BEFORE I FALL.

bookcover_home_before_i_fall

★★★★

Sweet book with a lovely message. Samantha Kingston dies in a car accident on February 12th, and instead of going on to heaven/hell/whatever comes next, she keeps reliving the same day over and over, through the course of one very weird week. Each day she struggles to figure out what exactly caused her death, and what she can do to fix it and save herself.

Samantha starts out as your typical Mean Girls popular girl: bitchy friends, hot but dumb boyfriend, walking through the halls of her high school in Queen Bee royalty. But as she is forced to keep reliving the same day over and over again, she begins to realize the effect her seemingly irrelevant actions have on others, and how deeply they can effect people around her in the most unexpected of ways. In some ways, the majority of the book is a study on how our lives are defined by the minute choices we never even think twice about.

Samantha’s character development is really well-done. It didn’t ever feel forced, and it easily could have. I HATED her best friend, Lindsey, who never really “gets what she deserves”, but I think the ending of the book is set up in a way that indicates that she soon may be going through a transformation of sorts. Samantha’s developing relationship with Kent is pretty beautiful.

I was really pleasantly surprised by Lauren Oliver’s writing. I honestly wasn’t expecting much from a mean-girls YA with a truly terrible cover. But Oliver has a talent for creating beautiful images and multidimensional characters, and I am definitely planning on reading her dystopian trilogy when I have the chance.

I listened to the audio version of the book, which is also really nicely done. It’s narrated by Sarah Drew, and I spent the first two hours trying to figure out how I knew her voice until I finally Googled her and found out she’s on Grey’s Anatomy now. Small world.

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