Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Monday Monday-Elizabeth Crook

Monday Monday Elizabeth Crook Sarah Crichton Books/FSG, Apr 29 2014, $26.00 ISBN: 9780374228828 On a hot day in August 1966 as the Mamas and the Papas sing Monday, Monday, Marine veteran Charles Whitman carries weapons to the top of the bell tower at the University of Texas at Austin. Using his high ground position as a sniper, he begins shooting at those on the plaza below; killing sixteen people and wounding over thirty more before the police shoot Whitman dead. Student Shelly Maddox watches a person she knows die near her while she is shot in the breast and arm. In class, Wyatt Calvert hears the shots and looks out the window to see the blood and gore. He calls his wife to tell her to stay where she is before rushing out, and joined by his cousin Jack, to rescue those injured including Shelly, but Wyatt takes bullets in his legs. That fatal day forges a bond between the cousins and Shelly; as each struggle with emotional traumas, and Wyatt and Shelly with physical scars. Over the next four decades, the trio finds their lives changing, but each knows that Monday Monday in 1966 remains the lethal pivotal moment that shaped who they became. This is a powerful epic that makes a strong case that survivors of a mass shooting never fully connect with others except for those who were there and never move; as even those like the cousins who displayed courage under fire remain haunted. Over forty years before the Virginia Tech tragedy, Elizabeth Crook captures the harrowing impact of the Texas Tower mass murders that becomes imprinted in the souls of those who lived through it and the loved ones of those who did not. Harriet Klausner

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