by Walter Dean Myers


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780064472906
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 03/29/2005
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 363,740
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 7.12(h) x 0.51(d)
Lexile: 690L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Walter Dean Myers was the New York Times bestselling author of Monster, the winner of the first Michael L. Printz Award; a former National Ambassador for Young People's Literature; and an inaugural NYC Literary Honoree. Myers received every single major award in the field of children's literature. He was the author of two Newbery Honor Books and six Coretta Scott King Awardees. He was the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults, a three-time National Book Award Finalist, as well as the first-ever recipient of the Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Read an Excerpt


Harrison County School Safety Committee
Threat Analysis Report

Submitted by:

Dr. Jonathan Margolies
Superintendent, Harrison County Board of Education

Dr. Richard Ewings
Senior County Psychologist

Special Agent Victoria Lash
F.B.I. Threat Assessment Analyst

Dr. Franklyn Bonner
Spectrum Group

Sheriff William Beach Mosley
Harrison County Criminal Bureau

Mission Statement

The Harrison County School Safety Committee, headed by Dr. Jonathan Margolies, is to investigate public school safety using interviews and all available records, with particular emphasis on the tragic events of last April; and to analyze and assess all pos-sible threats and dangers within the County's school community; and to report to the Governor of this State any findings consistent with imminent or possible threats to:

  • Any student or group of students
  • Any educator or administrator
  • Any other person
  • Any structure or building

It is understood by the members of the Safety Committee that the generated report will not carry a prima facie legal obligation but that it might be used in some legal capacity, and that all inter-viewees must be informed of their Miranda rights.

Madison High School Incident Analysis Report I -- Interview with Cameron Porter
Submitted by Dr. Richard Ewings,
Senior County Psychologist

Cameron Porter is a seventeen-year-old African American youth who attended Madison High School in HarrisonCounty. His grades ran in the high eighties and there is no indication, in his school records, of difficulty in social adjustment. He lives in a two-parent household and is the only child. The parental income is quite high, and there is no indication of deprivation.

Cameron has been advised that the interviews will not be privileged and that they can be subpoenaed for any subsequent legal action, but that the primary aim of the interviews is for analytical purposes. He has agreed to be interviewed in an effort to cooperate with the Analysis team and has signed a waiver to that effect.

He appeared at my office punctually, accompanied by his mother, who then left for another appointment. Cameron is a good-looking young man, neatly dressed, of medium to dark complexion. He seems reasonably comfortable and no more nervous than would be expected under the circumstances. A letter informing Cameron of his Miranda rights was drafted, signed by him, and put on file.

The initial taped interview began at 10:30 on the morning of October 24. This was six months after the incident at the high school.

Notes to transcriber:

  • Please return all tapes to my office as soon as possible.
  • Please indicate significant pauses or other voicings in the unedited draft of this report.

Dr. Richard Ewings

Richard Ewings: Good morning.

Cameron Porter: Good morning.

RE: Do you mind if I call you Cameron?

CP: Fine.

RE: Cameron, can we begin by you telling me something about yourself? Where do you live? Who do you live with? That sort of thing?

CP: Sure. I live over on Jewett Avenue. I live with my mom, Elizabeth, and my father.

RE: Can you give me your father's name and tell me what sort of work your parents do?

CP: My father's name is Norman. He does quality control for Dyna-Rod Industries. They manufacture heavy equipment, and they lease it to building contractors. What he does is travel around and check out how the leasing end of their business works. My mother works for an office-supply company.

RE: What would heavy equipment consist of?

CP: Cranes, derricks, specialized vehicles.

RE: How would you describe how you get along with your parents?

CP: Okay. Just normal I guess.

RE: Do you go out with them much? Are there family conversations, say, around the dinner table?

CP: My father travels a lot. He's away about a week and a half every month. Maybe more, I don't know. We sort of -- I wouldn't say that we talk a lot. I wouldn't say that we don't talk a lot, either. We go out -- we used to go out to eat once a month. Arturo's. You know where that is?

RE: About a mile off 95, isn't it?

CP: Down from the mall.

