Cover Image: #NotReadyToDie


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Member Reviews

I thought that #NotReadyToDie was scarily realistic and an important novel for young people to read. It touches on every parent's biggest fear but from the perspective of a teen. As a Canadian reader, I love that it was set in Toronto and particularly enjoyed the used of tweets to add another dimension to the story.
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The only good part of #NotReadyToDie is that it’s short. Reviewing will be difficult because Cate Carlyle’s story isn’t just bad, it’s terrible. Ginny, hiding under her desk during a school shooting, her crush Owen is shot and blood is dripping toward her, has time to narrate her life, her romantic hopes, history of self injury while teaming up with Kayla, a popular girl to nurse the wounded. I can guarantee, if we asked any of the Columbine or Parkland or other mass shooting survivors what they were thinking during a shooting, it wasn’t about the bleeding guy asking them to prom. #NotReadyToDie is an insult to teenagers and disrespectful to shooting survivors. Aside from a terrible premise, #NotReadyToDie is filled with 1990s cultural references that Carlyle needs to explain to readers, rendering them meaningless. I’ve read a number of very good YA novels centered around school shootings. Avoid #NotReadyToDie.
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This is a haunting tale of what happens one day when a shooter shows up at Southwestern High School. The students have recently undergone a training exercise in behavior during an active shooter crisis. Little did they know, that they would have to put that training into practice so very soon. As the students shelter in place in their classroom, they are forced to deal with trying to keep classmates and their teacher alive, as well as maintaining some semblance of order amid the terror, pain and chaos. Students who have not had much interaction with each other find that they must work together for the good of all. This also allows them the opportunity to learn about each other as they wait, hoping that they will make it out of the classroom alive.

Unfortunately, this has become an all too frequent reality. Students, parents, teachers are now forced to deal with this possibility, to train for it. They are forced to deal with the aftermath and the changes that take place in their minds, hearts and daily lives. This book provides an all too real look at what transpires when you are caught in the situation of an active shooter. It captures the emotional turmoil, the uncertainty, the terror, of not knowing if you will survive the situation. Because this is an all too real possibility, I do not want to say that I enjoyed the book, but I will say that it provided me with some insight. This is an excellent book for students, parents, basically everyone to read. Thank you to NetGalley, Common Deer and Cate Carlyle for the opportunity to review this book.
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This book was incredibly fast paced and considering the content, it was easy to read.
There have been many books released lately, with the subject focusing on school shootings, and as horrific as they are, they are important. Important in that it gives those who have been through it, an outlet, to see that they aren't alone, but it also shows others who have never been in that situation, a way to graps what it may be like. This book does that perfectly.

#notreadytodie encompasses a school shooting in a way that isn't confronting. it is intense, but it is more focussed on the students, the people and their emotions, what they are dealing with and how they are managing. There aren't any gory scenes, there is one death that we are privvy to, but it is peaceful. 

This is one of the better done books for me, on this subject, however it is only three stars because I felt like there was no real closure at the end. We went through the whole situation from start to finish, but there was never any closure reguarding what happened to the shooter. Yes we got to see the characters finally happy at prom, getting therapy and recovering from wounds mental and physical, but there just seemed to be something missing from the ending.

Well written and fast paced, this book is a great 'entry-level', if you like, way to look at school shootings. It is intense, but without any gore.
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Thank you Netgalley for sending me this arc. I will be reviewing this book in the near future with an honest rating and review.
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#NotReadyToDie is a short book (more of a novella really) that takes place during a school shooting in Canada. I thinking school shootings and gun control are important topics to be written and talked about if done well, though this book didn’t really discuss gun control issues. I would have liked to read more about the aftermath of the shooting. 

The main character is Ginny, a girl dealing with self-harm and the death of her father. Honestly, I didn’t really like her. I didn’t like how she continuously called Kayla ‘Barbie’ based off of her looks, even after she learned her real name. I liked Kayla ell enough, even though her character wasn’t explored as much as Ginny. Then there’s Ginny’s crush, who is shot. I thought it was a little cringey how she kept referring to him as “my own” even though he’s “friendzoned” already. It was also weird that as he’s bleeding from being shot, she’s thinking about asking him to prom.
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#NotReadyToDie is a book that talks about a mass shooting at a school. It is narrated through the point of view of the victims inside the classroom.

This book revolves around Ginny, who, to be honest, I hated for most of the book. She was prejudiced about most people and she was stereotyping everyone and giving them weird nicknames.

I think she was shallow and immature, and most of her thought processes during the shooting were too mundane for the sensitivity of the situation.

