Review–Before I fall by Lauren Oliver

January 10, 2011 § 1 Comment

Before I Fall
by Lauren Oliver (Author), Sarah Drew (Narrator)

  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 12 hour(s) and 25 min.
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: Harper Audio (March 2, 2010)
  • Language: English


This was a great audio to listen to. The narrator, Sarah Drew was wonderfully expressive and really evoked the emotional turmoil that the MC, Sam was feeling throughout. It didn’t seem like 12 hours, I was so engaged in the story that I didn’t want it to end. Sarah Drew did an amazing job with the narration of this, really making me feel as if I were hearing Sam tell the story.
Before I Fall is a story about love, loss, hope, friendship, and forgiveness. Sam, killed in a car crash after a party one night, finds that she is living that same day over and over again. What I interpreted that she was doing was going through the 5 stages of grief with each day. At first, she couldn’t believe it and pretended it wasn’t true, that she must have been dreaming. But as she comes to realize that it wasn’t a dream, she is then forced to really take a look at her life and who she is.
I didn’t like Sam at the beginning but I don’t think I was meant to. I was fascinated by her and her friends though, the same way I’m fascinated with the characters on Gossip Girl. She and her group of friends are shallow, immature little twits at first glance but as the story progresses, I was able to see them a little differently. It was a really interesting and realistic look inside a clique of “mean girls” and some of the reasons why they act the way they do, without in any was excusing it or justifying it.
I loved watching the way Sam grew throughout the story, really coming to realize the truths about herself, her friends, and her life. She also took a long hard look at the boy she thought she loved, and ended up finding the boy who had been there all along but she hadn’t bothered to notice.  It was a beautifully written touching story about what things are really important and what we want to be remembered for.
The only negative things I have to say about Before I Fall is that I would have liked to have seen a little more focus on Sam’s relationship with her family, it was odd how little they seemed to factor into the story, other than a few minutes with her sister. Also, some of the almost poetic phrasing didn’t really fit my idea of how a teenager like Sam would think. Other than that, this was a wonderful story that I would highly recommend to anyone who, like me, prefers a flawed main character and has a box of tissue close by.
Rated 4 – Excellent read!.
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