RE: Right. That's a nice place. Good Italian food. Do you enjoy eating there?

CP: It's okay. No big deal. They like it.

RE: What kinds of things do you talk about at Arturo's? Actually, what kinds of things do you enjoy talking about with your parents?

CP: I guess we don't really talk that much. When we do talk -- usually it's about something -- maybe about their jobs or something. They talk about their jobs a lot. They're trying to -- they have these goals they work on. You know, what they want to accomplish every year, that sort of thing.

RE: What do you think of their goals?

CP: Their goals? They're okay. They have things they want to do. Financial security -- that sort of thing. They're, like, doing the right things.

RE: When you say they're doing the right things, do you mean that you think they're doing the right things?

CP: Yeah. Yes, I guess so.

RE: How would you describe your relationship with your parents? Can you tell me how you think you get along with them, perhaps if there were different things you would have liked to have done with them than you were doing?

CP: They asked me that at the county office.

RE: And what did you say?

Shooter. Copyright © by Walter Myers. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Reading Group Guide

By Walter Dean Myers

About the Book:

Seventeen-year-old Cameron Porter is interviewed by the president of the County Board of Education, a county psychologist, an FBI Threat Assessment analyst, a Threat Assessment specialist, and the county sheriff as to his involvement in a shooting in which a student was killed and others were injured. Cameron, a shy, intelligent African American young man, was with the sniper, Len, an angry, slightly built Anglo teen. The book is comprised of Cameron's interview transcripts and Len's handwritten journal entries leading up to the shooting. Cameron and Len clearly have different ways of responding to the bullying at school and to stress at home. Cameron's wealthy, career-driven father has high expectations and pushes Cameron to become more aggressive. Len's abusive father takes out his problems at work on his family. In response, Cameron becomes even quieter, and Len gets even angrier. Len fights back, taking Cameron along for the ride, starting out by defacing a church and target practicing in the woods. Then he lures Cameron and their friend, Carla, to the high school with paint cans in hand. But they soon discover that Len is armed with guns rather than brushes. This isn't going to be a graffiti spree; it's going to be a shooting spree.

Awards for Walter Dean Myers's work:

Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults ALA Award for outstanding contribution to young adult literature See back page for awards listed by title.

Discussion Questions:

  1. The psychologist asks Cameron what type of music he listens to, and Cameron says he isn't "into any Fourth Reich number" (p. 11). Do you think that the music people listen to affects how others react to them?
  2. At the shooting range, there is a target with Martin Luther King Jr. holding a gun, which immediately gets shot down. Upset, Cameron tells his father about it and is told to stay focused and not "go off on some civil-rights kick" (p. 20). How would you have responded to the situation at the range and/or with Cameron's father?
  3. After vandalizing the church, Len goes to the parish house and reports that he has "heard noises from the church, that maybe one of the prophets was calling out for help" (p. 28). Later, when the police call to ask what he has heard, Len gives himself up. Does Len want to get caught?
  4. Cameron refers to the jocks, their girlfriends, and the teachers as having power. For example, the guy behind you, who keeps kicking your chair but makes you afraid to do anything about it, has power over you (p. 34). Do you agree with Cameron's assessment of the power holders in a typical high school?
  5. Len is self-conscious about his body. Wearing black emphasizes his thinness, but he does it to show that he has "gone dark" and does not want to get along with people (p. 45). Is his behavior a self-defense mechanism? Is he declaring himself an outsider before anyone else can? Have you ever done something similar?
  6. While being interviewed by the FBI agent, Cameron refers to the shooting as "the incident." The incredulous agent asks, "You're referring to murder as an 'incident' " (p. 58)? Why do people replace harsh terms such as "murder" and "dead" with neutral terms such as "incident" and "passed away"?
  7. Carla is described as having streaks of blue in her hair and ears pierced in several spots, and wearing heavy makeup and multicolored lipstick. Do you agree with the interviewer that "her physical presentation is one of 'rebellion' " (p. 88)?
  8. In history class the students write essays imagining themselves as a historical figure. Len writes in his journal that he is "Quasimodo turned inside out with my lips too red and legs too short and my hump slung across my back" (p. 157). Why does Len pick Quasimodo? Whom would you pick for Cameron and Carla?
  9. Len writes that he "got into it with Drab Brad, the beastie buoy in the sea of strife" (p. 158). Are there other examples of Len's sarcastic wordplay in his journal?
  10. Frustrated with his father's aggression toward him, Cameron agrees to join Len in vandalizing the school. Len is ecstatic but still worried. He writes, "Can I trust them to go all the way? Can I take them?" (p. 222) To whom does he refer? Where does Len want to take them?

