Saturday, December 10, 2016

I Know What You Did Last Summer and Killing Mr. Griffin

I purchased a set of 10 Lois Duncan books on eBay.  The books are from 2010.  I was not aware until after I received the books that I had purchased revised editions.  Lois Duncan revised the text of each book to include references to modern technology.  She also made some other minor changes, such as to clothing styles.

At first I was annoyed that the books are revised, but then I decided that I did not care. Ultimately, I greatly enjoyed reading the revised books.  I especially enjoyed that each book has an interview with Lois Duncan in the back after the end of the story.

In I Know What You Did Last Summer, four friends are in a vehicle that hits and kills a young boy.  The driver insists that the friends not report the accident.  One year later, the friends learn that someone knows what happened, when this person begins harassing them.

I noticed a curious mixture of cultural references in this book.  Lois Duncan inserted modern references to webcasts and the Iraq War.  However, one girl works at the Wards department store, and that should have been changed.  Oops.  Wards no longer exists.

I enjoyed this book.

In Killing Mr. Griffin, some of Mr. Griffin's students decide to scare him to get payback for him being a difficult teacher.  Unexpectedly, Mr. Griffin dies, and the students cover up the crime.

While I enjoyed the book, I couldn't relate to the characters at all.  I also found the premise to be too disturbing to enjoy.  I am a teacher, and one of my former students is in prison for a sadistic murder.  It's sobering to think that someone I knew and interacted with on a daily basis later committed murdered somebody.

Furthermore, violence in schools against students and teachers has worsened in the last 20 years.  This book was published back back before school shootings became common. Reading this book was not escapism.  It was a bit of a downer.

I did overall enjoy the book, but I doubt I would ever read it again.

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