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Before I Fall

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With this stunning debut novel, New York Times bestselling author Lauren Oliver emerged as one of today's foremost authors of young adult fiction. Like Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why and Gayle Forman's If I Stay, Before I Fall raises thought-provoking questions about love, death, and how one person's life can affect so many others.

For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—"Cupid Day"—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night.

However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam 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 ever imagined.

Named to numerous state reading lists, this novel was also recognized as a Best Book of the Year by Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, The Daily Beast, NPR, and Publishers Weekly. It has been optioned for film by Fox 2000 Pictures.

Supports the Common Core State Standards.

470 pages, Paperback

First published February 14, 2010

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About the author

Lauren Oliver

45 books119k followers
Lauren Oliver is the cofounder of media and content development company Glasstown Entertainment, where she serves as the president of production. She is also the New York Times bestselling author of the YA novels Replica, Vanishing Girls, Panic, and the Delirium trilogy: Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem, which have been translated into more than thirty languages. The film rights to both Replica and Lauren's bestselling first novel, Before I Fall, were acquired by AwesomenessTV; Before I Fall is now a major motion picture and opened in theaters March of 2017. The sequel to Replica, titled Ringer, is her most recent novel and was released October 3rd, 2017.

Her novels for middle grade readers include The Spindlers, Liesl & Po, and the Curiosity House series, co-written with H. C. Chester. She has written one novel for adults, Rooms.

A graduate of the University of Chicago and NYU's MFA program, Lauren Oliver divides her time between New York, Connecticut, and a variety of airport lounges. You can visit her online at www.laurenoliverbooks.com.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 21,683 reviews
Profile Image for Kat Kennedy.
475 reviews16.3k followers
December 20, 2011
I have to confess something before I write this review. This book is about a teenager, Sam, who is a Mean Girl who trips into Groundhog Day world and is set on a path to redemption. My confession is that I used to be a girl almost exactly like Sam.

Shallow, egotistical and worst of all - mean. Really, really mean.

I've commented before on the fact that I was a terrible teenager. My parents did not so much try to raise me through these years. More like they tried to survive me as you would a hurricane. In this book, Sam comes to the final realization that she is a bitch. I know I related to this book more perhaps than some other readers would because I had to come to my own realization about that. It is a strange and aggravatingly unsettling experience to wake up and realize the world neither revolves around you, nor should it, because you are a horrible person. Yet, that's nothing compared to living your teenage years on the receiving end of bullshit people like me dished out to other people.

I can imagine growing up with that kind of experience would make you quite unsympathetic to Sam. But Sam is on a path and a journey. Oliver doesn't withhold on characterization. Every petty, mean, shallow act and thought is shamelessly paraded here. I loved the cast and the complicated relationships they all had. I loved Sam and Kent's relationship as well as Sam and Lindsey's relationship. Most of the people in this book felt like people I'd known or met in real life.

The writing worked well for this novel. Never too flowery or explanatory but rather serving the purpose of translating complicated thoughts and feeling to the reader without being burdensome or boring.

Every time I felt Sam was a little too...

Annoying Facebook Girl

Oliver managed to turn it around and make her...

rainbow dash

I think it took a lot of courage to write Sam's characterization as she did. A lot of YA fiction depicts the Perfect Female ala Bella Swan. Where character flaws amount to being clumsy and everyone they ever meet thinks they're amazing and mature and wise beyond their years. (Note: Zoe Redbird, no, you are not.)

My only complaint about the book is in the spoiler down below. Basically, I loved it, I connected to it. I felt like the themes were handled in a believable, realistic way.

I guess this book made me melancholy. I think about Juliet Sykes and remember that I once had my own Juliet Sykes. I wish I could go back in time and change that. I wish I could somehow make amends to her. Hell, I wish I could even remember her real name and not just all the disgusting nicknames we gave her. I wish I'd been the kind of teenager I could be proud of. Yet this book made me glad that I did change, that I have tomorrow to keep trying and learning and growing. It makes me happy to think that even I deserved a chance at redemption and to choose a different way to live my life.

Most of all, this book makes me really bloody happy that I'm an adult now and that I never, ever, have to go back. Ever.

Profile Image for Emily May.
1,990 reviews298k followers
October 21, 2015
I shiver, thinking about how easy it is to be totally wrong about people - to see one tiny part of them and confuse it for the whole.

4 1/2 stars. Back in 2010, I read Before I Fall and immediately thought I'd found a new favourite author. I eagerly awaited every book Lauren Oliver released after it and yet, I have disliked every single one. My dislike for her writing style in books like Rooms and Vanishing Girls made me wonder what happened.

Could it be that Oliver's style had so drastically changed? Or was it my own changing tastes that had pulled me away from her books?

Returning to this book in 2015, it is still as fantastic as I remember. It is truly such a strong YA Contemporary (with a non-realistic spin) and the writing is perfect. The saddest thing about reading this book again was finally understanding how much Oliver's style has changed, in my opinion, for the worse.

Before I Fall is about popular mean girl - Samantha Kingston - and her group of popular friends. When Samantha dies in a car crash on the eve of her school's "Cupid Day", she awakens once again in the morning of the same day. Has she been given a second chance? A chance to put it right? To solve the mystery? To prevent her death?

For the next seven days, Samantha wakes up on February 12. She must learn the truth behind her unfortunate end and, by doing so, she finds herself tangled up in the lives of those she'd cared little for before.

The novel's strength is both in the overarching story and its outcome, and also in the details. So many characters are affected by Samantha's actions and they become more and more developed and complex as Samantha learns to really see them. Every character is handled with sympathy, turning mean girls, losers and geeks into human beings, each with their own story.

It is a lesson on the dangers of bullying and how careless actions can have a huge negative impact on someone's life. But it also offers an understanding and sometimes sympathetic view of the people who do the bullying. It's such an interesting, multi-layered story.

Moving, thoughtful, and just as powerful the second time around.

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Profile Image for Heather.
295 reviews13.9k followers
December 20, 2016
I hated this book, and loved it. It’s cruel, and frustrating, unfair, and yet it’s also sad, and hopeful, and honest and authentic. I’m not sure how everyone else feels about their High School experience, but I despised mine. You couldn’t pay me to go back. However, this story was so vivid, that I felt as though I could smell the grease from the cafeteria, feel the rough tile on the bathroom floor and the chill of that cold fateful night. I even cringed at the hurt that all these characters so casually inflicted upon one another, so I guess I went back after all.

Sam is not a nice girl. In fact, she is a bit of a bitch. Scratch that, she is a bitch. She doesn’t set out to maliciously attack anyone, but she doesn’t stand against it either. She won’t instigate the chant of “psycho” at the school outcast, but she shouts it just as loudly as her group of popular she witches. Worse, she actually believes that others should just accept the way they are mercilessly attacked because she was once mocked in the third grade for blushing, as if blushing were the equivalent to being called a whore, who bared the goods for grass when the person at the butt of that malicious lie doesn’t smoke or has even been kissed. Naturally, when Samantha meets an unfortunate end after forcing us to spend a day in her insipid world, I hardly felt bad for her. How sad is that? A teen girl dies tragically, and I thought she got what she deserved. Thus is the beauty of this book.