About the Author

Walter Dean Myers is the author of over seventy books for young people. During his writing career of over thirty years, he has received virtually every accolade his profession offers, including the Michael L. Printz Award for Monster, a Newbery Honor for Scorpions, numerous Coretta Scott King citations, and the American Library Association's Margaret A. Edwards Award for his lifetime contribution to the field of children's literature.

Born in West Virginia and raised by foster parents in Harlem, New York, where many of his books are set, Mr. Myers now lives with his family in Jersey City, New Jersey. Walter Dean Myers says of his work, "Ultimately, what I want to do with my writing is to make connections -- to touch the lives of my characters and, through them, those of my readers."

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Shooter 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 58 reviews.
mynameischucknorris More than 1 year ago
I am 16 years old and I'm a sophomore at Holt. I recently finished reading Shooter by Walter Dean Myers. I read this book as a free reading book for English class, and a few of my other friends in the class read the book also. I chose to read Shooter because the cover of the book got my attention because it had a bullet hole on it and also because I've read a few other Walter Dean Myers books before and they were good overall. In the book, Cameron, the main character, is friends with Len and Carla. The three of them are basically outcasts and don't really fit in with many other people. They like shooting guns for fun. It's exciting to them. They all go to this range sometimes and shoot together. Len and Cameron get pushed around at school a lot. Len is the type of guy that doesn't take crap from people, but Cameron just lets things go on and doesn't do anything. When the three of them all encounter problems in their life at home and at school, they rely on each other for support. Len becomes very radical in his efforts to stop violence in the world and he starts acting very dark. Throughout the book, Cameron and Carla are interviewed about their lives and how they got caught up in more problems with Len. As the book goes on, things really start heating up and things go haywire. Events take place that are detrimental to the three of their lives. A key theme in the book is friendship because when things in Cameron, Len, and Carla's lives go wrong, they turn to their friends. I guess this book is a good in bringing up who your real friends are. If you enjoy reading other Walter Dean Myers books, you will enjoy reading Shooter because it will keep you guessing what happens next and make you keep turning the pages. Overall, I would rate this book a 3 out of 5 starts. It's got a very good plot, but after a while the book gets a little old because the majority of the book is talking and interviews of what already took place. Even though they book is a little boring at parts, it was still a great book that anyone can enjoy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was very weird in a way because you got to go into the mind of the murderer himself. Just knowing what was going threw his head makes you shiver in your seat. I would recommend this book. Very interesting.
Guest More than 1 year ago
'Shooter' is an amazing book. The interviews really gave me an idea about what was going on in their head. Len is a strange character, but I'm sure many teenagers can relate to him in some sort of way. I really liked how Meyers let you know about almost every little detail, and made it seem like you were in the school with the kids that day. The book overwhelmed me with emotion, and I felt the sorrow and hurt the friends and family all felt after the incident.
69Rocks More than 1 year ago
I am a sophomore at Holt High School and I read the book Shooter as a free-read in my English class. This book was recommended to me by my school librarian as she said I was likely to enjoy it, and I most definitely did. Shooter was written by Walter Dean Myers. Myers tells the story of seventeen year-old Cameron Porter and his interactions with his best friends Leonard Gray and Carla Evans. The book consists of various interviews between Cameron and Carla and multiple detectives, doctors, and writers. In fact, each chapter of the book is a different interview. During these interviews, the investigators are trying to figure out what caused Leonard to commit a horrible crime. They find out a plethora of facts including his father owning a gun club, him going "black" (going black was the term given in the book for dressing in all black clothes and wearing dark make-up), and Leonard's isolation from the "real" of life. It is these factors that eventually drive Leonard to threatening to bring a gun to school and shooting his peers. It was up to Cameron and Carla to do something or to just sit by and let it happen. They were forced to decide between being good friends and doing what is right. The book Shooter provokes a variety of themes and questions to the reader. The main theme is the split between friendship and doing what is right. Other themes include isolation from "realness," friendship, and responsibilities. The book also brings up some real-life questions while reading. At various points throughout the book I would find myself asking, "What would I have done if I were Cameron, and I had to decide whether or not to betray my best friend?" It is interesting to put yourself into the plot and see what you would have done. Overall, I would give Walter Dean Myers' Shooter a 4 out of 5. The reason why it's not quite a 5 is because the entire plot is told in past tense so at times it is difficult to understand. Also, some of the interviews seem to be too lengthy and seem to drag on. It is for that reason that I would recommend this book to people who are in either high school or college. It is a somewhat challenging read if you can't stand long periods of reading so it would not be a good read for younger students. I would also recommend it to people who enjoy war novels or action books. This book reminds me of Fallen Angels, which was also written by Myers, so if you enjoyed that book, pick up Shooter. So, if you can get over the fact that the book takes a lot of concentration and long periods of reading to understand the plot, then start reading Shooter today; I would highly recommend this book for any intermediate to high level reader.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Cameron Goode, Timber Creek High School, Class of 2008 This dynamic story is of Cameron Porter, and his analyzed character after the suicide/mass homicide committed by his best friend. This story leaps onward into the mind of a teenager, who orchestrated a school shooting, and into the mentality of his best friend, who as bloodcurdling as it may be has an identical thought process. This is a riveting book I recommend for anybody over the age of 16 or anybody who would be able to grasp the complexities, or the significance of the story¿s conclusion. This is a must read for anybody interested in the field of psychology, or anybody who is intrigued by the human mind.
TigerLMS on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Cameron, Carla, and Leonard (Len) all attend Madison High School. Investigators want to know what kind of relationship the three friends had-- and who was really behind the deadly school shootings on April 22. The story is told through a series of interviews with Carla and Cameron, and then finally through Len's journal. This novel explores aspects of how well friends really know each other, why people hang on to friends in the face of obvious or even disturbing differences, and touches on prejudice in several forms. Myers writes in his usual crisp, gripping way, and the story unfolds well. Perhaps the most disturbing part of the book is at the end, when Myers writes as Len in a series of journal entries. I'll recommend this to high schoolers looking for an edgy, suspenseful read that isn't very long (this is 223 pages, mostly in dialogue format--- quick readers can finish in a couple hours).
psingh12 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Shooter is a suspenseful book written by Walter Dean Myers. For those who have read his previous books like Hoops or Monster, you know you will be hooked on this one too. This book is about three friends; Leonard (Leo) Gray, Cameron Peter, and Carla Evans. They are like outsiders in school and in daily life. Cameron and Carla get investigated because they were witnesses of a murder. Leo is always looking for revenge.Leo and Cameron are good friends, and Carla is Leo¿s girlfriend. Leo is crazy about guns; they all go to shooting ranges. Leo is always getting into a mess or fights; getting arrested and bailed. Leo has an enemy list, and everytime someone does something he tells them, ¿I¿m going to put you on my enemy list.¿ Leo is always making his friends do wrong things with him, if they don¿t, he calls them traitors. Cameron wants to get through with school even with these differences because Leo and Cameron were good friends.A murder happens; you may know who did it, but this book keeps you flipping pages to find out WHY it happened. Cameron and Carla get investigated a lot by various people. It is a great book for someone who wants a career with law. Anyways, they get investigated so the detectives and police can know why it all happened. In each interview they always leave one incident out that makes you read further on. The end is pretty shocking. Want to know if your guesses are right? You¿ll have to read the book now won¿t you?Shooter can be related it many people¿s lives. It shows how people deal with certain situations. Such situations can be like being picked on as outsiders, or even thinking about getting revenge. You should think twice before doing such things, and this book shows it!
d_jones on LibraryThing 11 months ago
School violence is the subject of this high interest, lo-reading level book by the author of "Monster", Walter Dean Myers. The account of a school shooting is told by Cameron Porter, a loner and friend of the shooter, through a series of interviews, articles, and the diary of the shooter. The unraveling of events leading to the violence is slow moving with the interviews at the start through the middle of the story. It relys on the very structured questions of the interviewers and repetitive responses of Cameron. The story could be used in the classroom to discuss bullying and the warning signs leading to violence.
