Lauren Oliver's before i fall tells of the incredible journey of Samantha Kingston as she experiences her last day alive (literally), over and over. Sam learns a little more about herself, her friends, her family, and others around her each day, and she also learns to appreciate the little details that most people miss on the course of their own lives -- things that go unnoticed because no one ever knows when it will all fall away.
Sam and her three best friends, Lindsay, Ally, and Elody, are the most popular girls at school. They date the cutest boys, they get away with everything, and everyone knows who they are. Their biggest worry on Cupid Day is how many roses they'll receive during school, and hopefully it's more than last year's count. But when Lindsay is driving too fast after leaving a party and swerves off the road the night of February 12, all is lost and Sam plunges into darkness. Until she wakes up the next morning to her alarm clock and to her little sister, Izzy, who is relaying Mom's message to hurry up and get ready for school . . . and the display on her phone says "February 12." Cupid Day. Again.
The incredible journey of finding yourself, experiencing love, and giving compassion is all for the sake of that bright light that can shine onto darkness, grief, and shame. Samantha finds peace, and in turn offers a second chance to those who deserve one. This excellently written story is recommended to all readers, and will especially appeal to those who are hurting with secrets, shame, or loneliness. It's never too late to feel the joy hidden among the smallest things.
Call number: YA OLIVER (Teen Room)
Reviewed by kate the librarian.
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