But, I have to admit, some teenagers are really wired this way. As someone who might be a decade older, I cannot really judge how simple or advance a mind can be.

Also, I'd like to think that people deal with trauma their own ways. She must be someone who brings her mind elsewhere instead of trying to absorb all the fear and terror in the situation. Or maybe that's just how I choose to see it.

Ginny has also slightly matured near the end of the book, so I have to give her points for that.

I have too agree to most reviews I have read that this book is too short to give weight to a mass shooting. The motive of the shooter was not even revealed in the book. There was not much described about the shooting itself. It was fully expressed through the mind of a single person.

The reason why I am bumping my rating up to a 4, is because I think this book, though not perfect, is a good way to open discussions about situations like this. It can open a way for parents, teachers, and children to talk about mass shootings and similar tragic events.

Overall, I think this is still a good read and deserves to be read by many young adults.
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This book held so much potential but didn't quite reach it. There were moments of suspense which ended too soon and moments of expected development which just never reached their height. I think it was an interesting topic to read about, especially as a Brit who only sees school shootings on the news and has thankfully never had to live through that fear. However the characters were just a bit bland and felt like they were missing something.
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As her first debut fiction novel, I was instantly interested by the sound of #NotReadyToDie by Cate Carlyle. I have a morbid curiosity when it comes to books about school shootings to see what people’s takes on situations like this are.

In #NotReadyToDie, we follow Ginny and her classmates as they are locked in a classroom as a gunman brings down terror all over their school. I love how we got to see so many new sides of characters. Ginny had this preconceived notion about her classmates at the beginning based on behavior she had witnessed or just by the titles they held around school. Yet, she later finds that they have a lot more in common than she thought. I think that is an important lesson for anyone. I also think it would hold true in this scenario. You don’t know what people are truly capable of until put into high intensity situations.

I also feel like the second guessing about behaviors and last conversations is a reality for those in an active shooter situation. Will the last thing I said to someone be how they remember me? I don’t really hate them, but I said I did. That guilt feeling has to be something real for people who have gone through this. I am appreciative that not everyone in this story came out with sunshine and rainbows. I think that’s a sad reality when we talk of school shootings. There’s always someone who doesn’t get out it seems.

I feel that as someone who has never been in an active shooter scenario, #NotReadyToDie gives a good angle on what it could be like inside. I felt anxious for these kids and I feel like the social media aspect was definitely one a lot of people could relate to. There is a window to the outside world when you are trapped.

