By the Time You Read This, I’ll be Dead by Julie Anne Peters

Daelyn doesn’t want to live. After a string of botched suicide attempts she is determined to get it right and starts looking at a website for “completers.” She’s tired of the bullying and the loneliness and she is determined to end it all. Then some boy named Santana begins to sit with her after school and he just won’t leave her alone. She doesn’t want to make any connections because she doesn’t plan on staying around but Santana won’t let up and she starts to have doubts.

Julie Anne Peters is one of my favourite authors but for me this wasn’t one of her greatest books. I really struggled connecting to Daelyn as a character and I had a difficult time feeling anything for her. It might have just been that I have a problem with the topic, but I just couldn’t get past it. There were a few things I did really enjoy that I thought made this book stand out that I think will appeal to many readers. First, the main character is silent. Daelyn cannot talk and that made for a very unique reading experience that I really enjoyed. Also, Peters leaves the ending very vague, so the reader can decide what happens, which is rather creative. Also, I think those who like to read issue fiction will find a lot of the elements they are generally pulled to in this book. So while I didn’t necessarily love this book, I still encourage you to read it and make your own decision.

You might enjoy By the Time You Read This, if you like books with:  real life serious issues, not a lot of focus on romance, sensitive and emotionally evocative storylines, quick and fast paced plots

Also by Julie Anne Peters: Luna, Between Mom and Jo, Far From Xanadu, How to do you Spell G-E-E-K?

If you liked By the Time You Read This, you might also enjoy: Willow by Julia Hoban, Crash into me by Albert Borris, Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers

Additional Info:

www.through-the-light.com

Ontario Association for Suicide Prevention. This is a list of Crisis and Contact numbers throughout Ontario

 gURL – great website just for teens, has information and resources on suicide, bullying and other difficult issues teen face.

Rating: W4/4   C2/4   P2.5/4   O3/4   PP2/4   CR3.5/4

Grade Level: JS

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