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September 23, 2013

ReaLITy Reads: Harman’s Response to BEFORE YOU GO by James Preller

Realistic fiction is a unique genre in YA because it illustrates challenging situations you may not have personally experienced but connects you to emotions you have. Whether it's uncovering life-altering secrets, making a tough choice, coming to terms with your sexuality or finding your voice, realistic fiction addresses themes relevant to real life. To highlight some of their fantastic realistic fiction, Macmillan established their ReaLITy program. Our Teen Board decided to check out these reads and respond to them in this blog series.

Which ReaLITy Reads book did you read?

I read BEFORE YOU GO by James Preller.

In a couple of sentences, how would you describe this book to your friends?

It teaches you how to cope with loss or death. It teaches you that life goes on and time will help you heal, and no matter how hard it hits you or how hard it seems to find the will to get up in the morning, you will always get up and learn to finally get up and live again.

If you had to pick three words to describe the book, what would they be?

Three words that definitely describe this book would be intriguing, inspiring and heart-warming.

What was your favorite part?

This whole book was amazing but my favorite part would have to be the accident, not because I find it fun to read about, but because it’s the major point in the book, and it just hits you. The whole time you’re reading this, you know that the accident is going to happen and that you are going to read about. The thing is when you do reach that point, it still hits you as a surprise. You feel as if you are actually there, that you are actually seeing the accident and hearing the screech of the tires. You feel it all.

Did you have a favorite character and if so, what did you like about him/her?

I don’t have a favorite character because I feel as if every character is important to the story, even the ones that have already passed on or that next door neighbor that the character sees watering his or her plants. Every character is crucial to the story, and if you took even one of those characters out, the book would almost be incomplete.

What did you take away from reading it?

I definitely feel different about loss and how to cope with it. I know many people who have lost a loved one; I’ve lost a loved one, and you feel as if the world just came to a stop and that you can’t move on from the death of that person. But this book shows you that the world doesn’t stop. It keeps spinning --- people keep laughing, working and just simply enjoying life. You will learn to deal with the pain and move on in life.

Who would you recommend it to?

This book is for everyone because everyone experiences death at some point in their life, even if that person isn’t a loved one, you will still experience it. If I had to pick one specific group then this book is perfect for the people who are having a hard time getting over the death of somebody. This book will definitely show them that they will move on and will continue to smile. This book is truly an inspiration to everyone and I absolutely LOVED this book.