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Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Before I Fall (edition 2011)

by Lauren Oliver

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2,8883272,002 (3.98)104
Title:Before I Fall
Authors:Lauren Oliver
Info:HarperCollins (2011), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 496 pages
Collections:Read but unowned

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Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver


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English (321)  German (3)  Spanish (2)  Hungarian (1)  All (327)
Showing 1-5 of 321 (next | show all)
This was a decent YA contemporary fiction book with an element of magical realism to it. This book reminded me a lot of the Groundhog Day movie starring Bill Murray. Basically our heroine has to relive the same day over and over again; each time she figures out more about the people around her.

I listened to this on audiobook and the narrator did a great job. She sounds exactly like I am imaging Sam would and did a good job on other character voices as well.

Think of this as a high school mean girl version of Groundhog Day. There is a ton of high school drama. Sam is incredibly unlikable at the beginning of the book but she grows a lot as the book continues.

This book will make you think...some. Honestly this book doesn’t do anything all that creative; basically it analyzes bullying from the bully’s perspective and looks at how some cruelty is just plain thoughtlessness. I did like the character growth but felt that Sam remained fairly selfish throughout. Sam changes from being mean to people because she discounts them, to trying to help them to help herself move on with life. Throughout it all her main goal is to help herself.

Don’t get me wrong at times it's an engaging read and very emotional. It was an interesting change of pace for me since I read mostly fantasy. However, there wasn’t a lot here that many other YA books haven’t already addressed.

The ending completely sucks, although I don't think it could have kept with the tone of the story and ended any other way. I felt incredibly bad for the “nice guy” character of Kent; in the end I feel like he was the one screwed over the worst.

Overall I enjoyed it but didn't think it was anything all that special. It’s definitely not a “feel good” book, so be prepared to be depressed by it. The story is engaging and the characters are decently done. It’s pretty much a “mean girls” version of the Groundhog’s Day movie. This is the third Oliver book I have read this month (I got them at an Audible sale) and I think I am done with her as an author. Everything I’ve read so far by her has been okay but not great. ( )
  krau0098 | Dec 18, 2016 |
I dont get the hype behind this book. I did not care for it. The character changed and grew, but her ending was the same no matter what. The writing style was engaging and i would read something else by this author, but this one was a dud for me. ( )
  pickleroad | Nov 10, 2016 |
Wow. I really liked this one a lot. A dark adolescent version of Groundhog Day. ( )
  gayla.bassham | Nov 7, 2016 |
Sad ( )
  gail616 | Oct 18, 2016 |
Before I Fall is much better than Vanishing Girls. I was so disappointed in Vanishing Girls that I wasn’t sure if I wanted to read this one, but Lauren Oliver’s stories sound so intriguing that I had to give this one a try. I’m so glad that I did.

Sarah Drew did a fantastic job narrating the novel and bringing the characters to life.

The story has a Groundhog’s Day format with one day repeating, but I thought it was very effective and well executed. Each day brought on something new to the story, something different without feeling like you’re reading the same story over and over. I love YA novels like this one that address real teenage issues like underage drinking, drugs, bullying, cheating, and theft without trying to glamorize it.

The writing constantly moved forward at a pace that I found enjoyable. I wish I had a print copy of the book in front of me while I listened to the audiobook, because it had some very cute similes and metaphors.

Samantha and her friends are shallow, popular high school seniors and at times they sounded like they had the same personality, but that’s typical when you’re part of a clique like theirs. You must fit their mold or do not enter. The girls were wild and carefree with a vicious streak, especially towards Anna and Juliet. If these girls were real, they would be the type of girls that their quiet, shy classmates would envy, faults and all. They’d secretly want to be like those girls, going to parties, dating any popular guys they wanted, easily making friends with the other popular kids. As a teen, those things are important, but as an adult, you realize that those things are ridiculous.

I still found the characters interesting even with their shallowness. I had a very clear picture of what they looked like and what kind of people they were; phony, pretentious, entitled – except for Samantha.

Don’t get the wrong impression. This isn’t a superficial, YA novel that has nothing to offer. It actually gives you hope for the Z generation of kids. All it takes is one teen who wants to stand up for another who is bullied. One character learns that his actions have consequences and just because he’s a good-looking, popular boy, he doesn’t get a free pass. Another character has a lisp, but she appears comfortable with it. Samantha has more depth and insight than most teens. She has compassion for others, while her friends are self-absorbed brats. She sees the pretentiousness in her friends. She sees that their act is just a façade to hide their own fears. They’re convincing actors. If more teens realized this, less teens would be bullied because they’d know that their bullies are just as afraid (and maybe even more) than they are.

I was a little disappointed in the ending, not because it was bad, but because I wanted it to end differently. Before I Fall gives me hope for Lauren Oliver and now I actually want to read another one of her novels.

I recommend this book to fans of YA novels, especially novels that deal with real issues.
( )
  JennysBookBag.com | Sep 28, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 321 (next | show all)
Although somewhat predictable, the plot drives forward and teens will want to see where Sam's choices lead.
added by khuggard | editSchool Library Journal, Amy J. Chow

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lauren Oliverprimary authorall editionscalculated
Drew, SarahNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In loving memory of Semon Emil Knudsen
Peter: Thank you for giving me some of my greatest hits. I miss you.
First words

They say that just before you die your whole life flashes before your eyes, but that's not how it happened for me.

"Beep beep", Lindsay calls out.
''Here's one of the things I learned that morning: if you cross a line and nothing happens, the line loses meaning.''
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
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—looks, popularity, the perfect boyfriend. Friday, February 12th should be just another day in her charmed life. Instead, it’s her last. The catch: Samantha still wakes up the next morning. In fact, she re-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 had ever imagined.
Haiku summary
It's like Groundhog Day

for young women- in book form

with a sad ending.


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After she dies in a car crash, teenaged Samantha relives the day of her death over and over again until, on the seventh day, she finally discovers a way to save herself.

(summary from another edition)

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