Saturday, October 9, 2010

Take a Second Look: Booktalk 1

Samantha – also called Sam --  is one of the most popular girls at her high school, and she’s part of a tightly knit group of four girls. It’s Cupid Day, the day at their high school where the students get and receive roses with notes from friends and admirers. It’s a fairly normal day, with one exception: Sam dies, and I’m not giving away the ending, because it’s not really the ending. Even though she’s dead, Sam wakes up the next day – and it’s Cupid Day again. This time Sam makes some minor adjustments in how her day goes, because she knows full well how it ends. And she starts noticing little things that she hadn’t noticed before. Then she starts making some changes in what she says, who she interacts with, and ways she treats people. Little things: like eating lunch in the bathroom with a unpopular girl, or giving roses to another girl who is called “Psycho.” Other little things: like noticing her boyfriend Rob is sort of a jerk, and that another guy, a non-popular friend from her childhood, is actually the most interesting guy around. Sam gets to replay her day over several times, and the more she does it, the more she realizes exactly how important words and actions are, even to the point of determining whether another student lives or dies. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver.

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. 470 p. Harper, 2010. Booktalk to high school.

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