Beyond the Bullet – Book Review

In our ongoing search to find books that may be helpful to victims and survivors in their journey, we have come across many. Some have been on our shelves for years, the tried and true, and others are new and cutting edge. Today, I want to share with you a tried and true book. It is a book that I have reread many times. Not an easy read by any means but truly an impactful one.

In 1999, Heidi Yewman was profoundly affected by the killings at Columbine High School. In the ensuing years she became more involved in the anti-gun violence movement. She also had a yearning to learn about the people whose lives had been forever changed by gun violence.

In her book, Beyond the Bullet, Heidi has introduced us to the voices of those who have been intimately affected by gun violence and to share with all of us the pain, anger and mostly the emotional roller coaster ride of emotions. The stories are true, told by those who hold the pain so closely. They are told in short narratives, the author using each person’s words as they share their personal story.

For the many victim/survivors whose pain we have encountered and the desire they hold to know if what they are feeling is “typical”, this book could be for you. Hearing others journey, whether it be recent or years down the road, is a request we often hear. It may help to hear that you are not alone, “crazy”, depressed, and needing to get on with your life from those who have traveled a journey that may be similar to yours.

The author, Heidi Yewman, has been gracious in donating the sale of this book to our organization, Victim Support Services, formerly known as Families & Friends of Violent Crime Victims.

We will periodically do book reviews however if you would ever like a suggestion for a tried and True or newer book please do not hesitate to contact us.

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"With the help of VSS, you are empowered and encouraged to fight back and be pro-active. Then your conscience can be more at peace because you know you have taken some action to protest crimes inflicted on your loved one. It is sometimes your only consolation."

“The one takeaway for me in working with VSS is that it is a necessary organization. I know they are funded by grants and fundraisers but it’s something we need to make sure as a community that they have the funding needed because what they do for people in need doesn’t happen anywhere else. This is the only place that this happens and VSS helps with so many things.”

David Rose

Anchor, Q13 News and Host, Washington’s Most Wanted

“VSS is there when the unthinkable happens.  When a police officer knocks on your door and gives you tragic news, VSS helps navigate the court system, which can be very confusing. VSS is compassion, caring, and commitment. Commitment to once justice is done that victims and their families can move forward with their lives.”

Jennifer Gregerson

Mayor, City of Mukilteo

“VSS has been our partner in recovery and healing and a key part in what makes Mukilteo Strong. VSS has been a trusted advocate for the victims that have suffered so much in the community.  I’m so grateful to VSS as our partner in strength.”

Jon Nehring

Mayor, City of Marysville

“VSS is there for people in their darkest hour. At a time when they need an advocate and friend, VSS steps in to fill that gap and help them begin their journey back to some sense of normalcy.” 

Myrle Carner

Crime Stoppers of Puget Sound

“This thing about closure. There is never really closure in a victim’s life but VSS helps individuals to get closer to that and that’s critical because the cops and the judicial system just move on to another case because they don’t have time. Victims live with this trauma forever so VSS is with them for as long as they need the services. VSS takes the time, more importantly, they really care."

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