I recommend this novel to those not of the faint of heart. It does have some harsh realities and may not be for everyone, but I think there are some great lessons to learn on a judgement or standpoint. It was a good book. I’ll pick up Cate Carlyle’s next novel too.
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This book was OK but needed a lot more depth and length. I liked the fact that it focused on the students and their experiences rather than the identity of the shooter. The characters could be fleshed out a lot more and their back stories explored. The ending was a little abrupt and a bit weird. (Why did only two students out of the whole school win an award?) The book could also have been made better by writing in the present rather the past because we then have a better idea of who survived. I'd like to see this novella fleshed out into a novel because I think that the writer has a lot more that could be added to this story.
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#NotReadyToDie can come across as offensive to survivors of school shootings.
Our main character lashed out at others every other page for no reason, which became increasingly annoying as it kept adding more to the plot which wasn't resolved, the character drama felt forced in places and the story wasn't paced well. We know how events went through twitter notifications that the characters were reading, but using this and not having them react to some of the ones that seemed more important than the petty drama side plots can come across as infuriating. The story could have worked as this is a controversial topic that people may want to read about, I just don't think that this was the right approach.
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This book is different, and that's a good thing. The writing is so good that you feel you are in the action, and the book is really about all the things that can come out in a life changing situation like a school shooting. This is not a huge masterpiece, but the story makes you think, and that's also a good thing.
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This one hits hard. A story like this should be an eye opener. It should be both devastatingly heartbreaking and heart warming. A story of loss, sacrifice, of bravery and uniting as one. Of terror and growth and of overcoming tragedy. Such a gut-wrenching, serious and real issue, that hits so close to heart. If written well and handled with respect, a book with this sort of premise could turn into a beautifully comprised tribute. I am disappointed and disheartened by this book.
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This is a short book for Teens and YAs that focuses on the effects of a school shooting. The book is narrated by one of the teenagers stuck in her homeroom with several of her classmates. They lock the doors and hide under their desks as the active shooter is close by. There are some injuries among the classmates and the teacher;  Ginny and one her classmates Kayla take on a leadership role helping to keep others quiet, attend to the needs of their classmates and make decisions when they need to be made. The two weren't friends before this and see themselves in different circles but going through the tragedy together they start to build a friendship. This is definitely an important topic to cover as more and more school shootings seem to be taking place and everyone needs to be aware. This was a story of unlikely people coming together to help each other through the day. It was a quick read and I would have liked to learned more about the main characters; but the book is enough to get the message across. Thank you to Netgalley and Common Deer Press for a copy in exchange for an honest review.
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This novella was a chilling and emotional roller coaster. In the span of a day, the lives of everyone at Southwestern High School changed forever and Cate Carlyle focuses specifically on Miss Jones' class. I think that this novella really highlights the trauma that hits each student, especially with Ginny already living with so much tragedy in her life. It highlights the importance of gun control because no adolescent should have to face a preventable situation like this.
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I don't know why I clicked 'read now' when I saw this book on NetGalley but I'm glad I did. This book deals with a difficult topic but at the same time, is a quick read meant to get the reader thinking. All that being said, I did have a few issues with how the story was presented.
First off, they are in an active shooter lockdown and the students are under their desks IN FRONT OF THE DOOR. Now, if you are not currently in school you won't understand, but that is the first 'no' that you are taught for the drills.
This novel was full of moments where the characters learned that appearances are not everything. During the shooting, Ginny discovers a lot about her strengths and weaknesses and her classmates.
Rating: 4 Stars
Content: 1 Star for a variety of reasons including language and violence
*I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own and a positive review was not required.
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I had a really rough time with this book. I understand what the author was trying to do, but the execution fell a little short. This book uses the setting of a lock-in during a school shooting as the catalyst for the main character's self-evaluation and growth. She realizes that all the kids she hates are real people and not just the stereotypes she has applied to them. There's something to be said for this trope, since detentions, etc. have been used for this purpose for a while, but this seems to be a little more in poor taste. All the character development feels forced and rushed, and the teenagers spoke the way adults think teenagers talk. 
I know that teens are a hard group to write, but I feel this could have been more polished.
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I finished this book in one night.  I could not put it down.  I have to do a bit of a disclaimer because when I was in 8th grade - there was a school shooting in the junior high I was in.  I tend to stay away from books with that theme but this one pulled me in and it probably scared me a little bit more than any other book because of my bias.  Would definitely recommend.
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I am lucky enough to live in a country where I don’t have to worry to much about gun violence and school shootings, as Guns are illegal. This meant that I grew up where I didn’t have to worry about going to school and worrying about the what ifs and practicing Lock Down drills. But that doesn’t stop me from now hearing about School Shootings in the news constantly and worrying about family who are going through school now, and what could possibly happen to them.

When I read this book, it did make me think. It was heavily emotional in parts, as it is told from one of the teenagers perspectives, one who is trapped in the school during the time of the school shooting. It does a good job at exploring how every person will react differently and how you don’t know how you’re going to react until you’re in that situation. Even the person who is perceived as being the strongest, may fall apart and crumble, whereas the quietest or weakest may rise. That you shouldn’t judge people!

This book also highlights a great use of technology. How it can be a great distraction in the most difficult of times and how it can help you to connect to people. How twitter can be helpful and keep you updated with news and information, but also help you to stay in touch with family at the most difficult times.

3.5 Stars
When it comes to writing a book with such a serious and sensitive topic, such as a School Shooting, you have to make sure that it’s done well. This book was written well and I would’ve loved for it to have been longer, so that it could’ve been explored a lot more. I couldn’t put this down and I didn’t want to because I wanted to make sure that the characters, the people, were going to be okay. Just like when these events happen, I was left with questions. Why did this happen? This didn’t get answered, but maybe that’s because it was emulating life. But I was left with questions when I was done reading the book, so I do wish it was longer.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the author of the book for the opportunity to read it, in exchange for an honest review. 

I was pleasantly surprised by this book. When I started reading, I was immensely surprised by how short it was, therefore I read it just in one morning. 
In my opinion, the story developed at a good pace. I especially liked the social media elements within each chapter, since social media are so prominent nowadays. It makes it easier to relate to the story.
Also, I liked the message in the book that you shouldn't stereotype other people and that you can perfectly work together. The story is kind of heart-breaking and endearing. 
In the comments I read a lot of criticism for not going further in depth about, for example, gun culture. I think that adding a bit more background information would have improved the story, however, it is still a book directed for teens and young adult. 
I liked the story very much, nontheless, it was too short. I cannot consider this as a real book, so I would give the advice to the author to give more details, enhance the story, broaden the story.
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