kids.  It is a chilling account of deceiving abilities of kids – that what they want to hide from their parents – they will.   Klebold’s struggle to accept the reality and her son’s accountability for the death of many children is engaging.  Her tale of the shock she felt, the guilt with which she lived and how she turned it around to support suicide survivors is a heart-rending story.  The writing is a bit circular and the book could have been shorter but the book scores with its content.



A Brief History of Seven Killings: Marlon James


The Booker Award winner of 2015, ‘A brief History of Seven Killings’, at 687 pages, is anything but brief.  It is an intense account of Jamaican ghettos, drug lords and politics there including America’s meddling at the height of the communist era.  It is a bit difficult to follow – particularly in the beginning – but then so many of the greatest books didn’t make any sense in the first thirty pages (One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Midnight’s Children) but where this one goes wrong  is being obscure in the middle, where there are parts where you don’t really know what’s going on.  However, on the whole, it is an engrossing book and captures Jamaica really well.

Recommendation: Read