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Rachel-K
Posts: 1,495
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan?

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one?

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!)

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?

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Zia01
Posts: 187
Registered: ‎08-08-2009

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die? Well having just read a story that started the same way, It didn't effect me too much. I am curious how it all plays out.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car? They think they're invincible is what I got out of it. What teenager doesn't think this  to some capacity.

 

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one? Just little stuff like the one girl not getting sidelined for the swim meet, stuff like that. I expect it will be more apparent as the book progresses.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!) I have no clue yet. I am excited to find out though!

 

 

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flarglepuf
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎01-07-2010

Re: The Last Day

Knowing that Sam dies ahead of time made the first few chapters a bit dissapointing.  If I didn't know she was dying, I might have been just as confused as her on the second day.  Instead, I was annoyed at her that she was being clueless about being dead, even though she was absolutely aware of her dead in the prologue.

 

I think Lauren Oliver writes about Sam remembering Vicky Hallinan so that we see that glimmer of hope in her, that she might change from her self-absorbed ways.  Through this memory, we realize that Sam is sorry for some of the things she had done in her life.  I also think it might have been used as an allusion or a foreshadowing to Juliette.

~~~~~
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it!
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bookrooted
Posts: 557
Registered: ‎12-23-2009

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die? Knowing that Sam was going to die for me, made me very anxious as a reader. In the beginning i really hated her(not enough that she desereved to die though lol), anyways as i progressed I started wanting her to really change before she did die.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car? That they took to much for granted.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan? I think it was to show how hurtful and mean she might have become over all those years, how in her short life how many people she might have hurt, by just letting it happen by her friends, or the actually bullying done by herself.

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one? Just how the girl got the parking spot and didn't get yelled at by her swim coach because she had to walk .22 miles, because Sam held Lindsay back, making them late.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!) Some more significant changes to me come later in the book, but i think whenever Sam purposely helped someone made the bigger change.

 

 

----------------------------------------------
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kpatton
Posts: 206
Registered: ‎11-27-2006

Re: The Last Day

 

I have been waiting for this discussion to start!  I was a part of Eternal on the Water which also started with knowing the main character would die.  I really don't have a problem with that type of beginning.  In some ways it is like a mystery to know what leads up to this.  I have only read through the first two chapters on purpose and after reading the second chapter, I am now wondering if Sam is really going to die.  The scene of the car crash continues to slightly change.
I love this dejavu writing in the second chapter where Sam keeps wondering if anyone else can sense that this has already happened.
I need my book to answer any of the other questions so will get to those later today.
I think we should all take the Oprah pledge and agree to never text or talk on cell phones when driving.
Kathy

Rachel-K wrote:

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

 

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?


 

 

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momofprecious1
Posts: 67
Registered: ‎01-06-2010

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die? Normally the main character in a book doesn't die (at least in the books that I've read) so it felt a little bit weird. I knew she was going to die but as I kept reading & noticing that she was trying to make up for all of her errors I was hoping that she changed the outcome of the accident so that she wouldn't die.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?  That they thought that they were invincible, not exactly what I would have been thinking about.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan? She's always felt guilty for not defending Vicky.

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one? Sam finds herself wanting to tell her friends what will happen but she doesn’t know how to tell them. She decides not to tell this & this is odd because they normally tell each other everything. Sam finds herself missing & wanting to see Rob.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you?

She is starting to appreciate the people in her life a bit more because of the accident. Unfortunately, it took something bad for her to realize her behavior & attitude toward others.

 

 

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Facepalm
Posts: 255
Registered: ‎03-30-2009

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

  It causes you to pay more attention to what is going on in her life than you might have otherwise, since you know what's coming and want to get the details about what led her to that point.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?

 You find out that Ally is clingy, and not willing to let go of her past, as well as shallow because the greatest thing she could remember was sleeping with some boy she'd had a crush on. I also think it shows that Lindsay may not be as shallow or stupid as she seems, because she was very happy about getting into a college that she wanted, although that may have had more to do with parties than education....

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan?

