Before I Die

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I read a few reviews about the book Before I Die by Jenny Downham and it called out to me.  The story is told by Tessa a 17 year Brit dying of leukemia.  She decides to make a list of the 10 things she must do before she dies.  She lives with her father who has literally committed himself to helping her through this and her younger typical 12 year old brother and her estranged mother who shows up on occasion.  The list is what you’d expect from a teenager.  Things that you are finally old enough to try and experience as you become a young adult.  Sex, drugs, love, etc. 

The book doesn’t promote sex with anyone but sex with love which I liked.  The differences between the two are obvious as the story unfolds.  Slowly but surely Tessa, checks off the items on the list.  You get to undergo each one with her. The book is a really quick read.  I almost read it in one might but decided sleep might be a good option and to finish the rest of the book the next night.  The story made me laugh and cry.  Heartbreaking yet full of life.  Makes the reader realize how life is worth living to the fullest, any day. 

I am definitely giving this book to Jessica and Emily to read.  It is a great book for a teenager but I loved it as an adult.  Worth the read.  A really beautiful book.