First of all, Lionel Shriver is a woman. I don't know why that should make a difference, but just like it changes how you say someone's name if you know how it is spelled - Sean, or Shawn, it does make a little difference.
Second, holy cow! What a book. It took me about 100 pages to get into it, and I wasn't sure I would like it in the beginning, because the narrator is not easy to like. But suddenly, I was wondering where my Sunday went, because I didn't get off the couch. This is not an easy book to read, it may challenge some ideas, it may make you think, it may make you scared, very scared, but you won't forget Kevin.
Plot summary, from the back cover:
In this gripping novel of motherhood gone awry, Lionel Shriver approaches the tragedy of a high-school massacre from the point of view of the killer's mother. In letters written to the boy's father, mother Eva probes the upbringing of this more-than-difficult child and reveals herself to have been the reluctant mother of an unsavory son. As the schisms in her family unfold, we draw closer to an unexpected climax that holds breathtaking surprises and its own hard-won redemption.
The big question after one of these shooting incidents, is always, why? Eva, the mother, takes us through Kevin's life and her own, to look for these answers. She is brutally honest about herself and how she saw things, but it is only her perspective in the end. There are parts where you will cringe with uncomfortableness, with sympathy, and with a 'there, but for the grace of God, go I'.
I don't like to put spoilers in a review, and I won't, but I would really like to talk to somebody who has read this book. This would make a great discussion book, especially among parents and teachers. Dewey picked this book for her Something About Me list, because she is the parent of a high school boy and a high school teacher. I teach high school, and my kids are younger, but it still had a great impact. Thanks, dewey, for the suggestion, I am really glad I read this one.