Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Mar 8, 2011

Before I Fall could be titled "A day in the life of Sam". Sam (Samantha) Kingston is just your ordinary popular, somewhat mean and snobbish high school senior. She has three best friends and a boyfriend who is also popular (and who Sam has had a crush on for years). Life is good. Until the aftermath of a high school party sends Sam into a rabbit hole, leading her to relive the same day over and over. What would you do if you could keep reliving one day, possibly your last day alive? You could go wild since whatever you do will be probably be erased when you fall asleep that night. You could deny everything that’s happening and demand a return to normalcy. Perhaps you could change one little thing, just the exact, easily overlooked instance, that will right the world. Sam tries all of the above. In the process she discovers more about herself, her friends, and people who could be friends but weren’t in her “normal” life. Although she doesn’t always like what she discovers, Sam can’t help being changed by what she learns. Lauren Oliver’s writing, especially when she’s writing Sam’s thoughts, had me nodding along and thinking “yes, that’s exactly what it feels like.” Oliver describes what goes on inside us with uncanny accuracy.

Reviewed by Diane H.
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