I got this book on a whim 5 years ago while I was cruising the Virgin Megastore aisles. I was 12, reckless, and obviously, an inexperienced reader. That being said, I did not even read the blurb (my 12 year old self wouldn’t have even known what blurbs were). I don’t know how the prices at your local Virgin Megastore are, but they are beyond belief at mine. Definitely more than double the actual price of the book you’d find at a proper bookstore.
I’d say it was fate that brought me to this book, and what made it catch my eye. Because it was nothing more than a beautiful cover to me back then, but I’m not sure if I believe in fate.
I’ve read this book twice, I’m sure it wasn’t meant to be read by 12 year olds; but I can’t deny the fact that it still hit me hard. Then I read it probably 2 years ago; still, it had an even greater impact on me.
Now, after watching the movie (which was gorgeously portrayed, by the way), I knew for a fact that this is definitely one of the best standalones I’ve ever read. I was literally bawling (I was the only one; and the only attendants who’ve actually read the book were me and my two reader-friends) during the scene where Sam actually took the gloves from her little sister tenderly and hugged her (Sam was tearing up a little herself actually). I don’t know why that specific scene hit me hard; it just did.
What I love is the way Sam accepted her fate, and instead of grieving, decided to go ahead and fit the right pieces of the puzzle together, and redeem herself. This has always sort of strengthened my faith in a way, because it’s important to remind yourself that your life doesn’t end when you’re over a certain age; no one is spared or excused, even the richest man on Earth is going to eventually fade away and leave everything behind. Reminding yourself that death might be lurking just around the corner can actually allow you to carve yourself into the person you’d want to become. And actually considering the consequences of doing the simplest of actions like mocking a certain person or bullying them; no matter how stupid or insignificant you think it is; it might affect them strongly. This is the kind of book/movie that makes me want to become a better person.
I fangirled so hard at first because Sam was literally quoting the first few lines from the book (my favorite quote) during the opening credits.
“Maybe you can afford to wait. Maybe for you there’s a tomorrow. Maybe for you there’s one thousand tomorrows, or three thousand, or ten, so much time you can bathe in it, roll around it, let it slide like coins through you fingers. So much time you can waste it.
But for some of us there’s only today. And the truth is, you never really know.”
This is, hands-down, the best book-to-movie adaptation I’ve ever seen. Only some insignificant parts from the novel were excluded in the movie. But everything else was so on point and exactly how I imagined it that it was so overwhelming.