Monday, October 31, 2011

The Day Before by Lisa Schroeder

Amber sneaks out of her house this morning. She’s been thinking about it for quite awhile and she’s prepared herself. She has all the essentials to get her by: jelly beans, drumsticks, and a limo waiting to take her to the ocean. It’s the day before the thing she is dreading most, and she has only this one day to herself to figure it all out…

Cade is standing in the aquarium mesmerized by the swirling, floating jellyfish. He’s here on purpose to lose himself however he can. He thinks he’s prepared for what going to happen. It’s the day before the thing he is dreading the most, and he’s hoping to find the courage to face it, using this one day.

Amber and Cade meet accidentally, and this is where their journey begins. It starts out quite innocently, no one daring to tell their story, or what is going to happen. But slowly, the stories pour forth along with the pain of decisions needing to be met. Heads: you lose; tails: you lose. Is there even a winning side? Both Amber and Cade aren’t sure, but they do know that this is a day of oxymorons – happiness found inside the overwhelming fears both must face.

Is one day enough?

Lisa Schroeder’s novel in verse will carry the reader forward with the story of each person slowly coming to the surface without the reader losing interest. Her story is poetic, not only in the cirumstances both teens finds themselves in, but also in her concrete poetry she scatters throughout the pages. Redemption can be found even in the darkest of places and Schroeder’s novel captures these two elements with clarity and beauty. After reading this book, it did make me stop and think about both character’s situation and what tough decisions in life both have to make. That is a sign of a quality book. Recommended.

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