Published by: Simon Pulse, June 28 2011
Genre: Young Adult
Format/pages: Hardcover 307 pages
Format read/Source: eGalley via Simon & Schuster Galley Grab
Date read: April 26 2011
Rating: 5 / 5 Stars
Amber is overwhelmed with life’s demands and needs a day alone at the beach to process her thoughts. It is the day before a dreaded life-changing event is occurring. Her day at the beach goes in an unexpected direction when she meets Cade, someone who also seems to be running away from something. They decide to keep their secrets to themselves and to just spend the perfect day together before facing tomorrow’s realities. The more they get acquainted though, the more Amber’s concern grows about what Cade is hiding. Will their perfect beach day stay carefree or does fate have other plans?
The Day Before is written in verse, like the author’s other books for young adults. I admit, at first I was uneasy about reading a book written in verse, and thought the style would get in the way of the story. However, the style works very well for this story, and beautifully captures the character’s emotions and sets the tone. I was impressed with the author’s way with words, especially considering she has to tell the story with fewer words than in a traditional narrative. The story unfolds gradually, and each page is like a present to open as new information comes to light about the characters.
The story takes place over one day, and past events are explained through Amber’s letters of correspondence that are sprinkled throughout the book. The main interaction is between Amber and Cade as they get to know each other through word games, exploring the beach town, and talking about favorite songs and movies. They are trying to make the day light and fun as they are both trying to escape from their troubles.
This story has depth and brings out a range of emotions. Amber and Cade’s journey is sweet and heartfelt, although they are both going through emotional times. The story kept me turning pages swiftly and I finished it in no time. In fact, I liked it so much I started reading it again at a more relaxed pace so I could savor the details.
Recommended for fans of Lisa Schroeder’s books, or fans of Contemporary YA. The Day Before is a fast and refreshing read that’s full of heart and emotion. I look forward to reading the author’s other books.
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