Before I Die by Jenny Downham

No. of pages: 346
Rating: 8/10

Synopsis: With only months left to live, 16-year-old Tessa makes a list of things she must experience: sex, petty crime, fame, drugs and true love. Downham's wrenching work features a girl desperate for a few thrilling moments before leukemia takes her away. Although Tessa remains ardently committed to her list, both she and the reader find comfort in the quiet resonance of the natural world. Although Tessa begins to see herself within the natural continuum, she still feels furious with her lot.

Review: I expected this book to be very sad from start to finish, full of Tessa dying slowly, and whilst in a way that was true, it was also about living. The writing brings through the emotion of every situation, and you can feel the pain of her family, especially that of her dad as he tries to protect her. Her list of things to complete before she dies changes frequently, but each thing is deeply important to her. Even though I knew what was coming at the end, it was still sad and deeply moving and I have to admit, I did shed a tear or two.
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