Told in seven chapters, each representing the same day, Before I Fall tells the story of a typically popular girl, who gets six days to right some wrongs. Make no mistake. I hardly think one day is sufficient to mend the hurt that these girls created. It in no way rectifies the things that Samantha has done, but it’s a start in the right direction. Rather, I felt this story allowed readers to realize that there is depth to us all, even the bitches and we all have thoughts that should shame us. The character development of all the characters was astounding, and the character growth, drastic though it may be, was entirely believable.
Profile Image for Bonnie.
1,366 reviews114 followers
June 6, 2011
Warning: Major Spoilers below (including the very ending). And foul language. MUCH foul language

La la la, spoilers.

Still spoilers.

And language to make your grandmother blush.

Fuck you book. Fuck. You. I want to drop this book to two stars for that goddamn ending. But I can’t because even with that fucking ending it is not really a two-star book at all. So it gets dropped one star. DAMN YOU. I knew the ending was coming. This is the problem with reading the ending first (well, near the beginning). I think I’d have been even angrier if I hadn’t known, though, because I’d be expecting that it would have a Groundhog Day's ending and Sam, having learned her lesson on being a better person, would get to enjoy the new, better life she’s created. But no. She stays dead. FUCK YOU BOOK. I get your point, Oliver. Sam’s real mission was to sacrifice herself for Juliet. That’s what she came back seven days for, to be Juliet’s guardian angel or something. You know what? FUCK THAT. Because Juliet might be better off, but everyone else in Sam’s life? You don’t think it will completely devastate her family? Her little sister? Her parents? Do you know what the divorce rate is for parents who have lost a child?!?!? It’s not like they remember the other days Sam lived after death, either. So their last memories of her will be a wholly inadequate moment before Sam ran off to school and was nice and not a brat. Not a whole day together, not a dinner out, nothing big or something to hold onto. AND WHAT ABOUT KENT?!?!?!? He gets to see the girl he loves—who has just stopped being a bitch and admitted she likes him—die. How horrible. Really think he’s going to be okay, Oliver? Really think you didn’t just fuck up the most sympathetic character in your entire book? Scratch that, the two most sympathetic characters in your book (adorable little sister Izzy and adorable, amazing Kent)!?!?! Just because we don’t get to see the tragedy rip through everyone’s life like a bomb and you have Sam give some bullshit uplifting monologue at the end doesn’t make it okay. Do you know why Groundhog Day doesn’t end with Bill Murray dead? BECAUSE NOBODY WANTS TO SEE THAT ENDING!!! We want to see him ride off into the sunset with Andie Macdowell, both happier and better. WE DON’T WANT TO SEE BILL MURRAY’S GODDAMN FUNERAL!!! GAAAAAHHHHHH.

The book started out slowly, and Sam is a right proper bitch to begin with. It isn’t until afterlife day five (she gets seven days) that she begins to turn around. Although the complete fucking breakdown of day four was glorious. I think I’m a masochist, because I love angry, self-destructive, insane meltdowns by heroines, especially when they end with the realization that there was no beauty in the breakdown, that it was a horrible, horrible mess and that instead of feeling free they feel even worse than before. And I especially love it when they are comforted by adorable, awesome love interests like Kent.

Although set-up Sam was annoying (though realistic, ouch), when Sam developed and stopped being so shallow and self-absorbed I loved her. And I loved her even more for knowing how horrid she had been. There was so much development, and it all rang true. WHICH MADE THE ENDING EVEN WORSE.

You know what, Oliver? I don’t feel bad anymore for thinking your Delirium was a pathetic piece of crap cashing in on the post-Hunger Games dystopian YA craze. Because at least it will prevent you from DESTROYING MY SOUL for however many years it takes you to finish writing your idiotically premised trilogy (a society that hates love? Really? Really?). Maybe by then you will have learned a lesson and not written such, terrible, terrible endings to what otherwise could be a five star-level book. I actually contemplated hurling this book at the wall when I finished it, but it is 2am and I am a guest in someone else’s house and I don’t want to be rude. Now I’m going to pretend that the ending didn’t happen and Kent and Sam live happily ever after and both go to college in Boston and show up happily married at Izzy’s high school graduation and everyone isn’t destroyed by grief because Sam threw herself into a truck for Juliet. Don't think I can't, Oliver, because I've managed to half-convince myself over the years that Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon ends with Jen & Lo and Li Mu Bai & Yu Shu Lien happily married with beautiful babies and everyone hanging out and kung fu fighting together (the real ending made me angry for days). So, Oliver, when I think about this book in the future (IF I THINK ABOUT IT AT ALL), don't think I wont' half-believe that Kent and Sam are happily married with beautiful babies (AND MAYBE EVEN KUNG FU FIGHTING, I DON'T KNOW!!!).

P.S. If you are masochistic enough to read the book after this review, listen to “Only If You Run” by Julian Plenti on Days 5-7. It is awesome and if this ever gets made into a movie (WITH A BETTER ENDING) it has to be on the soundtrack.

Addendum: Okay, I’ve calmed down a bit and got some sleep and now am more coherent and less blindingly angry. And I’ve figured out why the ending bothered me so much: it was a cheap trick. Partly because it feels like Oliver’s response to those who will identify this as Groundhog Day meets Mean Girls (which it totally is, but in a good way). The ending seems to scream, “It might be like those movies, but look how much deeper this is. The main character dies. You don’t see THAT in those movies, hunh?!?” But mostly because martyrdom is fiction’s shorthand for redemption. And, sometimes, it works (see: my undying love for Sydney Carton in A Tale of Two Cities). But in this book it doesn’t. There’s a quote banging around my head that I can’t source: “Dying is easy. It’s living that’s hard.” And dying was the easy way out for Sam. She spent her entire afterlife knowing that she would never have to live with the consequences of her actions. It was most obvious in the utter breakdown of day four, but it was present every single day. Throwing yourself in front of a truck can’t be easy, but for Sam I think it would be even harder for her to live out the rest of high school, to have to stand up to Lindsay next time she tortured Juliet or wrote nasty graffiti about other girls or spread rumors about how so-and-so was such a slut or tried to talk Sam out of dating a social loser like Kent. Dealing with that every single day and knowing she had to live with the ramifications of her actions would be a true test of character for Sam. Could she do it? Could she stand up to the constant social pressure? Could she stand up to her friends? To Lindsay? Could she be nice to people and defend them and not let her friends be cruel? Could she risk being unpopular? Or would she slide back to the easier path, staying silent, telling herself it’s not her fault because she didn’t start it, that she saved Juliet’s life that one time, so her karmic debt is paid?

A better ending would have Sam not be able to return to normal until she stands up for Juliet at the party. Not try to talk Juliet out of suicide in private. Not avoid future consequences by dying. But being there when Juliet walks into the party and Lindsay starts a chant of “Pscyho! Psycho!” Standing in front of everyone, in front of all her friends and peers, and telling them all to shut it, to stop being mean to Juliet. To tell everyone that Juliet’s not weird, that they need to grow up and stop being such bullies. And then to wake up the next day and go to school and deal with the fallout of that. And actually befriend Juliet and deal with whatever the social consequences are. A less shocking ending, yeah. But a more satisfying one.
Profile Image for Penny.
215 reviews1,367 followers
May 16, 2014
Before I get to the review I just wanted to let everyone know I don't typically write reviews for books I love. The reason being, I'm not good at writing worth-while and positive reviews (as opposed to my uncanny ability to write crazy rants about books I totally loathe). Or rather, I know I'm not up to the task: writing a review worthy of a book so beautiful, so eloquently written I can't stop thinking about it long after I've finished it.

