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Before I Fall
Transcript of Before I Fall
Author- Lauren Oliver
Number of Pages- 470
Publisher- Harper Collins
Date Published- 2010 Literary Elements Main Character-Samantha Kingston is one of the most popular seniors at her school. She does what she pleases with no heed for there are no consequences. Only her friends and boyfriend matter to her, but that all changes on February 12. Coming home from a party she's in a car accident that instantly kills her. Sam has to live the same day over again, 7 times in fact. During this period of time she realizes what life really means, how precious it is, who she really was, and who she was meant to be. Important Characters-
Lindsay is one of Sam's best friends, and in a way is the leader of their group of friends. She's fearless and has always been popular. She tries to act perfect, but behind everything she's just like anybody else. Lindsay made Sam the person she is. Elody is also one of Sam's best friends, along with Ally. You don't really get to see a lot of who they are throughout the book. They go along with what Lindsay says, not because they're trying to suck up but because they don't want to get in a fight. Rob is Sam's boyfriend. He's everything she always wanted and she really thought she loved him, but as she relives the same day she realizes he's fake. All he wanted was to date one of the most popular girls in school.
Kent is one of Sam's oldest friends. He's goofy and kind, and he was there for her when she needed him the most, but once she became friends with Lindsay she forgot about him. As she relives Febuary 12th she sees what she's been missing without him. Juliet is an outcast. She has no friends, is called a freak/phsyco,
and on Febuary 12th she commits suicide. Juliet plays a big part in Sam's life, yet she doesn't realize it until the very end. The setting is in Connecticut, where Sam lives. Plot elements-
1) Exposition: Sam is frst introduced by
explaining that when you die your whole life does not flash before your eyes as you are told. She tells us how she thinks back to third grade when, an insignificant character, Vicky Hallinan got picked on and how she watched but did nothing. This shows how she always goes with the crowd and never sticks up for others. In the begining she says that it's just the way of life and we have to deal with it. 2) Conflicts :
a. Sam struggles with being her own person. She's always been a follower rather than a leader. Sam's never fully understood the meaning of everything she has, and instead takes it for granted. Throughout the book she does realize how important everyone is, and who is worth fighting for.
b. Sam's never seen how her actions can affect the people around her, but as she relives the same day over and over again she sees how every action changes the future. 3) February 12th starts like any other day. Samantha Kingston declines breakfast, as always, and doesn't tell her parents goodbye as she heads out the door to meet Lindsay, who is waiting to drive her to school. Everything feels the same. There's fresh bagels and coffee waiting for her in the car, and they pick up Elody as always. February 12th is the day Sam and her friends have all been waiting for- Cupid Day. The point is to see how many flowers you can get at school, as if this is supposed to boost your popularity level. Sam gets many, as always, but is appalled when she receives one from her former ex-best friend, Kent. That night they all head over to Ally's house to get ready for Kent's party. Sam is excited to meet her boyfriend, Rob, there, but when she arrives he's already too drunk to process anything. Annoyed Sam leaves him there defensless. Then the strangest thing happens. Juliet shows up, and gives the most popular girls in school a peice of her mind. Dismayed Lindsay starts screeching "phsyco", and everyone follows. A little bit later Sam and her friends leave. Lindsay's driving, although she's known to be impulsive while she drives, and for a split second when her head is away from the road the car flips over violently, killing Sam painfully. Sam wakes up hot and sweaty, and out of breath. All she can think of is the party, of her friends, and the accident. She finally comes to the conclusion that it was just a horrible nightmare, and tries to push it aside. But as the day goes on Sam can't help but feel she's already lived this day. She brushes it aside and claims it's just deja vu, until she get's to Kent's party, where she realizes everything falls like dominoes. Sam wakes up the same way as before, but this time she conciders that both accidents were real and she didn't make it. The only problem now is, is that she doesn't know what to do. Is there no way out? Should she even try? That day Sam has her mom drive her and goes to school late. She awkwardly thanks her mom, something she only does on birthdays or Christmas. Then and there she vows there will be no accident tonight. She talks her friends out of going to Kents party, and instead they sleep over at Ally's. In the middle of the night Ally's mother wakes all of them up to tell them the shocking news of how Juliet commited suicide. Everyone's shaken up, except for Lindsay. She claims that it was only a matter of time before Juliet did it anyway. Suddenly Sam remembers something, and when everyone is asleep Sam goes down to the basement and pulls up Ally's old yearbooks. There she discovers that Juliet and Lindsay used to be best friends for years, and then one year they just stopped. Nothing adds up. Lindsay was the one who started all of the rumors about Juliet, the one who despised her. What had happened between them? That night Sam's sure she'll wake up on February 13th.
