Rating: 3 stars
Cover Rating: 4 stars (I like how simple it is, but it's not really eye-catching. I like the scratch marks on the photo.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: September 13, 2011
Publisher: David Fickling Books
Page Count: 413 p.
Mikey's sister accuses a boy of rape. Mikey doesn't know how to handle this situation, other than roughing up the guy in question. Ellie's brother is accused of rape and just made bail. She's happy to have him home and wants to protect him, but isn't sure if he's innocent. When Mikey drops by Ellie's house looking for trouble, he is instantly taken with her. But Ellie doesn't know who he is and the consequences of her finding out may be devastating for everyone.
So there was kind of two stories going on in this novel. There was the rape accusation/trial fiasco and then the Romeo and Juliet love story. I wished there was more about the trial. They are young and at the mercy of their instincts I suppose, but it seems like the trial is a pretty big fricken deal!
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Regardless, it was quite disappointing not to know what the verdict ends up being. There was a lot of build up and changed stories and pieces put and pulled together, and then nothing.The love story part of this novel was good though. A tale of star-crossed lovers who are from two feuding families. Mikey is also from the poor part of town, whereas Ellie is quite rich. I liked both of them, even if Ellie was a fairly weak character at times. I'm glad she stood up for her beliefs and I'm glad her mom was a good mother. Her dad was a angry dad, that wanted the best for his family, but punished any mistake, except for rape apparently. I wish that there was more focus on one thing or another in this story though, it seems to jump between them a lot. It was told in alternating third person view between Ellie and Mikey and that could be the cause of some of the I liked Before I Die a lot better than this one, but this was still an okay read.jumpiness.
"Mikey couldn't believe his life."
"Dizzy behind her eyes, sharp stabbing pains in her head, like holding her breath underwater, as she reached for the door handle."