I know there is nothing I could say that could not be better said by the book itself, or even just a review written by someone who is smarter than me has a way with words.

That said, here I am, attempting to write a review worthy of Before I Fall. If I fail, which is more than likely, please do not hold it against the book--it isn't the book's fault I'm not a talented writer.

So without further ado...

Popular girl Samantha Kingston thinks a lot about the what she's done throughout her seventeen years of life as she relives her last day over and over again. In all, Samantha is given seven chances to figure out what went wrong, what chain of events brought about her death. Seven opportunities to change and make things right. Seven days to save herself.

At first glance, Samantha--Sam--doesn't come across as anything special. Sure, she's popular but other than her superior social standing she's basically your average teenager. Her biggest concern is her virginity, which she will be losing to her boyfriend that night--she's freaked out but feels it's time to get it over with. Other than that she's wondering how many roses she'll have by the end of Cupid Day and if she looks okay considering she didn't get to shower that morning.

However, it doesn't take long before we're given a better, more accurate picture of the type of person Samantha Kingston truly is. Over the course of the day she cheats on a test, flirts shamelessly with her calculus teacher, cuts class, gets pretty drunk and treats her classmates like garbage--Sam and her friends are especially cruel to one girl in particular.

All in all it's an average school day for Samantha Kingston.

Clearly I didn't like Samantha Kingston at the beginning of this novel. She's a horrible self-absorbed teenager. What's worse is the fact that she thinks so highly of herself and her friends, saying:
"I'm not going to lie, though. It's nice that everything's easy for us. It's a good feeling knowing you can basically do whatever you want and there won't be any consequences."

And then goes on to say:
"If high school were a game of poker, Lindsey, Ally, Elody and I would be holding 80 percent of the cards."

After Sam finishes recounting her last day--in which she clearly does not come out looking good--she tells us about how she died, then says:
"Before you start pointing fingers, let me ask you: is what I did really so bad? So bad I deserved to die? So bad I deserved to die like that? Is what I did really so much worse than what anybody else does? Is it really so much worse than what you do? Think about it."

Like everyone else I went to high school with girls like Samantha Kingston and her friends. And like most everyone else I haaaaated those girls. So. Much. Who wants to read a story about a bunch of horrible teenagers? No one. But you know what? Turns out when I was seventeen I was not that much better than Samantha Kingston. Sure I wasn't a total A-hole, but the truth is I gossiped, lied, cheated, cut class--the works. And I treated a lot of people badly--peers and adults. But I haven't really spent too much time thinking about the person I was in high school. Not until Sam asks us, the readers, if what she did is so much worse than what we do.

That's why I kept reading.

As Sam relives February 12 we see her grow and change. At first her attempts at being a better person are so half-hearted, or ill-concieved you wonder if she's actually trying. And yeah, as the reader I got frustrated with Sam. I wanted to see her change right away, and she didn't. Then I remembered she's a spoiled teenager that hasn't been made to work for anything in her life. Remember, it was Sam herself who admitted:
"It's nice that everything's easy for us. It's a good feeling knowing you can basically do whatever you want and there won't be any consequences."

That's Sam's mentality at the beginning of this story, her reality, so of course she has no clue how to truly change, to be the better person.

However, not many February 12ths pass when a horrifying turn of events forces Sam to acknowledge the ugly truth. Sam takes a good look at herself, at her friends, and what she sees drives her to an all-time low--when Sam hits bottom she really hits bottom.

Sam needs that low point, the chance to spiral out of control, even if it's just for one day because it is only after she's humbled we see her make any significant changes. She starts to look at all she has (or rather, had) and be grateful for it. She looks at her family in a whole new light, and realizes just how much she truly loves them. She looks at her little sister specifically--a sweet little seven-year-old who is proud of who she is--and realizes she admires her little sister because she embraces the things that make her different from all her peers.

After Sam's low point her thoughts, her ideas become downright beautiful/amazing. There were many times I stopped to reread passages, and even consider them for a bit. Example:
"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's at this point that my feelings from this book went from like to love.

And no, Sam still doesn't get things right away. She still struggles, but the important part is she's really trying, really working. She learns from her mistakes and makes corrections. Sam realizes, despite her belief that she can't be fixed, it's never too late to change. Some of Sam's changes don't come about until the 11th hour, but they do come.

And yes, I love how this book ends. I know there are many people who simply didn't like this book because of how it ends, and for the life of me I cannot understand why. Any other ending would have been a complete cop-out (think about it). Plus,

I love this book, it is one of my favorites. I haven't been able to stop thinking about this book since I finished reading it two weeks ago, and because of that it will always have a home on my bookshelf.

By the way, I've spent an embarrassingly long amount of time trying to cobble together a semi-decent review of this book. Now go purchase a copy of Before I Fall, stat, you won't be sorry.

P.S. this book deserves six stars.

Update April 4, 2010: my husband, who typically doesn't like any of the books I like, just stayed up all night reading Before I Fall. When he finished it he woke me up to thank me for all but shoving this book down his throat (and he wasn't being ironic. Believe me, I checked). He sincerely likes this book. More than anything he loves the way Lauren Oliver writes, but overall he likes the story quite a bit. It was nice talking to him about it this morning, we had a very pleasant discussion. :)
Profile Image for Federico DN.
395 reviews791 followers
June 9, 2022
Groundhog’s Day meets Mean Girls.

Samantha Kingston is 17 years old and goes to Ridgeview High. She’s one of the most popular girls in school, has the best friends, the hottest boyfriend, and everything she ever wanted. And she is going to die tonight. And tomorrow. And the day after tomorrow...

Stuck in a death loop, Samantha starts to wonder. Is she cursed? Has she say or done anything to deserve this? And most importantly, can she break free? Can you stop Death?

I love the time loop thing, and time travel. Sucker for it, every time. Groundhog’s Day is my ultimate favorite movie of all time, and it’s even mentioned in the book. Sam Kingston is hardly a Regina George, but certainly has enough attitudes to be part of the ‘Plastics’, or ‘Bitches’, however you like to call them.

This novel deals with some important topics like sisterhood, redemption, and bullying. I specially loved this book’s heartfelt take on friendship, veeery misguided friendship on several occasions, but real loving friendship nonetheless. Many endearing moments and lovely quotes to remember. Izzy and Kent were awesome. Slow burn was spectacular. The ending was fairly predictable, but the uplifting trip to get there was absolutely more than worth it.

Time thing makes me undulate. I’m not sure if this is a great book per se, but it really was a great book for me. Unputdownable. Fav status earned. If you like any of the movies listed above, I’m pretty confident you should like it.

Still remaining, the movie (2017)

PERSONAL NOTE : I was neither popular or unpopular at school. Mostly inclined for low profile but easily capable of surprising anyone if I wanted to. Shine-when-promted. Still am.
[2010] [470p] [YA] [Conditional Recommendable] [Personal Favorite] [Time Loop] [Sisterhood][Bullying]

El Día de la Marmota se encuentra con Chicas Pesadas.

