Saturday, January 22, 2011

Book #5: Before I Fall

I found Lauren Oliver's Before I Fall on an NPR best teen books of 2010 list a few weeks ago. The premise sounding interesting: a high school girl dies in a car crash, only to wake up again the next morning to find she has six chances to relive her last day. What an interesting premise for exploring what is really important--if you were Samantha Kingston, would you use your last day to get into trouble without the threat of consequences; would you ditch school and spend time with your family; would you try to live a last normal day; would you try to make a difference?

Throughout all of Before I Fall, the idea that people are important come across strongly--which isn't always the case in YA fiction. I was so interested in seeing the changes the protagonist makes on each of her last days, in discovering how her priorities shift. And, more than anything, I wanted to see Sam's last day. Sure, you know the basic fact of how the novel ends. But it's the peripheral details and the human interactions that are more important. Oliver's style enriches such a thoughtful, well-plotted story.

I'd recommend this book for readers who enjoy YA realistic fiction (no vampires!), the strong characterization and interactions of the women's lives and relationships genre, or can't-put-it-down-until-I-know-what-happens quick reads.

1 comment:

  1. I'm loving these book reviews, Amy. I'm definitely going to look into this one. It sounds great! :) Thank you!