ewyatt on LibraryThing 11 months ago
Shooter includes a series of interviews, journals, and various reports that are gathered after a school shooting has happened. A heavy and interesting read that leaves you wondering if there was anything that could have been done to help Len before he decided to bring his guns to school.
librarymeg on LibraryThing 11 months ago
Myers tells the story of a school shooting through interviews, newspaper articles, police reports and a diary. This unusual method of storytelling allows the reader to question what might have actually happened, and eliminates the certainty that would have most likely resulted with a traditional narrative. All the complexity of teenage life is intact, where important decisions seem to just happen rather than being made, and how other people see you is as important as who you are. Myers doesn't offer any answers or solutions which makes for a somewhat unsatisfying read, but let's face it, it's how things really are.
mattsya on LibraryThing 11 months ago
As an example of non-traditional narrative, Myers story of a school shooting shines. He cleverly builds suspense through police transcripts and newspaper clippings., slowly building a complete story with great characters. He also creates an entirely non-cliched and stereotypical African American character, and deals very honestly with issues of racism.
cardenas More than 1 year ago
Shooter, by Walter dean Myers is a story about a big tragedy. This book is told in 1st person point of view which is in Cameron’s point of view the protagonist is an African American named Cameron porter. Cameron felt like he didn’t belong to any group at school, but feels like he actually belongs when another African American named Leonard became his best friend. Until Leonard starts making bad decisions and their relationship starts to change. Cameron remembers that Len is his best friend so he helps him with all the trouble that Len gets into, just so he won’t lose his friendship with Len. One of the themes in Shooter is figuring out what is the difference between what is right and what is not. Cameron never had time to talk with his parents, but once Len came along he actually felt like he belonged in a group not like before, “I didn’t hang out with a lot of different people, well I didn’t hang out with anyone.” (19) At the beginning of the beginning of the book Cameron played basketball he did like it but then he just did it to please his dad (Norman) so his dad could be proud of him and think he actually had a purpose in the world. And by Len being there for him it made Cameron feel special and like he had someone to be and talk with. Compared to another book, Emako blue, has that one friend that makes her feel special and like she’s not alone. In emako blue, emako had a best friend named Monterey and Monterey believed in Emako, and also like Cameron Len believed in Cameron but while having a different relationship as friends. Overall this is a fascinating story of how a boy see’s the mistake that had been happening, and who really cared for him. For me this story receives an 8 out of 10 stars, this is a good book but I feel like this should be at an older age level, because even for me this book was confusing. But overall this book is interesting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
While this book had a powerful plot, I wish it was less after and more before and during.It felt so much like a story going around the halls instead of the thoughts from the characters that led to the incident. Len's diary really didn't do anything for me in that aspect because it was more wat was happening than what he was thunking about it. I wish part of it had been written in Cam's perspective- maybe a week before then during the shooting, then theinterviews and everything and then a more detailed diary. It was a quick and easy read, and it captured me in a way I haven't known of until now, but I found I wasn't emotionally invested in the plot or characters. It is hard for me to get emotionally invested anyways, but that is one way I judge a book: whether it was good enough to put me in a state of limerence with it. Unfortunately, this wasn't fo me, but given it's strange way of writing and the ineffability of my enrapturement, I am giving it 3.5 stars. If you are looking for a quick read with an interesting enough plot, read it. I'd say 12 and up. Enjoy it more than I did. :) -Casey
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought the book was really interesting but i thought it would have been better if it was told through either of the boys perspetive rather it being a whole bunch of people telling their side
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read the description, but then some one said it was MURDER. I love murder mysterys, but this iss confusing. And no, i cant just get the book. Five stars i guess.
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