Samantha Kingston tiene 17 años y va a la secundaria Ridgeview. Es una de las chicas mas populares de la escuela, tiene las mejores amigas, el novio más atractivo y todo lo que ella quiere. Y va a morir esta noche. Y mañana. Y el día siguiente a mañana…

Atrapada en un círculo de muerte, Sam empieza a preguntarse. Está maldita? Dijo o hizo algo para merecer esto? Y aún más importante, acaso puede liberarse? Se puede detener a la Muerte?

Amo lo del círculo infinito, y viaje a través del tiempo. Caigo a pleno con ello, siempre. El Día de la Marmota es mi absoluta película preferida de todos los tiempos, e incluso es mencionada en el libro. Sam Kingston está lejos de ser una Regina George, pero ciertamente tiene suficientes actitudes para ser parte del grupo de las ‘Plásticas’, o ‘Perras’, como te guste llamarlas.

Esta novela trata con importantes tópicos como hermandad, redención y bullying. Amé especialmente la sentida forma en que esta novela trata la amistad, amistad muuuy mal direccionada en varias ocasiones, pero amistad real y amorosa sin embargo. Muchos momentos entrañables y preciosas citas para recordar. Izzy y Kent fueron terriblemente adorables. El ardor lento fue espectacular. El final es bastante predecible, pero el viaje inspirador para llegar hasta ahí más que valió la pena.

Lo del tiempo me hace ondular. No estoy seguro de que este sea un gran libro en sí mismo, pero fue un gran libro para mí. No podía dejar de leerlo. Un lugar en Favoritos ganado. Si te gusta alguna de las películas mencionadas arriba, estoy bastante seguro que podrías disfrutarlo.

Todavía pendiente, la película (2017)

NOTA PERSONAL : No fui popular o impopular en la escuela. Inclinado a mantener perfil bajo pero fácilmente capaz de sorprender a cualquiera si quería. Brillar-cuando-conviene. Aún todavía.
[2010] [470p] [Joven Adulto] [Recomendable Condicional] [Favorito Personal] [Círculo de Tiempo] [Fermandad] [Bullying]
Profile Image for Zoë.
328 reviews65.8k followers
December 16, 2016

Though I really enjoy Lauren Oliver's writing style, I struggled finding the motivation to finish this book. The main character, a popular and catty high school girl named Sam, dies and is forced to relive that day several times. I was absolutely in love with the story for the first couple of days, but then it felt tedious having Sam wake up and relive February 12th time and time again. I totally understand why it's many people's favorite book, I just wish it was shorter. Because of this, I do think it will make a fabulous movie and I can't wait to see it when it hits theaters!
Profile Image for Elle.
34 reviews844 followers
January 30, 2011
I'd heard from quite a few people that this book was pretty good...

That may be the most OUTRAGEOUS understatement of all time.

'Pretty good' doesn't explain the embarrassing amount of tears that poured out of me.

'Pretty good' doesn't touch on Lauren Oliver's incredible way with words and imagery.

'Pretty good' doesn't describe the range of conflicting emotions the story sparked in me.

And 'Pretty good' certainly doesn't account for the fact that, once I finished the final page, I literally threw the book at my husband and demanded he re-write the final chapter.

... but the ending is a whole other discussion for which I have no time/energy to get into.

But aside from the infuriating conclusion, this book was out-effing-standing. It had my absolute undivided attention EVEN THOUGH I was reading it while last nights episode of Hotel Babylon was on and I didn't even stop reading when, out of the corner of my little eye, I saw Charlie take his shirt off. NOT EVEN THEN!

So no, pretty good doesn't exactly cover it. But why take my word for it?

"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 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."

You see?

It almost got that final 5th star. Almost.

In fact, let's give it a grand total of four-and-three-quarters stars and call it a day.

Profile Image for Karolina.
83 reviews427 followers
April 4, 2013

I had high expectations for this book for 2 reasons: 1. I loved Delirium, it's one of my favorite series and 2. so many people raved about Before I fall , saying it is the best of Oliver's work. I couldn't disagree more. At the beginning I couldn't get into the story, it was a bit repetitive, so I had to put it down and read something else in the meantime. In the end I was getting a bit frustrated as I couldn't understand the whole idea of the book. Having finished it yesterday I've been thinking about it since and I still don't get it. Let me explain why...

The whole story is focused on Sam's last day and her death in a car accident. Afterwards she keeps reliving it, no matter what she does when she wakes up it's still Friday the 12. The main thing I have a problem with is the dimension she is in, first I was hoping it's kind of coma and she will come back to life, but no she (or her soul?) keeps existing in a kind of a limbo and is trying to move on.

Final conclusion of the book is that she had to learn to sacrifice her life (remember she's already dead) in order to move on, where? why? no explanation whatsoever. She just dies one last time and that's it. And even tho she does change during the whole journey, and also learns all the awful things her fiend did (including driving someone to suicide) she still loves her because she's her friend, really? I understand Oliver tried to write a book about cruel reality of teenage life and high school, wanted to pass a message of values more important than money or popularity. That I understand, everything else not so much.

The book is well written, and if you don't focus too much no the metaphysical dimension of it you might enjoy it. I think that was my problem, I put too much thought into it. Unfortunately I was not affected by it and didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would.
Profile Image for jessica.
2,555 reviews35.6k followers
August 10, 2018
i definitely know im in the minority here with my opinion, so please just bear with me for a hot minute.

i dont want to turn this into a rant because i absolutely adore lauren oliver, but this book just wasnt for me. and the only reason for that was the characters - i found myself not empathising with them, thought they completely unlikable, and it got to the point where halfway through the book i just did not care what happened to any of them. i know this is a story about growth and development, but even after sam supposedly became ‘enlightened’ and ‘changed for the better,’ she still seemed just as selfish and entitled as she did at the beginning of the story. which is such a shame.

because the message of the book is actually a great one - to live your life in a positive way, because you never know how the smallest of interactions can impact someone else - and i love that. but connecting with characters is a large part of what makes reading enjoyable for me. so if i dont like the characters, its pretty much a given that i will struggle with the book, even if the story is a good one.

im still a lauren oliver fan - i just think this book was a random miss for me amongst her large bibliography of hits.

2.5 stars
Profile Image for Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin.
3,535 reviews9,948 followers
March 9, 2017

I am not going for these evil •sshole girls on here!


I cringed and raged through most of the book. I didn't give a rat's •ss about these evil girls. The worse was Lindsay to me.

The only reason I have the book 2 stars is because Sam redeemed herself after all of the days she relived. She went back and did all of the right things. Whether it was all a dream or something, I don't know but she did good in the end. The very end was bittersweet in it's own way.

But, going through the books and hearing all of the things the girls did to other people, because they were bullies, was just sick. I hate bullies so freaking much and the book has to blow my mind in order for me to love a book with them in it. This one just didn't.

I'm not going to go on and on about it. I'm so glad that sooooooooooooo many of my friends loved the book with the exception of a few =)


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 up, 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.

MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List
Profile Image for Annalisa.
547 reviews1,379 followers
June 13, 2010
Reading through Sam's last day of life, I was transported back to high school with those girls who were shallow, self-centered, and unaware and thought they were cool and better than everyone else because they were shallow, self-centered, and unaware. I felt emotions I had not experienced in years, emotions I had long forgotten. Oliver captures that teenage-centric narcissism so vividly, so much more intently than I ever understood in high school, that I couldn't help but hate Sam and feel some level of vindictive justice.

As she starts the same day over again, just as full of herself, I doubted Sam could grow enough to satisfy me. But she did. It was slow and painstaking at times; sometimes I wanted Sam to just get it and be fixed, but that wouldn't have been realistic. She needed to figure it out on her own and at her own pace. Oliver does an excellent job showing us that gradual shift from spoiled teenager to thoughtful person, realizing that there were consequences to her actions, that the universe did not revolve around her, that maybe popularity wasn't worth the price she'd paid for it. While I don't think Sam reached perfect self-actualization, I don't think I wanted her to. She had a long way to come and I believed a character that was aware but still a little bit selfish.

Oliver is an amazing writer, so unobtrusive and descriptive. I didn't so much read this book as experience it. She manages to keep a day that is lived over and over again from being repetitive and gives us enough events in that day to give Sam plenty of chances to both mess up and unmess other people's lives. She manages to take a story that doesn't sound very original (Mean Girls vs. Groundhog Day) and own it. She manages to make me care about a girl that I couldn't stand, that represents very real girls that I couldn't stand (but not Lindsay; I never liked her).

Profile Image for karen.
3,988 reviews170k followers
January 11, 2019
well, well, well,
this one was a surprise.

yes, teen fiction, you have won me over, but usually it is the stuff on the "oh, no, the world has been essploded!!" or "oh, no - all the cats in the world have turned evil and are coming for us!!" end of the spectrum that captivates me.

realistic teen fiction usually leaves me cold.

and this is realistic teen fiction with a twist, obviously. this is groundhog day with a jerky teen girl in he jerky bill murray role. but all the day-to-day bits in between are simple, realistic teen fiction.

and it won me over. i could not stop reading this book. i was totally sucked in to the story, the narrator's "do thoughtless things unto others" mentality, and the comeuppance. (oh, i love justice. i love comeuppance) samantha is pretty and popular and easily swayed. seduced by the cult of lindsay, she forgets how to be a decent person and gets brainwashed into performing casual cruelties without even thinking about them; they become her default setting, so much so that she doesn't even remember half of them. those may be my favorite scenes, when a character is reminding samantha of some mean thing she has done and she doesn't even remember. it has become such a knee-jerk response for her - to be mean, that it is not even conscious enough for her to retain memories of it. good stuff.

there are a ton of weakly-written moments/characters/subplots but there is just so much momentum to the story that you barely notice it while you are reading, and only really notice it if, say, you start sitting down to write a book review of it.

the party scene/s is/are very well-written, though. i didn't drink in high school because i observed how idiotic teenagers were when intoxicated, so i never went to parties. i hosted small gatherings at my house where i would cook, let's call them "munchies," for a select group of friends and everyone was calm and chill and nothing got broken and no one puked and the music was good. those party scenes terrified me.i cannot think of anything worse than a drunken teen party. even when i was a teen. i loved this book, but all the characters were awful. they are always laughing over stupid things, and you can just feel that laughter - shrill and desperate and competitive. picture that drunk. oooh, no thanks.

favorite line - after a passage about clothing conformity in her school, "it's connecticut: being like the people around you is the whole point."

surprisingly good read.
damn you, teen fiction!

come to my blog!
Profile Image for MischaS_.
785 reviews1,372 followers
January 13, 2020
One of my most favourite books to this day. I need to re-read this one. It really fit the time of my life, which was difficult for me and in a way, the book helped me to cope. I don't know if that's the reason why I liked it so much or not. So, time to re-read it, I guess. To see where the book really stands.
Profile Image for Evgnossia O'Hara.
102 reviews206 followers
May 9, 2018
Review was originally published on my Blog Through the Chapters

*3.5 stars*

This book has so many beautiful and meaningful quotes.

“I think of all the thousands of billions of steps and missteps and chances and coincidences that have brought me here. Brought you here and it feels like the biggest miracle in the world.”

I won’t say that the plot was original. I have seen that before in a well-known and beloved movie, the “Groundhog Day”.

It is a story of an arrogant and a mean teenage girl who, with her shallow friends, cares only about her popularity, parties, boys and bullying her less popular classmates. I won’t blame her young age and her inexperience for being this cruel to people who surrounded her. This behaviour was driven by the illusion of the power she had as one of the most “popular” girls at school.

“Popularity's a weird thing. You can't really define it, and it's not cool to talk about, but you know it when you see it. Like a lazy eye, or porn.”

Unfortunately, there are so many gruesome stories of bullying and how they have influenced people. This kind of psychological violence has led many people to mental health problems, low self-confidence, suicide and a load of other problems.

However, it is not only a story about bulling. It is a story about life, death and the real values of life. The main character develops throughout the story, improves her mistakes, and by doing that she saves the lives of people who really matters to her. She finds her atonement and she makes the readers to forgive her since she shows the greatest self-denial a person is able to demonstrate.

“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.”

Regarding the plot, it was quite a repetitive one, but given the circumstances it is absolutely understandable. The writing style was beautiful, poetic. However, I found a little bit difficult to memorize all the names, there were so many of them.

I would love to know how the actions of the main character influenced her best friends.
Have they reconsidered their lives?
I hope so.
It would be great if I had a bonus chapter called “19 years later”.

"It's too late,' she says.
And I say, 'It's never too late.”

It is really never too late to be a better version of yourself.
It is never too late to be a person you might have been.
Profile Image for Tatiana.
1,404 reviews11.7k followers
February 10, 2011
"Before I Fall" is Lauren Oliver's debut novel and I think for a first effort it is pretty good.

The premise of the book is not too original - it is a sort of cross between "Mean Girls" and "The Groundhog Day," but Oliver develops it well. Samantha, one of her school's mean girls, relives her last day over and over again, learning more about herself and people around her with each replay. Will she learn enough to make a difference, to change her attitude and her life?

Being a foreigner, I was spared the misfortune of being bullied by mean girls, I don't have any experiences of Samanthas and Lindsays of this world. Therefore I am guessing my opinion of the book is somewhat skewed. I don't hate Samantha and her friends, instead I find this gang amusing in a dysfunctional way and feel sorry for them. Samantha seems to be an extremely unaware person, with low self esteem who doesn't even realize that she is constantly mistreated by her boyfriend, she is directionless and has almost no aspirations beyond getting drunk with her friends and sleeping with her boyfriend. Isn't that a total waste of life?

I don't hate the girls, because there are always those people who lash out at others and bring people down to hide their own insecurities. There is nothing new about it. What I find appalling is the complacency of people around them - their classmates, parents, school officials. How can these 4 teenage girls have a free rein of the school, how can they possibly influence everyone around them? It literally boggles my mind. Why every girl so eagerly calls another one a slut or psycho when she can be at any moment the recipient of the same fate? It this is not a dumb herd mentality, I don't know what is. It is a scary thing in these days of school shootings and student suicides. But I digress...

