Before I Die

Before I Die

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Before I Die 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 490 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just read this book and am in complete awe of the author's talent. I saw this book in the bookstore and was intrigued by the title and it's placing in the young adult section. I started thinking; is this really written from the perspective of a dying person, a dying young person? I picked it up and read the first few sentences for the blurb (I don't like to know too much about a novel before I read it) and it confirmed my initial suspicion. I simply had to read it.
Downham is amazing. She has a beautiful, lyrical voice that cuts to the heart of the matter. It's heartfelt without being melodramatic. As I was reading I was laughing, crying, and laughing again. Even though it's a tough subject matter, it's an incredibly uplifting book. A book that makes you feel more alive than you ever have, a book that makes you reflect on your life and the purpose of it. Having read the book, I am feeling full of optimism about tomorrow, about the promise that it holds and the things I want to achieve. I cannot emphasise enough how great this book is. If you're looking for a read that will shake you from the complacency of life and make you take stock, make you feel, and make you want to bow down in awe at someone's talent, then Before I Die by Jenny Downham is a must read.
Awesomeness1 More than 1 year ago
This book is real and emotionally enrapturing. Downham holds nothing back as she describes a teenager in her final days. Its all in here: sex, drugs, illness, and death. But that doesn't keep the novel from being uplifting. Overall, its a tribute to life, and how little we have of it. The book itself is written marvelously. Its simple and real, with splashes of beautiful prose thrown in. I loved it, and I understand its not for everyone, but I fully recommend it.
njisamazing678 More than 1 year ago
This book is something that changed my life. Many say that, but this book really did make me rethink how I lived. When I finished, it made me want to write a bucket list myself! The sarcastic tone that sixteen-year-old Tessa spoke and the extreme situations she got into made me laugh and cringe throughout the book. The edgy tone and content made me respect the book even more. Jenny Downham portrayed exactly how I believe I would feel if put into that situation. She discusses many contreversial subjects that teenagers go through. Anywhere from sex, drugs, and friend, she hits the real view of a rebellious teen to a tee. I find I am most interested in racy books that suprise and exhilarate me, and this book did just that. As most know the ending when they begin this book, I expected it, yet found myself crying anyways. The details Downham put into it made me picture every movement and character. I fell in love with Adam, even though I did not like him at the beginning. He brother Cal made me laugh and tear up with his naive honestly with his older sister. I could understand where her father came from with the way he treated his only daughter and her mother made me crazy at times, but she was an important part to understanding how Tessa acted. Zoey was hard to understand at first, but I felt that after Zoey got pregnant, we saw the real side of her. All and all, I believe this book is one of the best I have ever read. It honestly inspired me to rethink my life and how I want to live it.
Ashley5390 More than 1 year ago
Grab this book and a box of Kleenex (no bookmark needed). A very good, inspiring, and real book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story of Tessa and her life with cancer. she only has weeks to live before she dies and she made a list of things to do before she dies and the first item on the list is sex. at first it was hard to like Tessa her motives we're selfish but more along her journey she meets Adam and this is when her story becomes more meaningful. it show's how life will always go on even when she is dead. This book I recommend to anyone and everyone its shows the real meaning living your life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Before I Die is a beautiful novel. The characters are so relatable and don't feel like characters and this story never feels like a story. The whole book is about Tessa, a girl recently diagnosed with cancer who now knows for a fact that her treatment will stop and she will not get better. Basically Tessa is on her death bed. Before she dies she has a list of things she wants to do before she dies that aren¿t all exactly pleasant such as her number one wish losing her virginity. Although this seemed as though it would be fun it turns out to be quite the opposite but Tessa keeps going with her list and the end completes the novel with extreme sadness but dignity. This novel was great.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My sister went into the grocery store(to get one thing) as I was nearing the end, (since I couldn't put it down) I started balling crying and my sister came out and my eyes were already so red and it was just simply an amazing book. Good for teens with context etc.
Klondon More than 1 year ago
This is such a fantastic book. I'm a survivor of cancer so I really enjoyed reading this book. The main character I felt was a lot like myself which was such a nice element to this story. I find the characters amazing. I felt very emotional about Tessa and I must say I did cry more than once! This is a definite book that can be read over and over again. I recommend it to everyone that loves to read as much as I do.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read the book and it is amazing my mom cryed reading if u every get a chanse to read it u should
ReviewerMar More than 1 year ago
I had been wanting to read Before I die for a long time, and then I just stumbled upon it in the library, and I just had to read it. So I did. And I loved it, and cried a lot. Just like most people who have read this book probably have. Before I die is not your stereotype sad story. The list made it a unique book. What would you want to do before you died? Tessa tries to do everything on the list. The list becomes her life, as far as she still has a life. But there are some things on the list that will be hard to accomplish. Love and be loved. It seems so hard. With the last power she has inside of her, Tessa completes the list. Some things are hilarious to read about, like the only-say-yes day she had, while others seemed impossible, like bring back together her parents. As I turned the pages of this book, I became fully aware of what was happening. Every page meant one page closer to Tessa's death. Even a miracle couldn't make her stay alive anymore. No-one should die at that age, or earlier. Tessa is one of the greatest characters ever. She has cancer but can still be happy, and she can still find the power to hang on to her life, even if that power is the list. Tessa was super realistic, and at one point in her process of accepting her own death she decided to stop giving a f*ck about her own life. And that's what made her so special. Then there was the YA-stereotype mean best friend. She didn't really interest me. And there was the Boyfriend, who was a-dor-able, he was so caring and protective, just like Tessa's dad. And the most amazing character from this book was Tessa's brother. He seemed to have accepted his sister's death, and was joking about it all the time, but when she was about to die he revealed his real feelings. That made me cry so much! Jenny Downham has a great writing style, and the pace of this story was great, too. I just wish the book wasn't so short... A recommender for every teen who likes sad tragic stories, or just wants to see how amazing his/her own life is.