 It was a reminder to her how quickly her friends would put someone down to make themselves look better, and how people allowed them to do it. It should have made her question her friendship with Lindsay more, although as of right now it hasn't seemed to.

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one?

 Well obviously, she's freaked out through all of the second friday. Because she's late, Sarah gets the parking spot, which, of course, keeps her on the swim team. She also doesn't break up Brianna and Alex, because she never spoke to him in the restaurant.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!)

 I think pretty much any change would make a difference in how the day ends. She could skip the party, she could not be mean to Juliet, she could talk to Kent and not be a witch-with-a-b about it.

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?

Cross my heart hope to *not* die.

 

:smileyhappy:

team GALE, anyone?
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tennisgirl3194
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎01-06-2010

Re: The Last Day

I agree with both of your comments. Knowing Sam's going to die, and then relive her death for seven days, sort of spoils it. You know she's going to die, so I found myself rushing through the whole first day to see how she died and didn't quite get into it. Yet I don't know how you'd describe the book without giving that away.

 

I think that by showing the flashback of Vicky Hallinan, Lauren Oliver is saying Sam regrets the incident. She might wish that she can go back and change what happened. She doesn't want anyone to be bullied anymore.


flarglepuf wrote:

Knowing that Sam dies ahead of time made the first few chapters a bit dissapointing.  If I didn't know she was dying, I might have been just as confused as her on the second day.  Instead, I was annoyed at her that she was being clueless about being dead, even though she was absolutely aware of her dead in the prologue.

 

I think Lauren Oliver writes about Sam remembering Vicky Hallinan so that we see that glimmer of hope in her, that she might change from her self-absorbed ways.  Through this memory, we realize that Sam is sorry for some of the things she had done in her life.  I also think it might have been used as an allusion or a foreshadowing to Juliette.


 

=] =] =]
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vpenning
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎11-03-2009

Re: The Last Day

As a parent of young adults, the start of the book was very disturbing to me. Especially as you mentioned, the ipod fight. I also think of texting, and other things teenager behavior in the car.

 

My first thought when reading the book, is she the only one who dies. Are Elody, Ally and Lindsay also dead? Are they too reliving the day in their own reality (book)? It is not quite clear whether the others survive.

 

I am curious as to why Vicky's image is in Sam's head. She mentions how they tormented her in school, but how they became friends later. However, Vicky seems only now acceptable because she has lost weight and is pretty. I wonder how Vicky would have been treated had she still had weight issues. Sam states that she is suppose to be having a big revelation about her past, and that Vicky's image is what pops into her mind.

 

Could the fact that Sam's shallowness be indeed the revelation that she needs to see, and the author is foreshadowing that fact by mentioning it in the beginning?

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CajunBookLady
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎01-04-2010

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

 -Well...I knew that she was going to but I still wanted to know what would happen.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?

 -that they are the popular kids and these are the things important to them. they haven't had a chance to learn about life yet.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan?

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one?

 -well the first one of course she is her popular shallow self and by last feb 12th she has learned that somethings in life are really more important than being the most popular.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!)

 -Well I defenitley think the thing with Juliet plays a big part

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?

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historygirl2008AS
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎02-04-2010
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Re: The Last Day

well basicaly everybody has already said what I was going to say but its alright. yes I do agree with the whole knowing that sam is going to die thing is a little disapointing and I agree about that sam remebering Vicky offers a glimmer of hope.

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thewanderingjew
Posts: 2,247
Registered: ‎12-18-2007

Re: The Last Day

 


I think it isn't enough to promise not to drink and drive yourself etc. You also have to promise not to go into a car with anyone who drives and either drinks and drives or uses their ipod or texts or in any other way gets distracted and endangers your life as well as their own.
I am older and I was in a car with my daughter and her entire family. My son-in-law was driving. He began to text while driving. I said, pull over. If you are going to endanger anyone's life with your behavior, let it be your own. I will not drive with you.
It finally woke my daughter up and she stopped him, as well. Shortly after that, it actually became a topic of public conversation on radio and tv. Whether or not it is worse than other forms of distraction, really doesn't matter. It is a distraction if you take your eyes off the road. We all know it. None of us are above it. Distractions are dangerous.
Rachel-K wrote:

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?


 

 

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Clyo
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎01-08-2010
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Re: The Last Day

As historygirl200… has said, I was going to say basicaly what all you have said.

Knowing that Sam is going to die has made the story more interesting for me: I wanted to know HOW and WHY she was going to die, because usually the main character of a book doesn't die ^^