I liked the book a lot, it is certainly a page turner and Samantha's road to self-awareness is compelling. However the ending is fairly unsatisfying IMO. I expected Samantha to face the consequences of her actions, to find a road to redemption, but I didn't think she would achieve this "redemption" so easily and would also be rewarded with a nice guy in the end. I personally don't think she ever completely owns up to her actions, never fully acknowledges her part in Juliet Sykes' demise and never confronts her friends. The whole time Samantha is more interested in hooking up with Kent than in saving a life or at least pointing to her friends the things she has learned. Whatever "sacrifice" she makes in the end doesn't make a difference. In reality I think everything would be on the same track the next day - bullying, vicious gossiping, taunting of Juliet by Lindsay. So, what is the point of this experience for Samantha? To convince herself she is not so bad after all because she can do a couple of nice things like giving her little sis a necklace and sending Juliet a rose? Not enough IMO.

But regardless of my general disagreement with the outcome of the story, "Before I Fall" is a memorable novel. It is poignant in the portrayal of school bullying, and its effect on people, it is thought provoking and definitely current. I will probably check out Lauren Oliver's future works.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for hayden.
1,062 reviews736 followers
February 22, 2012
Goodreads Exclusive Prelude: If you have not read this, or given it at least four-and-a-half stars, you have no soul.

Oh . . . Oh, my God . . .

Five stars. Five billion stars. Five quadrillion stars. Five infinity stars.

I don't think I'll ever read a book that'll touch me in quite the same way.

A lot of Goodreadsers didn't like Before I Fall because they couldn't relate to it at all and the characters didn't relate to them. Before I Fall did relate to me because the main character, Samantha Kingston, reminded me a lot of my best friend. I know, I know, that sounds bad, but I am in high school, and the things the people do in this book are scarily accurate to what I've come to know is high school over the past year and a half.

I never knew Before I Fall would have such an impact on my life. I saw it at Walmart about two years ago, and I kind of wish I would've gotten it then, because the book is indescribable in mere words. I don't even think any songs could describe it.

The teen voice in the novel is perfect. Oliver says things like I spot Amy Weiss -- probably the biggest gossip in the entire school -- making out with Oren Talmadge in the doorway like she's starving and his mouth is filled with Cheetos, and silly, corny stuff like that that only a high-schooler could say without sounding contrived. The book had some beautiful quotes, too, like Time and space recede and blast away like a universe expanding outward, leaving only darkness and the two of us on its periphery, darkness and breathing and touch.

Oliver wrote a truly beautiful novel that's touched me in more than one dimension. This novel shines through from the core, vulnerable, beautiful, transcendent. Before I Fall is a classic of this generation. It may not be 100 years old, but it has the emotional poignancy that deserves heavy praise. Please, people, if you only read one book in your entire life, let it be this one.
Profile Image for Tiffany.
985 reviews
March 16, 2010
I have no idea how to rate this book. I would say 5 stars to author Lauren Oliver in taking juveniles with a blatant disregard for humanity and turning it into the story of Sam who discovers the importance of humanity. Some of the thoughts that Sam would think as she would pass from one day to the next were beautifully thoughtful causing you to question how you treat and respect the people and things we have. How do we (ourselves) treat individual people? How much affect do we have on the world (people) around us? I think it is a thought provoking book. So I would give the author 5 stars to make us question how we treat others. But all the other parts of the book, in order to get her point across, were rough and depressing to read. I struggled through the majority of the book because of these 4 teenage girls and their behavior to others. There lack of caring was sorrowing for me the reader. The book may have been realistic but it was depressing to read. Thus is the reason for the 1 star rating.
Profile Image for Kristi.
1,192 reviews2,900 followers
July 24, 2010

That would be my one word review for this book... WOW.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I picked this up, and to say that I was utterly unprepared for it's magnificence, would be an understatement. This book evoked such strong emotion. I'm not exaggerating when I say that I was bawling by the end of the story. For me, the stories that awaken your emotions are always the most powerful and memorable. And I don't read many books like that, so when I do, it tends to really stand out.

What's so interesting about this book is that I hated Samantha durning most of the book. For me, I need a personable character, especially the MC. That didn't happen right away with Before I Fall, actually it didn't happen for most of the story.... but I still couldn't put it down.

I thought I had this story figured out, I thought I knew what was going to happen. But I didn't. I could see Samantha changing day by day, but I never anticipated what ultimately she had to do.

Oliver didn't shy away from the authenticity of the teenage persona. It was honest portrayal, which I think teens will be appreciative of. Not to mention it has a very positive message, for everyone.

Cannot wait to read more of Oliver's novels. Unbelievable!
Profile Image for Elle (ellexamines).
1,095 reviews17.7k followers
September 6, 2017
If you look through bad reviews of this book, you'll start to see a common trend: a dislike for Samantha as a protagonist. And it won't be hard to understand why - this book is about a high school mean girl, and she does some incredibly messed up things within these pages. But here's the thing - Samantha's despicable nature is what makes the book so good. Because her story is one of redemption, of working through what she has done and making herself better. Some won't like it, perhaps, but this is undoubtedly one of the best character-driven novels I have ever read.

Samantha's character arc is incredible. I'd go so far to call it one of my all-time favorite arcs. She starts out as a very typical protagonist, one you wouldn't even bat your eyes at, yet she develops into such an incredibly sympathetic character. Even at her moments of imperfection, of blunt evil, even, she wins your empathy because we have been there. The narrative is so effortlessly unbiased towards her - her mistakes are questioned, yet her redemption is given the space it needs.

Even ignoring Samantha, every character feels so real and dimensional. It would've been easy to make Lindsey, Samantha's best friend, into a bland and pathetic mean girl. It would've been easy to make Juliet into a one-off unpopular girl. But Oliver avoids all these traps and makes all her side characters complicated.

I read once that at the edge of a black hole, time stops completely, so if you ever sailed into it, you’d just be stuck there at the lip forever, forever being torn apart, forever dying.

It's important to mention that this book isn't about logic. Lauren Oliver doesn't care how this time loop is happening, or why - she cares about how it's affecting these characters, and that's exactly what's so great about Before I Fall. Every sentence felt like a knife in my heart, making me feel so much for Samantha and for every other character. This book is about self-sacrifice and courage and doing the right thing. It's not preachy, yet it's not sugar coated. Every part of this book is so real, and so true to life, despite the unrealistic plot. You can feel every emotion.

VERDICT: It is incredibly sad that Oliver has come out with so much which wasn't as great as this. However, this novel, her debut, is still absolutely worth reading - it's one of the most impactful books I've ever read. Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Aj the Ravenous Reader.
1,051 reviews1,049 followers
April 12, 2016

This is one of the first YA contemporaries I have read and perhaps for that alone, I’m already giving this five stars. But the truth is, this book well deserves it. Lauren Oliver’s writing usually has this effect on me. [Please see image for illustration.]

"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 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."

