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Before I Fall
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Before I Fall

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3.91  ·  Rating details ·  257,277 Ratings  ·  19,023 Reviews
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
...more
Paperback, Enhanced Edition, 470 pages
Published October 25th 2010 by HarperCollins (first published March 2nd 2010)
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♥ Charlotte ♥ I feel like the author was using Vicky as a comparison, to show how Sam and her friends weren't just rude to Juliet. Vicky actually wasn't that…moreI feel like the author was using Vicky as a comparison, to show how Sam and her friends weren't just rude to Juliet. Vicky actually wasn't that influential to the plot, but was only there to add a dimension so in the beginning, you see Sam is a bit guilty and therefore has the potential to change into who she is at the end of the book. (less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Niki I always thought the mention of butterflies in the book was related to the "butterfly effect"--the idea that one little thing can change everything in…moreI always thought the mention of butterflies in the book was related to the "butterfly effect"--the idea that one little thing can change everything in a huge way. Her friend Ally also mentions she heard once that a burp can cause a thousand monarchs to take off halfway around the world (very much paraphrasing here; I couldn't find the quote online), but Sam refers back to this a few times throughout the book.

“It amazes me how easy it is for things to change, how easy it is to start off down the same road you always take and wind up somewhere new. Just one false step, one pause, one detour, and you end up with new friends or a bad reputation or a boyfriend or a breakup. It's never occurred to me before; I've never been able to see it. And it makes me feel, weirdly, like maybe all of these different possibilities exist at the same time, like each moment we live has a thousand other moments layered underneath it that look different.”

The book is about choice and consequence, and how huge of an impact your actions may have on someone (i.e. Juliet) without you even realizing the severity. When she saves Juliet at the end of the book, death no longer scares her because she knows she died with purpose, and she is no longer haunted by the mistakes she made in her life or the hurt she caused people. So in that sense, she is freed. (less)

Community Reviews

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Kat Kennedy
Dec 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
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 hurri
...more
Emily May
Sep 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
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 c
...more
Heather
Sep 09, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
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 c ...more
Penny
Feb 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Penny by: presentinglenore.blogspot.com
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 b
...more
Bonnie
Mar 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
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).
...more
Zoë
Dec 15, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5/5

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
...more
Elle
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 t
...more
Raeleen Lemay
Mar 10, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf, young-adult
I honestly wanted to finish this book so it could go towards my 2012 reading challenge, but it was JUST SO BORING. I really couldn't care less what happened to the characters, and they were all so bitchy that I just couldn't stand reading about them anymore. I'm sure this Samantha girl will have some epiphany towards the end where she realizes that the way she's been treating people is wrong, then she'll finally move on and actually die like she should have a while ago. I don't see the point in ...more
Karolina
Jul 31, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya

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 thinkin
...more
Annalisa
Mar 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mild language, sexual content, and drug use
Recommended to Annalisa by: Penny
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 ...more
Evgnossia O'Hara
May 07, 2018 rated it liked it
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,
...more
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
 :

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
...more
Tatiana
Mar 19, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tatiana by: Heather, Ryan, Penny
Shelves: 2010, ya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
karen
Mar 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: why-yes-i-ya
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 a
...more
hayden
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 Kingsto
...more
Tiffany
Mar 10, 2010 rated it did not like it
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 ...more
Christine Delilah (Maramochabooks)
Update: Since it's going to be a movie I decided to re-visit my review and share my own story.

“I know some of you are thinking maybe I deserved it.
But before you start pointing fingers, 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.”

./

Sam's got everything she's ever hoped for: looks, popularity, the perfect boyfriend, and everyon
...more
Kristi
WOW.

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 in
...more
Aj the Ravenous Reader
*Reread*

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.
...more
Maureen
Sep 06, 2015 rated it it was ok
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,
...more
Nina
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone!!!
*** 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 thi
...more
Anja
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
*5 FALLING STARS*

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
...more
♥Christina
Feb 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
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
...more
Laini
Aug 09, 2010 added it
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 ...


[SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT:]





... 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
...more
Daiane
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray thee, Lord, my soul to keep.
If I should die before I wake,
I pray thee, Lord, my soul to take.


I'm confused about my feelings right now. I have nothing to say and so many words about this book at the same time.

Maybe when you die time folds in on you, and you bounce around inside this little bubble forever. Like the after-death equivalent of the movie Groundhog Day. It’s not what I imagined death would be like—not what I imagined would come afterward—but then a
...more
Christy
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 th
...more
Ash
Mar 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is a hard book to rate. It’s in a whole different realm and I’m not sure what to do. It’s special. Not like in a good or bad way, but in a way that it’s different. You can’t compare it to anything else because…it isn’t like anything else. Yeah, I know I’m making a lot of sense. One thing that this does is make you feel and it makes you think.

Quick Overview: Samantha Kingston has everything a girl could want. She’s popular, has a hunky popular boyfriend, great friends, and there seems to be
...more
Lorenzio Phillibuster Fireworks
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
...more
Elise (TheBookishActress)
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 ...more
Lilou
Feb 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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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 ...more
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“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.”
4007 likes
“So many things become beautiful when you really look.” 3197 likes
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