Rickilynne More than 1 year ago
Im 15 years old and my librian told me about this book in our High School library and I was the first one to read it. Its an amazing story about life, love, and death....by the end of the book I was in tears during Social Studies class. Its for anyone boy or girl teen or adut...
books-then-food More than 1 year ago
Wow. This book is really fantastic. It sounds like its your average teen book love/death/sob story, but its so incredibly well written and eye opening. The main character has had cancer for four years, and has decided to stop treatment. She experiences an extreme range of emotions, all clearly written and totally believable, from anger to joy, sorrow to boredom. At times the characters are difficult to like, but there experiences always come through as authentic and sincere. This book opened my eyes to aspects of dying (and living) I'd never considered before. Though the end is emotional, its an uplifting story that won't leave you depressed for weeks. Can't reccomend this book enough, a definite must read!
bookworm297 More than 1 year ago
WOW doesn't even cover this book....real...deep...personal...struggle....love....trust....obligation...absolutely life changing...... This book makes you appreciate life way more than you did the following day....It makes you believe that you can truly do anything and everything that you want to because you never know when you'll depart from this Earth....Tessa's strength, will to keep going, and just overall determination to live her life despite what the doctors told her, despite her so-called limitations, and despite people's interpretations of how she looked and acted. She had the love of her family, her best friend Zoey, and her love Adam which helped her through this time. In Adam, she found that people really can stick by you and truly love you aside from just pity and guilt. Adam was crazy about her and didn't care that she had cancer which is amazing...you don't find many genuine people like that these days....the best friend Zoey is absolutely honest and definitely won't apologize for it which is great and Tessa needed someone like that in her life so nothing's sugarcoated...her dad truly amazing and strong to stick by his daughter through this traumatic years and her bro Cal is annoying but cared alot and loved Tess so much and as for her mom....well I'm glad she grew up and realized that family is the most important thing.... I recommend this book to anybody and everybody because it changes the way you look at the world around you and how you live each day and not take one moment for granted and take risks and just live carefree and do everything and anything you want because all the opportunities are out there and all you have to do is take them...so inspiring....read it now!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was truly amazing!It seemed as if it was written by someone who actually lived through this. It made me cry as well, and I dont think that any other book has. I, too, read this book in only 3 days! I like books about real life and if you do to then you should READ IT. I'm glad I did. I think that I will think better about life now. It was the best book I'd read in a while and it just makes me want to search for more books that are just as good, or even better (:
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just fininshed reading it and its is one of the best books I have ever read!! I was crying for like the last 50-60 pages. it was so sad but I'm glad I read it and I dont think I could ever forget this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a writer myself, I am extremely critical of the books I read. But aside from writing, I'm also a teenager looking for a good book. This book was extremely blunt and well- written. The author spares noone and dives right into the story, as the main character, Tessa, does herself. At first, I found it harsh and upsetting, but it began to make me think like Tessa. I notice the details and little things that make me happy. We've seen this story before, A walk to remember, etc. But this was different... it pleased me both as a teenager and a writer.
Thomas Turner More than 1 year ago
It's a very interesting book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love how we get to see howbflawed he is. That he has real insecurities and fears. This makes him more human. Many people are complaining about the book but it is what was advertised. The story from his point of view. I love that there is no inner goddess!!!!!!!!!!!!!
NinaNicole More than 1 year ago
I thought it was a good book. The build up was a little long and some realtionships seemed rushed. But all in all, a good read. Definitely passed the time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An experience of insight and heartbreak...grab the tissues
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The name is Now is good. Check on youtube or netflix. It is really good and it os exactually like the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
slow at bits, but overall a captivating, lyrical and at times darkly comedic novel
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Made into a movie with Dakota Fanning! Well worth the read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book shows the reality of life, and it is truly inspiring. The young girl stands on the edge of her life and she still stands to achieve the last she can do. Amazing to watch her down the road and find the last things in life that we must appreciate today. A good read.