This book is one of my most interesting and most unique reads as the story is told in the perspective of a young girl named Sam- mean, petty, selfish and uh, bitchy. I somehow imagine her looking like Amanda Seyfried’s role in Mean Girls,only smarter. ^^

It’s something new to hear the story from the POV of one of the sidekicks of the “Queen Bee” and what’s more surprising is that the narrator seems to be dead and seems to be reliving the day she died seven times. Will she uncover the truth behind this mystery? It’s up to you to find out. ^^

It's also amazing how as the reader, I gradually find myself not only empathizing with Sam but also learning and discovering layers and layers of meaning even in the most minute of details in her life. Reading the book will give you the notion that you're aching over the ending, but in truth, you are aching for the beauty of the story.
Profile Image for LoLo.
271 reviews48 followers
May 29, 2011
But before you start pointing fingers, let me ask you: is what I did really so bad? So bad I deserved to die? So bad I deserved to die like that?
Is what I did really so much worse than what anyone else does?
Is it really so much worse than what you do?
Think about it.

I did think about it. I was forced to think about it for 341 pages. My answer is yes, what you did is worse than what a lot of people do, and what's worse is that at the end of your little week of revelations, I still don't believe you're actually sorry that you tormented a classmate into suicide.

Lauren Oliver makes an okay attempt. Don't be a bully. Don't be a shallow, empty bitch. But she should have chosen a different medium for her message. The entire novel I was wondering "Why Sam?" What can possibly be so different between her and the other three identically empty girls of her group that SHE deserved the chance to "redeem herself" while the other four didn't. Why didn't Lauren Oliver feel the need to have the OTHER girls in the group, and let's face it, the rest of the school that bullied Juliet Sykes to ALSO learn the consequences of their actions.

What's worst of all, to me, is that Sam was once on the receiving end of Lindsay's cruelty. It was not anywhere near the same extent to which Juliet was tormented, but it was still more of an understanding than others. Everytime she made someone terrified they'd even mentioned the name of her boyfriend, or she reminded someone that she shouldn't even know their name or sent Juliet a Valentines rose to remind her that she didn't have friends, or a boyfriend to send one to her. Her defence to all of this is I didn't do anything; I just followed along(pg 135) as if this somehow excuses the years of cruel behaviour to others.

There's also the part on pg 136 where she blames her parents for her being stupid enough to get drunk, get into a car with her friends who are also blind drunk and in no condition to drive, and blame them for the resulting accident. What else could she possibly expect to happen? There's a reason why drunk driving is a crime and high school bodies try to so hard to educate students against such stupidity.

Let's then continue the blame game and say it's all Lindsay's fault. Lindsay didn't do any of those things on her own, she had three people - Sam, Elody and Ally - to spread her rumours, help her create them, to encourage her cruelty and enforce the belief that this is just what happens, SOMEONE has to be picked on, so at the end of the day Juliet should just accept it because it is apparantly the law that someone has to. (This is actually something she says early on in the novel.)

Her apology to Juliet on pg 277 is not at all sincere and heartfelt, and I believe by the end of the book that she still had a long way to go.

I honestly don't understand why Lauren Oliver hasn't made the other three girls go through the same education that Sam does. After all, when Sam is dead the others will still be there, continuing everything they did before without any pause for thought. I also can't understand how she can think it's okay that Sam, knowing she will not survive the night, starts a relationship with Kent, a boy who has been in love with her for years, without consideration for how much it would affect him. This is a strong indication of how selfish Sam still is, and that I don't feel she has learnt what she was meant to, and that therefore the message she's sending is more convoluted that it could be.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews47 followers
October 6, 2020
Before I Fall, Lauren Oliver

"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 it, let it slide like coins through you 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." Before I Fall, Lauren Oliver.

The novel begins when the protagonist, 17-year-old Samantha "Sam" Kingston, is killed in a car accident in her hometown of Ridgeview.

She vividly describes her horrifying and painful death, and what flashes through her mind in those final seconds. However, she realizes that for some reason, she is fated to relive the last day of her life, Friday, February 12, also known as Cupid Day at her high school, over and over, until she gets things right.

عنوانها: «پیش از آنکه بمیرم»؛ «پیش از آنکه بیفتم»؛ «قبل ‌از اینکه بیفتم»؛ نویسنده: لورن اولیور؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش روز هفدهم ماه اکتبر سال 2018میلادی

عنوان: پیش از آنکه بمیرم؛ نویسنده: لورن اولیور؛ مترجم: هما قناد؛ تهران انتشارات میلکان‏‫، چاپ اول تا سوم 1396؛ در 329ص؛ شابک 9786008812463؛ چاپ چهارم تا نهم 1397؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

‬‬عنوان: پیش از آنکه بیفتم؛ نویسنده: لارن الیور؛ مترجم: آرش هوشنگی‌فر؛ قزوین، آزرمیدخت‫، 1396؛ در 517ص؛ شابک 9786007241738؛‬

عنوان: قبل ‌از اینکه بیفتم؛ نوشته: لورن الیور؛ مترجم: زهرا لاری؛ ‏‫ویراستار ناهید علیخانی؛ در 490ص؛ شابک 9786226679107؛

برای «سامانتا کینگ استون» که دانش آموز محبوبِ سال آخر دبیرستان است، روز دوازدهم ماه فوریه (روز کیوپید)، باید روز جشن ولنتاین و دسته گلهای رز؛ و مهمانیهایی باشد، که تنها ویژه ی افراد محبوب هستند؛ به راستی هم دقیقا همینطور است...؛ تا اینکه همان شب، در تصادفی وحشتناک، میمیرد؛ اما....؛ او روز بعد از خواب بیدار میشود؛ به بیان دیگر، «سامانتا» روز آخر زندگی اش را، هفت بار زندگی میکند، تا زمانیکه میفهمد که با ��وچکترین تغییری در رفتارش، میتواند بیش از آن چیزی که خیال میکند، روی دیگران تاثیر بگذارد؛ مهمترین کاریکه او در این روزهای تکرارشونده انجام می‌دهد، تلاش برای دوستی با دختر بیماری ست، که پیش از این در مدرسه، با او رفتار خوبی نداشته‌ است

نقل از آغاز متن: («سامانتا» در یکی از روزهای ماه «فوریه»، با زنگ تلفن از خواب بیدار می‌شود، و به همراه دوستان صمیمی خویش «آلیسون»، «اِلودی» و «لیندزی»، راهی مدرسه می‌شود؛ او قرار است همان شب با دوست‌ پسرش به یک مهمانی شبانه برود، و از این‌رو هیجان‌زده، و تا حدودی نگران و مضطرب است؛ «سامانتا» سر کلاس، یک دسته گل «رُز» به همراه یک یادداشت دریافت می‌کند، اما پس از مدتی متوجه می‌شود، که از سوی یکی دیگر از پسرهای کلاس است...؛»؛ پایان نقل

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 14/07/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Anja H..
760 reviews458 followers
August 25, 2015

