WEEK FOUR of the I Love Dark YA Blogfest...
November 23rd: Assignment is #YASAVES—Blog about how a dark YA book made an impact in your life.
BLURB and image from Goodreads: What if you had only one day to live? What would you do? Who would you kiss? And how far would you go to save your own life?
Samantha Kingston has it all: the world's most crush-worthy boyfriend, three amazing best friends, and first pick of everything at Thomas Jefferson High—from the best table in the cafeteria to the choicest parking spot. Friday, February 12, should be just another day in her charmed life.
Instead, it turns out to be her last.
Then she gets a second chance. Seven chances, in fact. Reliving her last day during one miraculous week, she will untangle the mystery surrounding her death—and discover the true value of everything she is in danger of losing.
Of all the YA books I've read, I think this one has the potential to change a life. When you are a senior in high school, it seems that your life will go on forever, that days are sometimes too long, and that people will always be around. If you are reading this blog and you're in high school, I can't convince you otherwise. I could say, "Cherish these people, be good to each other, enjoy your youth,"...yadda yadda yadda until my face turned blue, and I'm positive that it would make not a bit of difference. So, parents and teachers....you're wasting your time. This book told from the viewpoint of Samantha Kingston does what others can't do. It's a glimpse into life during high school that DOES change in a drastic way. Everyday. It's also a book that highlights a problem that has been around for ages -- bullying. I believe bullying is not a new phenomenon, but that we hear more about it with the availability of news.
I thought Lauren Oliver's insight into the teen psyche and what really goes on in high school is incomparable. Some readers who have critiqued the book say that they had a hard time with it. The main character Samantha is too harsh and they didn't like her. I completely disagree with those reviews. Samantha is very REAL. At the beginning of the book, you see what every other person sees in Samantha. You see what's superficial. As you read, you understand more about Samantha and her experiences in life that have molded her. Midway through the book, I began to love Samantha for her humor, her flaws, and her not-so-obvious goodness. I also love that her character grows. So, if you want to read a book where everything is black and white, find something else. The characters in Before I Fall are three-dimensional.
Before I Fall is a contemporary YA that made me laugh and cry. I listened to the audio version of this book while commuting daily to work. It's pretty embarrassing and slightly dangerous to find yourself blubbering on the freeway. It's also one of those books that you can't quit thinking about after you're finished. Would this book help one person examine him or herself and how little things make a difference in the treatment of others? I think it might. It might stop a young person from idly standing by when he/she could do something right. This book is more than entertainment. It has a great message. Read this book. You won't be sorry.