How easy it is to start off down the same road you always take and wind up somewhere new…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 above quote pretty much summarizing the idea of the book. When I first started reading this book, I was afraid I wasn’t going to like it. A popular girl dies and she keeps reliving the same day trying to figure out how to make it stop. I told myself this story is going to be predictable and the author is going to try to make me feel sorry for this “mean girl” which I don’t think she deserves in my initial analysis – she doesn’t deserve to die but I don’t think she has right to past by death when no one else gets a freebie when their times comes…or do we? However, the book was surprising in many aspects.
First, the author did an amazing job making you feel like you were back in high school. So amazing it was scary at times how real it felt with all the cruel name calling and mean jokes. My school was different from the book in many aspects but let’s face the facts – kids are cruel everywhere. My two personal favorite creative but cruel nicknames in the book were:
Sophomores (Lindsay calls the s’mores because they’re always stuck together and more than two will get you sick) and
Lindsay calls them [this group of girls] the Pugs: pretty from far away, ugly up close.
Second, I thought reliving the same day again and again would get boring but it didn’t. In fact, the author made all the character more round and dimensional by doing this. You got to experience the same day from multiple vantage points. Each day, you discover more people’s secrets and learn more about the people surrounding Sam. Some of the secrets are predictable and some aren’t as much. I keep wondering when reading the book if Sam was in a comma, in purgatory, dreaming, hell (and doing penance for her sin committed), in heaven going through something like The Five People You Meet in Heaven scenarios or if she was being given a fresh start to fix stuff and appreciate her life. Read the book and then we can talk.
Third, the author has a beautiful, simple way of explaining profound stuff that just makes sense. There are so many beautiful quotes I can't put them all in this review.
Here’s one of the things I learned that morning: if you cross a line and nothing happens, the line loses meaning. It’s like that old riddle about a tree falling in a tree falling in a forest, and whether it makes a sound if there’s no one around to hear it. You keep drawing a line farther and farther away, crossing it every time. That’s how people end up stepping off the edge of the earth.
Some readers may say the protagonist growth and develop is too quick but I think death changes and ages even the most popular and carefree teenage girl especially when it is your own.