‘Before I Die’ by Jenny Downham – Review

before i die Goodreads


Tessa has just months to live. Fighting back against hospital visits, endless tests, drugs with excruciating side-effects, Tessa compiles a list. It’s her To Do Before I Die list. And number one is Sex. Released from the constraints of ‘normal’ life, Tessa tastes new experiences to make her feel alive while her failing body struggles to keep up.

Tessa’s feelings, her relationships with her father and brother, her estranged mother, her best friend, and her new boyfriend, all are painfully crystallised in the precious weeks before Tessa’s time finally runs out

My Rating:

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My Review:

I reserved this book at my local library, as I do most of my books. It was suprising easy to read. I’d had it for a week or so, but never got past the first chapter. Then one day, I sat down and read it until quite late at night. I didn’t finish it that night but you get the picture 🙂

I told myself that I wouldn’t read it straight after finishing The Fault in Our Stars, because I would compare it and was I’m in love with that book it wouldn’t be fare to this one. But what did I do? Read it straight after TFiOS. Typical. I’ll try not to be bias 🙂

Tessa was a very hard character to like. She was so negative about her illness and seemed to ‘want’ to die, even though she knew that she would miss certain things. I must admit, I was choking up at one point.

I can connect with Tessa when she was thinking about wanting a boyfriend or ‘someone’ there. Everyone wants to be loved romantically.

Before I Die was written beautifully, I couldn’t fault the writing. I just couldn’t give it a five star because Tessa was hard to ‘like’ as a character, as I mentioned before.

Author Bio:

jenny Goodreads

Jenny Downham (born 1964) is a British novelist and an ex-actor. In her first book, Before I Die, the fictional account of the last few months of a sixteen-year-old girl who has been dying of leukemia for 4 years. The book is told in the first person. The book was acclaimed and was short-listed for the 2007 Guardian Award and the 2008 Lancashire Children’s Book of the Year, nominated for the 2008 Carnegie Medal and the 2008 Booktrust Teenage Prize, and won the 2008 Branford Boase Award.


Thanks for reading! Don’t forget to comment!

Star 😛



14 thoughts on “‘Before I Die’ by Jenny Downham – Review

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