Press Releases

Susan Klebold Memoir to be Published by Crown

For the first time, Susan Klebold, mother of Columbine shooter Dylan Klebold, will share her story in a memoir to be published by Crown

(September 23, 2014 – New York, NY): On April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold walked into Columbine High School. Over the course of minutes, they would kill twelve students and a teacher and wound twenty-four others before taking their own lives. For the last fifteen years, Susan Klebold, Dylan’s mother, has lived with the indescribable grief and shame of that day, trying to come to terms with the incomprehensible. How could her child, the promising young man she had loved and raised for seventeen years, be responsible for such horror? And how, as his mother, had she not seen it? What, if anything, should she have done differently?

It is that question that Klebold has grappled with every day since the Columbine tragedy, and she has spent the past fifteen years in tireless pursuit of the answer. While she has previously declined to publicly share her experiences, the devastating events at Newtown, UCSB, and most recently at Seattle Pacific University and Reynolds High School in Oregon have shown that the need for insight has never been more urgent. It has not been an easy decision for Sue Klebold to come forward after so many years of silence. But she has seen firsthand that sharing her story can help other parents—and she therefore feels a deep responsibility to broaden the circle of those who know it. If the lessons and insights she has gained in the terrible crucible of Columbine can help others, then she feels she has a moral imperative to share them. Knowing there is nothing she can ever do to atone for what Dylan did, she has dedicated her life to trying to prevent anyone from having to endure such suffering ever again.

Roger Scholl, Vice President & Executive Editor, acquired world rights from Laurie Bernstein of Side by Side Literary Productions, Inc., and will edit the book. The UK and Commonwealth edition will be published by WH Allen, an imprint of Ebury/Penguin Random House UK. A simultaneous publication date has not been announced.

With unflinching honesty, Klebold will share her story in this yet-to-be titled book in hopes of shining a light on one of the most pressing issues of our time. She will invite readers into the very private struggle of the last fifteen years as she and her family have tried to understand the events of that terrible day and the role they ultimately played in it. Klebold has shielded herself from nothing, exhaustively exploring the depths of her memories, interviewing family members and friends, combing through her journals, and meeting with countless mental health experts in an attempt to understand how her child could have hurt so many—without her ever recognizing anything was wrong. Klebold will never know if she could have prevented the events of Columbine, but her hope is that the insights she has gleaned from her experiences can help other families see the signs when their children need help. Although at times paralyzed by her grief and remorse, for close to a decade Sue Klebold has become a passionate and vocal advocate working tirelessly to advance mental health awareness and intervention. Author profits from the book will be donated to research and to charitable foundations focusing on mental health issues.

Crown Publishers is an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a Penguin Random House Company. Penguin Random House (http://global.penguinrandomhouse.com/) is the world’s most global trade book publisher. It was formed on July 1, 2013, upon the completion of an agreement between Bertelsmann and Pearson to merge their respective trade publishing companies, Random House and Penguin, with the parent companies owning 53% and 47%, respectively. Penguin Random House comprises the adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital trade book publishing businesses of Penguin and Random House in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa, and Penguin’s trade publishing activity in Asia and Brazil; DK worldwide; and Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial’s Spanish-language companies in Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, and Chile. Penguin Random House employs more than 10,000 people globally across almost 250 editorially and creatively independent imprints and publishing houses that collectively publish more than 15,000 new titles annually. Its publishing lists include more than 70 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.


The Crown Publishing Group