Before I Fall is one of the most thought provoking novels I have ever read. Lauren Oliver takes her readers on a journey of self-discovery where who you think you are is questioned at every turn, and where even your slightest decisions have life altering effects.From the beginning I knew I was in for an interesting read when the author sent this disclaimer, "the main character, Samantha, is very unsympathetic at the beginning of the story. She is mean and selfish and self-involved, and you will probably hate her. That's okay!!! But I promise, promise, promise that if you keep reading, things will change!!"And Lauren was right. Samantha in the beginning was horrible. For the first part of the novel, I seriously questioned how I was going to finish this novel if I disliked the main character so much. However, readers must also consider that this is a novel about change... about growth. It seems that many times an author gives a glimpse into the darkness (selfish, spoiled, mean, etc.), but focuses more in the light. But Before I Fall does something rare in YA novels by showcasing the full scope. This allows the reader to fully appreciate where Samantha has come from, and it gives her character another level of depth; something I truly adored.Slightly reminiscent of Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why, Before I Fall offers the reader a complex and intriguing look into how we effect those around us. It amazes me that a debut novel can evoke all the emotions that are displayed in this novel. I laugh... I cried... and I just could not stop reading this dazzling novel until I was finished. This powerful, beautifully written novel will leave you on the edge of your seat. Highly recommended!