This is the forth day Sam has woken up on February 12th. When she realizes that she's still stuck in this loophole, this inbetween stage, she's furious. She can't do anything to get out of this cycle because she's dead, therefore decideds there are no consiquences for her. She's no longer frightened at Lindsay but annoyed. If it hadn't been for her and her impulsive driving she'd still be alive. At school she ditches her friends and skips four periods. Sam does end up, however, going to the party. When Juliet comes Sam breaks down. She needs someone to comfort her, but all of her friends are gone, and Rob is too drunk. Kent finds her and stays with her for the rest of the night. The next day Sam's glad that she can just start all over; she doesn't want her friends mad at her anymore. That day Sam does not go to school, instead she stays home and imagines everything that she wants to do in her life. She takes her younger sister, Izzy, to her favorite hideout at goose point. Sam wonders, as she wathces Izzy play, what she'll be like when she grows up. She feels regret that she's never going to see Izzy grow up to be the amazing person that she knows she will be; a person so much better than herself. That night she sneeks out to go see Juliet because she believes she's her ticket out, but she's not home. Sam does what she promiced herself she wouldn't do, and she goes to the party. Unfortunately she's just missed Juliet, but she doesn't give up that easily. Sam finally finds her next the road, and realizes what she's about to do. Juliet is going to commit suicide by being hit by a car. Sam tries to persuade her, but in the end Juliet jumps and is hit by lindsay's car. Elody was in the passanger seat and is killed instantly, just as Sam was. That night Sam spends the night at Kents house, hopeful for a new day. Today Sam wakes up hopeful she's going to save herself, but before that happens she wants to make everything right. Sam sends a dozen roses to Juliet for Cupid's Day. Everything goes as planned, until the party. When Sam spots Juliet she grabbs her and pulls her off to the side, trying to talk her out of her maddness. Juliet explains to her how her and Lindsay used to be friends, the ones who did everything together, until Juliet found out a secret about her that Lindsay wasn't sure she'd keep. That's when all of the rumors started, that way nobody would believe Juliet, but she would never have told. In the end Juliet does jump, but not in front of Lindsay's car as before. It was never revenge, as Sam had thought, it was just a coinsidence. Climax-This is day seven, the last day of Febraury 12th.
Before Sam wakes up she dreams that she's flying, not falling as previous dreams, and it was only dark because her eyes were closed. She realizes that she can't save herself as she thought, but she has to let go- that will save her. Falling action-
On the seventh day Sam decides to break up with Rob and go out with Kent because he truely gets her. She has the best day with her friends than she has in a long time. At the party Sam follows Juliet to the street and just as she's about to jump Sam takes her place. As she's dying (for the second time) she hears all of her friends voices around her, including Kent, and Juliet who's asking why she did it. Resolution-
When Sam dies she doesn't see her life flash before her eyes, but instead she sees her greatest hits- everything she wants to be remembered for. She's not scared, but welcomes it. We all have something waiting on the other side for us, and we shouldn't be scared as we all are deep down inside, yet we're that way because it's unfamiliar to us. We all have to find out for ourselves. Review-
I would definetely recommend this book for others to read. It reminds us how we take everything for granted, when really it can all be taken away in a blink of an eye. Before I Fall is enticing and you'll become hooked by the first sentence. I'd recommend this book for anyone who's read Delirium, also by Lauren Oliver, and Thirteen Reasons Why. Also this book is for anyone who likes mystery and fiction. Books By Lauren Oliver By:Makenzie Smith