An amazing, amazing, heart-rendingly honest book by Sue Klebold, mother of Dylan Klebold. Dylan Klebold, along with Eric Harris, was one of the teenagers involved in the shooting at Columbine High School on April 20th 1999 which left 15 people dead, 24 people wounded physically, and numerous others with the mental trauma that ensued from the event. Ever since, Sue Klebold has been struggling to come to terms not only with the actual events, but with her own feelings about the shooting, about her son, about the months and days leading up to April 20th – even about her core values and ability as a parent.
In ‘A Mother’s Reckoning,’ Sue leaves no stone unturned as she examines every scrap of evidence available to her, talks to numerous experts and shares her innermost thoughts and feelings as she attempts not only to come to terms with, but also to move forward with dignity from the devastating revelation that her beloved son is a murderer. What she does not ignore and yet highlights with great sensitivity so as not to undermine the feelings of the victims’ families, and without making any excuses for his actions, is the fact that Dylan died by suicide; his mental health was such that he could see no other way out than to end his torment and turn his gun on himself – sadly, choosing to take so many other much-loved people with him – and therein lies the unknowable as Dylan took the reasons why with him.
Not only is ‘A Mother’s Reckoning’ an autobiography and a personal memoir, it is also a superbly written book, planned and written methodically and expressed articulately, demonstrating huge emotional intelligence in ruthlessly scrutinising her own reactions while simultaneously validating the responses of the many other victims of the tragedy.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this book and give it a full 5 stars.