Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Countdown: Day 9: Review: Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver + Giveaway

It’s Day 9! We’re getting closer to the big giveaways at the end of our event. Today, I have a review of one of the best reviewed and most loved book of 2010.  
Book Description via 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—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.

Source: Lauren Oliver (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

Samatha Kingston was a bitch. She was far from perfect, far from nice and far from the good type. She was one of the popular kids, the ones who get away with things that average kids can get punishment for. That was how she rolled. Until after Kent McFuller’s party. Until the accident. After that she lived the same day – the day of her death - seven times.

I could not blame Sam for what happened. But I also could not say that she did not contribute to what happened. Life is a series of cause and effect, a domino effect of things, people and actions interconnected. Sam’s circle interacted with the people outside of their circle with an advantage, an edge, a superiority that was there long before any of her friends were even born. It was just something expected out of them. Popularity and bullying were two things that were connected. Popular kids bully other kids. Bullied kids hater popular kids and vice versa. Here in my country, I’ve seen bullying too. But I guess it wasn’t as extreme as the level of bullying in other parts of the world. I didn’t know what it was like to be bullied because I never experienced it. It’s not like I bullied other people too. No. I was just out of that loop. I refused to be involved in those kinds of things. For this reason, I never expected that I’d come to feel for Juliet Sykes. She  was more than just ‘Mellow Yellow’ or ‘Psycho Killer,’ she was a person who deserved to be respected and considered as living, breathing human being.

After losing everything (knowing she won’t get to experience what it’s like living again), Sam learned to appreciate things that she usually takes for granted. She also found out about the weight of the consequences of all of her actions, whether she deliberately intended a certain effect or not. Since she was given seven chances to experience her last day on earth, she tried to avoid death itself, make the wrongs right and save two lives.

Oliver wrote a masterpiece. Honestly, I wanted to berate myself for not reading this as soon as it hit the shelves! It was probably the best Chick Lit-ish/afterlife read I got my hands on this year. Oliver’s writing was very descriptive, a bit nostalgic because it made me think of bittersweet memories, and above all, it was fun. The dialogue was very realistic. The characters were scrutinized with their best and their worst, their flaws, their rights and their wrongs. They were not perfect but they were not so bad either. They were party-loving, rose-seeking and rose-giving, sarcastic and humorous teenagers.

The plot was amazing. It was like reading the same story over and over again but at the same time, it was also like reading an entirely different story every time! It never ever ever became the same and boring. Far from it. With each day, the events became more and more interesting and I realized at the end, how much secrets, history and dirt were unearthed in those seven days. The strengths and weaknesses of Sam’s friendship and her family ties were unraveled. There was a second look into the personalities of her friends. They were imperfect but they were hers and she loved them for who they were.

Sam and Kent’s interactions were cute, sweet and a little awkward at times. Kent Mcfuller was far from popular. He was the editor-in-chief of the Tribulation and he was Sam’s childhood friend. And the guy who gave her her first kiss. As it turned out, he still liked Sam despite the distance between them. He was more caring and more deserving of Sam’s feelings as compared to Rob – the boyfriend. It was so sweet when Kent and Sam got to show and tell their feelings to each other. It all made me smile.

Before I Fall is a powerful and entertaining mind-tickler debut. Wonderfully written with just the right amount of humor, drama, romance, regret and surprise, this made me smile, laugh and almost cry.



For this post, there's no required comment because there's no individual giveaway for the featured book. But you will earn an entry for each comment you leave on any of the posts of Christmas Countdown. There will be a prize pack of signed books up for grabs soon - on Christmas Day.

If you missed any of the posts, click the picture below to see the line-up for the event.


  1. Thanks for the review, I've really been wanting to read this!
    kristy [at] dreamingbyday [dot] com

  2. Sounds like an amazing read and like nothing I have ever read before! Can't wait to read it!

  3. I loved this book! I'd love to have a copy for my classroom shelves, so I am entering even though I've read it. I bet lots of my students would love Ms. Oliver's writing and characters as much as I did!

    mrsderaps @ hotmail . com

  4. I love me a happy ending. While I enjoyed this book, I kind of wish it would have ended differently.

  5. Loved reading your review!
    marjoleinbookblog at gmail dot com

  6. Xmas Countdown Day 9 - extra entry
    d.septer at insightbb.com
    (I hope I'm doing this right...)

  7. I also found Before I Fall incredibly powerful. It was amazing!

  8. I really want to read this one.

  9. Been wanting to read this for the longest time! Great review.


  10. Thanks for th awesome reviw. This is on my wishlist.

  11. I've heard so many good things about Before I Fall that I may just have to read it now:) Thanks for the great review.

  12. You summed this up perfectly! I felt exactly the same way about this book. It was amazing. I was a little nervous before I began it, thinking that it would get repetitive but... wow, Lauren Oliver is fantastic. I am literally salivating to get my hands on Delirium if Before I Fall is any indicator of her talent!

  13. Great review!


  14. I've read nothing but great reviews for this book. Definitely one I can read and pass on to my friend to use in her middle school class room library.

    I follow on GFC.

    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com

  15. AHH I dying to read this book I love the cover and the concept of this awesome book
    Great Review!

    tweeted: http://twitter.com/khyla_rahchelle/status/17736403211259904


  16. Nice review

    I have seen this book almost in book blog out there.This is the "thousand" times I read the review but I still dont get bored. But it makes me want to read the book

    aleetha.ally at gmail dot com

  17. I just bought this and I'm excited to read it!

  18. Looks like such a good novel! I also read Delirium by Lauren Oliver and I was flashed by her extraordinary writing style,sooo good! Can't wait to read Before I Fall.

  19. Great review. Read alot about this and could never decide if I wanted to read it or not. Really think I do now. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  20. I have Before I Fall on my wishlist. I hope I can read it soon, many people says it's their favorite book.

    magabygc AT gmail.com

  21. one of the book that i still want to win !!

  22. I loved this book! Unfortunately I don't have my own copy but I really can't wait for Delirium!


  23. I've read sooo many good things about this book, and Lauren's writing. Unfortunately I haven't had the chance to read it yet. But I'll surely change that next year, with this book and/or Delirium =D

  24. Never got the Chance to read it , but sounds awesome :D

  25. All the reviews I have read of this book have said what a difficult book this is to get into because the MC is so unlikeable.
    They also said it was a great story once you got past that, so I have been in two minds about this book.
    Having read your review, I now really want to read this book, you gave a really good idea about the book without giving away what happened.

  26. i love this book so much. it's one of the first ones that really made me cry.