Title: Before I Fall
Author: Lauren Oliver
Release date: 2 March 2012
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.
Lauren Oliver makes an outstanding debut with this book. I had read very good reviews about it, but I didn't think I would like it that much.
In Before I Fall we follow Sam's story, a very popular high school girl that had a perfect life (or not that perfect, as we discover more into the book). That is Cupid's Day, 12th of February, when friends and couples give roses as presents. Which is also useful to see the popularity level of each student. On top of that, that day is the big day, the day when she will have sex for the first time with her boyfriend Rob. But she receives a new rose, much more beautiful than the others, and later discovers that it's from a childhood friend who she hasn't spoken to in a long time, Kent. He is known for his cartoon drawings, although he is way far from Sam's popularity level. They are different types of people. And on that night he is throwing a big party in his house.
The day goes on as usual. She spends time with her friends, goes out to have dinner with them, goes to the party... But once she's there things don't go as she'd have liked to. One things leads to another, and when the girls are leaving the party they have a car accident. Sam hears the screams, feels the impact, suffers the pain, sees everything black... But wakes up to the sound of her alarm. And it is 12th of February. Again. At first she doesn't believe it and decides that it must have been something like dejavú. But when everything happens again, and they have the accident for the second time, she finally realizes that she's really repeating the day of her death. She tries to solve it; not going to the party, avoiding the accident... But it doesn't work and she ends up wondering if that is another kind of death, if it is really worth making it right. And day after day, she discovers new things. Things about her and about her friends. She starts to change, to grow up, and sees the world from another point of view.
At first I didn't like Sam. She was popular, spoiled and arrogant, and I found her a little irritating. But I kept reading. The story drew me in completely after a few chapters and I found her relationship with Kent really sweet. Oh, and how sad it was. I cried a lot at the end.