Wow. This book is beautiful. I actually really cried when it ended, and that doesn't happen a lot! I don't get why this book doesn't have higher ratings!
I found Before I Fall's concept really unique. It's about a popular girl, Samantha, who dies and gets to relive her last day seven times. This book could've ended up being really cliché but it really wasn't. You really get to see Samantha going through various stages like disbelief, anger, fear, realisation, rebelism and finally acceptance.
I loved Sam's character development throughout the story. Truth be told, at the beginning she was a total bitch, but by reliving her last day seven times, she realizes everything she did wrong and tries, and succeeds, to become a better person in the end by thinking not only of herself but of other people.
I can't possibly explain the millions of feelings this novel has made me feel. This story just felt so real to me, I laughed when Sam laughed, I cried when she cried, I felt hopeless, happy, afraid... It really made me think about my own life and all the things I could do better and the people I could be nicer to and that every day can be your last without you knowing.
This books also deals with bullying, which is something I really hate but I loved reading about it here because it's really been like a slap in the face. This emotional rollercoaster left me completely speechless, I even had trouble sleeping the night after finishing this book because I just kept thinking about it.
I can't believe that I've never read a Lauren Oliver book before, I definitely need more of these in my life!
Profile Image for Maureen.
574 reviews4,185 followers
September 15, 2015
This might be more of a 2.5 but idk.
I might have liked this better if I didn't listen to the audiobook for part of it, but the narrator just gave these girls attitude with their voices and I ended up picturing the characters as that and it was so bad.
Basically all the characters, especially Sam (not as much Kent) annoyed the crap out of me and I didn't really love the repetitiveness of the book (though that is the point). Most of the characters are terrible people. There is a bit of redemption, but for the most part they're just still terrible.
The end was pretty great and I enjoyed the book more as it went on, but the first few chapters were just too much for me.
Profile Image for Charley Cook.
137 reviews706 followers
July 5, 2018
12 hours of a girl learning how not to be the worst person in the world...does she succeed? meh
Profile Image for Nina.
791 reviews283 followers
July 25, 2017
*** 4.5 STARS ***

“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 it, let it slide like coins through you 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.“

If I had to briefly describe this book in a single sentence, I’d describe it as Mean Girls meets something that’ll make you thoroughly think about how you’ve been treating the people around you. But I’m talking about the original Mean Girls movie here, and not about that horrible second part they produced a couple of years later, because “Before I Fall” was truly a great and inspiring book.

“Before I Fall” tells the story of Samantha Kingston who is in a fatal car accident with her friends. But instead of dying she suddenly wakes up in the morning, on the day of the accident, and can relive that day once again. This happens several times over the course of the book and she has the chance to change some of the things that happened to try to make them right again. Sam herself is your typical “mean girl” you know from high school chick flicks but probably also from real life (though I can’t judge that since I grew up in Germany). Over here we have a different school system and the whole popular crowd that “rules” the school thing is nothing I’ve ever heard about over here. However, even I remember a time in-between seventh and ninth grade when I had my group of friends in my class and there were people we were sometimes making fun of and that we excluded from our group. Back then we thought it was funny whilst today most of us, including me, are not proud of how we treated them. But while you’re acting that way you don’t actually realize that you might be hurting someone with your actions and just think that they’ll forget about it as fast as you do which they don’t. Instead your actions might leave deeper wounds than you can imagine; wounds that might never fully heal again. “Before I Fall” is trying to show what those actions can do to victims of bullying and how oblivious the offenders are to the impact of their actions.

From my younger sister, I know that even at my old school, bullying has become a bit of a normal thing again. Kids these days are losing respect for not only adults but also for people their age. Back when I was in 8th grade, we read “13 Reasons Why” which is also dealing with bullying and the consequences it can have. I remember that it actually made some people think about things they’ve done in their life and led them to trying to make things right again before it might’ve been too late. I think “Before I Fall” is a book that could provoke the same feelings in some people and would also be a good book to read and talk about in schools. At first, I thought it wouldn’t be gripping enough to also be interesting to younger readers that might have to read it for school. Reliving the same day over and over again to me sounded like a plot line that could fast become repetitive and boring; but Lauren Oliver managed to change things up in such ways that every single day was interesting in its own way. She changed things that I just didn’t expect her to change at all which even made me laugh out loud a couple of times even though the chapters each ended with the same horrible event happening; it was just always a little different from how it was in the previous chapter. The book also shows the reader how complex the web of problems is which Sam and her friends have spun with their actions without even realizing it. Every time I thought I’d finally understood someone’s story, and knew what Sam had to change to make things right, I was immediately proven wrong again. Most of the times things aren’t just made good again with a simple apology. “Before I Fall” shows you this in a very gripping and moving way. It’s a very realistic book which is especially shown by the ending of it which indeed makes one gulp and be silent for a couple of minutes.

All in all, “Before I Fall” is a great book that shines a light on a very important topic. It’ll make you think about how you’ve treated the people you’ve encountered in your life and reading it may be an eye-opening experience for some people. Lauren Oliver has a great writing style and “Before I Fall” is a book you can easily read in less than a day which also makes this book perfect for younger audiences. 4.5 out of 5 stars for this book!
Profile Image for Laini.
Author 43 books38.1k followers
August 10, 2010
Wow. On *day 7* and loving this book so much. I want to slurp it up like a noodle.

Finished: terrific; amazing teen voice and utterly believable characters -- the "mean girls" made, somehow, relatable! The story is so bittersweet, though I wished ...


... for a different ending for the characters (of COURSE), as a reader, I found the ending very powerful. The cumulative grief of those left behind -- left entirely to the reader's imagination -- is haunting.

And how wonderful is Kent? Love him. My new book boyfriend :-)
Profile Image for ♥ℂĦℝΪՖƬΪℕÅ.
230 reviews3,935 followers
March 6, 2018
3.5 Time Loop ★'s

“The last laugh, the last cup of coffee, the last sunset, the last time you jump through a sprinkler, or eat an ice-cream cone, or stick your tongue out to catch a snowflake. You just don't know.”

I was really looking forward to reading this, because I absolutely love Lauren Oliver's Delirium trilogy. It was a pretty decent read, no it wasn't the best and it could have been better. I am glad that I read it, but it's just gonna be a one time read for me. Some of it was a bit slow and I had a hard time staying focused at times. Before I Fall was a bit repetitive, the constant re-looping and basically reading the same thing over and over again got a little tiresome. And yeah, I know the premise is that Samantha is stuck in a Groundhog Day Loop, in which the character is caught in a time loop, doomed to repeat the same day over and over, but still. I did enjoy it all the same :) It does make you think though about the way you treat others so that's a plus. I also think this would be a really good book for teens to read.

*Also Before I Fall was made into a movie and surprisingly, I liked it a lot more than the book. So if you have yet to see it I suggested you do :)

Time repeats

Meet the mean girls

The girl they bully

Profile Image for Christy.
3,915 reviews33k followers
June 26, 2017
4 ish stars!
“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 it, let it slide like coins through you 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.”

This book was intense, emotional, and frustrating- all in equal measure. There are parts I loved, and moments I want to give 5+ stars, but there were other parts that had me itching to quit, and made me want to rate the book a 3, so I'll settle for a 4. Samantha is one of those characters that I hated at first, but grew to love. Her growth over the 'seven days' in this book was astounding. I am not a fan of the way it ended, and I was actually kind of surprised it took that turn...

I listened to the audio book and enjoyed the narration. I hate it when I'm listening to a book set in high school and the narrator sounds older, so that's a plus! This is a book that gave me all the feels. It's a book that made me think of the way I live my day to day life, and how the choices I make daily can effect other people. Changing one thing in your day can change everything. I'm excited to see the movie, and I'm sure I'll cry all over again watching it!
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