Thursday, May 16, 2013

Book Review: Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

What if you only had 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: looks, popularity, the perfect boyfriend. Friday, February 12, should be just another day in her charmed life. Instead, it turns out to be her last.

The catch: Samantha still wakes up the next morning. Living the last day of her life seven times 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.

Rating Scale (1-10): 10!

My Review: Okay, just give me a moment so I can get control of my emotions! This book got me right in the feels! Why do all of Lauren's book just make me cry and cry and CRY?! She is one amazing, talented author if she makes me feel all these emotions every time I read one of her books. Her writing is so beautiful and amazing and I just love every single word. The sentences are so captivating and flow off the page so easily and just makes you look up to the sky and go, "Wow."

So here is some information about Lauren Oliver from her website: I was born in Queens and raised in Westchester, New York, in a small town very similar to the one depicted in Before I Fall. My parents are both literature professors, and from a very early age, my sister and I were encouraged to make up stories, draw, paint, dance around in costumes, and essentially spend much of our time living imaginatively. Our house was old and full of art and towers and towers of books, and that’s still the kind of house I like best.

I started writing as a way of extending my love of reading; when I read a book I loved, I would continue to write sequels for it (I was inadvertently a fan fic writer, before “fan fiction” was even a term!). Later on, I began working on my own stories, and keeping company with a lot of imaginary friends.

I pursued literature and philosophy at the University of Chicago, and then moved back to New York to attend NYU’s MFA program in creative writing. I simultaneously began working at Penguin Books, in a young adult division called Razorbill, and while there, I started work on Before I Fall. I left in 2009 to pursue writing full-time, and now I happily work in my pajamas every day.
I have a variety of interests apart from writing, including reading, cooking, traveling, dancing, running, and making up weird songs. Some of my favorite things are: being cozy; fires; autumn; fuzzy slippers; very high heels; great wine; dark chocolate; ketchup; pasta. Things I hate: practical shoes, liars, and bananas. I live in Brooklyn, New York, with my best friend and fiancé, Michael.

The major themes in this book are loss and living life to the fullest. On Samantha's last day she tries to make the best decisions possible and doesn't want any regrets. The last of the page was just so beautifully written and might've been my favorite out of the whole book. I love that living your life to the fullest is one of the themes because you never know what's going to happen tonight, or tomorrow, or even in the next 5 minutes.

Character Discussions!

Samantha Kingston: Samantha is one of the popular girls in school that has it all. In the beginning I was a little on the fence about her, but as the story progressed, she began to grow on me. As much as I didn't like her at first, the amount of character development was just amazing. Sam went from not giving a crap about anything to actually caring about what happens to other people.

Kent McFuller: Definitely my second favorite character. He just seemed so darn cute and you could tell from the second that he was introduced in that first scene that he's been in love with Sam since forever. I kept looking forward to the scenes where he was in it. I just LURV him so much!

Lindsay Edgecombe: She was definitely the leader of Mean Girls--or the Plastics--whatever. But Sam and the other two girls followed her as if she were God's gift to the world. I didn't like Lindsay really because I just felt like she was just fake the entire time, but I will admit that she kinda sorta seemed like she's a good best friend. She was there for Samantha when she needed her.

My Random Statement: She makes out with a teacher! Come on! Seriously? That teacher was a total perv! EW!

My Favorite Quotes:

"I guess what I'm saying is there's no point in analyzing it. If you draw a circle. There will always be an inside and an outside, and unless you're a total nut job, it's pretty easy to see which is which."
This quote just reminds of how people say that there is only black and white, no shades of grey.

"A good friend keeps your secrets for you.
A best friend helps you keep your own secrets."

Ah, yes. The unwritten rule of friendships. If you didn't know this already, learn this, people!

"Here's another thing to remember: hope keeps you alive. Even when you're dead, it's the only thing that keeps you alive."
A beautiful Lauren Oliver quote! It got me right in the feels!

"My point is: maybe you can afford to wait. Maybe for you there's a tomorrow. Maybe for you there's one thousand tomorrows, or three thousand, or ten, so much time you can bathe in it, roll around in it, let it slide like coins through your fingers. So much time you can waste it.
But for some of us there's only today. And the truth is, you never really know."

It was so beautiful that it made me cry! I had to read it over and over again before it finally sunk in.

"I suppose that's the secret, if you're ever wishing for things to go back to the way they were. You just have to look up."
A small, sad smile moment.

"So many things become beautiful when you really look."
This quote is pretty self-explanatory. I love it.

"That's when I realized that certain moments go on forever. Even after they're over they still go on, even after you're dead and buried, those moments are lasting still, backward and forward, on into infinity. They are everything and everywhere all at once.
They are the meaning."

This is the page that made me cry! So many emotions!

"I'm not scared, if that's what you're wondering. The moment of death is full of sound and warmth and light, so much light it fills me, absorbs me: a tunnel of light shooting away, arcing up and up and up, and if singing were a feeling it would be this, this light, this lifting, like laughing . . .
The rest you have to find out for yourself."

Tears! Just so many tears! I swear, Lauren Oliver enjoys making me cry!

Did I like this book? Fan-flipping-tastic! Definitely one of my favorites!
Would I reread it? If I was in the mood to shed some tears, this is the book I'd grab!
Would I recommend it? Absolutely! This book was amazing!

My BTW Moment: *slaps forehead* That is what I get for taking so long to read this book! Oh! And this is a school review! That's why it isn't like my other ones. Thanks for reading!
--What did you think of this review? :D

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