[REVIEW] That’s NOT What Happened

A warning: This book will show what happens after school shootings and how the victims cope and relive what they experienced.

Leanne Bauer was one of six survivors of Virgil County High School‘s shooting. But her story has not been fully told. Now, she is writing a letter to those who need to know the truth and to show that those who passed were more than just names in an obituary.

This book really pushes the limits of how the students themselves perceive the event as opposed to what others want to see out of these shootings. With shootings being so prevalent in today’s society, this book really emphasizes that people were hurt in more ways than one. Altogether, it was a great read and I highly recommend this young adult fiction.

Oh No’s

The beginning switched between memories and current time way too much. From past to present, I was left confused about which way was even up. Luckily, this stopped after the first ‘chapter’ and the time stayed mostly consistent throughout the rest of the book.

I loved that Lee was asexual! It was such great representation. But the extrapolations just did not fit in with the story to me. Actually, when they introduced her as ace I was so happy cause we would finally get platonic relationships and not forced romance. I was wrong (forgive the slight but obvious spoiler). Even though I can forgive this because aside from this minor flaw in my opinion, the book was great.

One last Oh No was the constant repetition of the bathroom scene. I understand the necessity for it, but at the end it just felt like I had already heard everything about a thousand times before.


Denny’s point of view of the shooting was such a great way to grab our attention. His blatant honesty just opened my eyes and really drew me into this book. Leanne’s time jumping was starting to lose me but this letter brought me back in.

The shooters name was blacked out and never mentioned. I absolutely love this. These people— these kids— their reasons are many but one we will not give is the honor of knowing even who they were.

Each victim had a sort of obituary in memoriam of them. It was so realistic and such a unique gesture that made this book realer than it was.

Now, this was an Advanced Readers Copy that I snagged at Bookcon. That’s NOT What happened by Kody Keplinger will be released August 28 by Scholastic. This novel was an experience to read and it is really heart wrenching. Through and through, this story was quite the page turner. It succeeded in keeping you on the edge of your seat wanting to learn more about the truths of what happened on that day.

Click the link below to purchase this lovely book in all it’s glory.

That’s Not What Happened

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