Wednesday, September 26, 2012

"By the Time You Read This I’ll Be Dead" by Julie Ann Peters

200 pages
After a series of failed suicide attempts, Daelyn Rice is determined to get her death right. To her, life is unbearable. She’s always been viciously bullied—even sexually harassed—due to her large size, and her parents seem unconcerned about her pain. Now she really can’t deal, so she starts visiting a website for “completers,” a site that encourages those who have resolved to end their lives. Then, out of nowhere, a boy named Santana begins to sit with her after school while she’s waiting to for her parents to pick her up. She tries to make it clear that she has no interest in getting to know him, but he won’t give up. Just when Daelyn finally got her plan together, she begins to wonder if it’s too late to connect with someone and let him into her world.
I really didn’t care for this book at all.  Like Thirteen Reasons Why, I felt like the narrator was whiny and overdramatic. I don’t mean to take suicide and depression lightly, but Daelyn’s voice didn’t ring true to me as someone suffering from true depression. Yes, she did have some terrible things happen to her. And I do admit that, hopefully, kids will read something like this and realize that the way they treat other people has consequences. Still, I just didn’t buy it. Daelyn’s parents obviously cared about her, but she seemed to think no one in the world would mind if she died. Perhaps she truly was clinically depressed, but if that’s the case, there should have been more indication of those kind of feelings as opposed to fixation in specific incidents. I found it difficult to like Daelyn because she seemed to think only of herself—for instance, when she finds out that another character has cancer, her first thought is that he’s lucky because he’ll die soon. Granted, the things she’s been through are responsible for some of that kind of thinking, but nevertheless it was hard for me to care about the character when I only knew her as that kind of person. And when I don’t care about the characters, I don’t care much for the book.

No comments:

Post a Comment