With this stunning debut novel, New York Times bestselling author Lauren Oliver emerged as one of today’s foremost authors of young adult fiction. Like Jay Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why and Gayle Forman’s If I Stay, Before I Fall raises thought-provoking questions about love, death, and how one person’s life can affect so many others.
For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—”Cupid Day”—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night.
However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she ever imagined.
I’ll be honest, I had never heard of this book until I saw the preview for the movie. The concept definitely intrigued me. I decided to listen to it on audiobook, and wow, just wow. This story was unexpectedly heart wrenching and real, so so real.
The story centers around the life and death of Samantha Kingston who has climbed her way to the top of the popularity tower and happens to be friends with the top dogs. She’s essentially a bitch and so are her friends. That becomes apparent immediately, however, when she wakes up in the morning after experiencing her death to find that the day she lived yesterday is on repeat, she soon discovers she is stuck in a loop unless she can do something to change her path and the situation around her.
It was so incredibly interesting to see Oliver create the same day in multiple different unique ways. I kept thinking throughout, how is she going to change it this time, how is she going to give this story a happy ending? Well folks, don’t expect a happy ending, but do expect an ending that makes sense and will certainly give you chills. Though I definitely disliked Sam’s character in the beginning, I began to appreciate her and her character evolution as her repeated days continued. She grew so much and developed into a wonderful female lead. And though I so wish the story had ended differently, I understand why it concluded the way it did. And even though it kills me inside, I am content in a certain way with the way things played out.
The message in Before I Fall is absolutely beautiful and makes you appreciate life and humanity. It teaches you to take in every small wonderful detail of your existence, because even the most insignificant aspects of life have a role to play, a role that could be so much more impactful then you ever realized.
I would definitely recommend you read Before I Fall if only to feel all the emotion that this story has to bring and appreciate it’s meaning. I can only hope that the movie brings that emotion to life just as well as the book.