Number of pages: 470
Number of times read (including the time before this review): 1
Rating (out of five stars): 3
I won a signed copy of this book in an Indigo Teen Twitter giveaway, but as always my opinions are honest.
There’s nothing terribly offensive about this book. It’s your typical YA contemporary book, filled with epiphanies, drinking, and bullying. Where I take issue with this is mostly because of personal reasons, so this is going to be a very personal review. For those about to click off this review, if you like really long contemporary YA books, you are sure to like Before I Fall, so if you haven’t read it already, and you fit this description, I recommend you check it out.
For those who don’t know, I was bullied from grade 1 to grade 9 (age 6-14). I also nearly committed suicide in grade 6 because of it, so you might say that I’m not really a fan of bullying. While I don’t wish any bullies (including fictional ones) any ill, I don’t exactly like them, so reading the thoughts of one wasn’t the best experience.
It’s not like I learned something I didn’t already know. I know my tormentors don’t remember the insults they threw at me despite remembering them myself. I know bulling stems from the bully’s insecurities, despite it creating insecurities in the victim that would not have otherwise existed. However, knowing those things doesn’t make it hurt any less when they’re confirmed.
I think the worst part is that Sam is championed for changing and becoming a better person in the end, and maybe it’s my unique point of view, but I didn’t see this epic character change. I saw the same selfish person from start to finish, she just happens to have also saved a life at the end. Sam doesn’t do what she does at the end because she became a better person; she does it to get herself into heaven.
Overall, I really should not have read this book, but it still earns 3 stars out of 5.