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SpunkiiReader
Posts: 447
Registered: ‎05-08-2009

Re: The Last Day

[ Edited ]

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

Well of course you know whats comming but as you go along you start to hope that just maybe she can stop whats comming and you hope that somehow she gets to stay alive. But of course you know that she wont because she flat out tells you shes going to die.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car? that at that age they really dont think about death or that they will die anytime soon so they think of the materialistic or shallow things in their life. what a 17 year old thinks has meaning at that time.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan? I agree with some of the others comments here, Sam regrets moments like these but was too scared to stand up to her friends and defend people like Vicky. and that it foreshadows Juliet's whole experiance.

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one? To me it almost seemed like she was going through the whole 7 stages of grief, each day a new step. and day 2 she was in denial, she completely ruled it out as last night never happend. all the changes with Sarah and Katie. until by the end of the night she believes it might just be true but then its to late to change anything.

 

Which of those changes feel most significant to you? What change do you think would make a difference in how the day ends? (Please guard against spoilers!) really not to much changes with how the day ends. on day 2 she is still going about like its not her last day, still going with the plans she had already made. but by the end of the day she does realize that she can change things if she wakes up again on Feb 12.

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krb2g
Posts: 289
Registered: ‎02-05-2008

Re: The Last Day

[ Edited ]

I'm intrigued by the fact that it's Friday, February 12 that was chosen--not Valentine's Day, but for high schoolers, a plausible date for the distribution of flowers. I think in both the date (and the way that Sam, at the moment, is doing precise calculations on how popular her friends and peers are based on the flowers they get during this day) and in the conversation they're having in the car (about death) this book is a little bit skewed towards the results it wants to get. We know from the conversation and from the flowers that it's not entirely coincidental that Sam's dying today of all days (and we know for sure when she starts repeating the same day again).

 

Flarglepuf comments on the discrepency between Sam in the prologue and Sam on the second day (who is confused about what's going on)--this discrepency did not annoy me because I think that Sam as narrator is trying to separate what she knows now (that she's dead) with what she experienced during those seven days.

 

Edited to add:

I'm entirely too young for this kind of a response, but hearing the description of the accident, all I could think was "Where are these girls' families?" They were making so many bad choices in that car.

Inspired Contributor
ambika22
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎08-31-2009

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

I've read other books when the main character dies at the beginning and the rest is just some kind of flash back. In this case it's a little bit differente since we know she doesnt really die since she is going to revive the same day over and over again.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?

They all say irrelevant things and it shows how supperficial they are. Im not really sure that you can actually "see" something just before you die, but i suppose it would be something important, like their fathers/families in this case.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan?

Sam says she's supposed to have some big revelation about her past, i think that the fact that she thinks about Vicky Hallinan shows that somehow she regrets how mean they were and we can see that shes not so superficial in the end.

 

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one?

Many things change...First of all she's scared because she's living the past day. They arrive late to class because they had to park far from school, Sarah gets on time and she can go to the swimming competition, the kind of fight she has with Rob and the waiting...and more or less the rest is very similar. I think that none of them would really make the end different because she still is and acts the same as before.

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car?

That will be easy! I dont have an ipod and i dont like to drive, so for me, i think its going to be like any other friday~

Inspired Contributor
lg4154
Posts: 72
Registered: ‎02-06-2009

Re: The Last Day

It does not change anything for me knowing that Sam will die. If anything, it makes me want to read further on to see what happens as the novel progresses. I think the conversation about life flashing before your eyes is knowing what you could have changed in your life, trying to learn from mistakes made, seeing how badly you have hurt others around you. I think the scene with Vicky Hallinan is supposed to teach Sam a lesson in how badly she treated her & how she was so self absorbed in herself and did not realized how badly she hurt Vicky. I noticed the subtle changes from the first Friday to the next, the parking spot for one, the argument about the swim meet, Sam trying to talk Rob out of having sex and hooking up later, and how Sam seems to avoid Kent on the second Friday.

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DSaff
Posts: 2,048
Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: The Last Day

[ Edited ]

Knowing Sam was going to die, yet have more chances to make things better, made me look closely at the events that led up to it and try to figure out the ones she could change for the better. Some of the things I hoped she would change: the parking lot contest, the rude remarks in the cafeteria, the fight at the party, the decision to have sex when clearly she isn't really sure Rob is "the one," the drinking, cutting class, smoking, etc. We know at the end of chapter two that she and her friends are late to school and miss the parking spot, we know that she stops the "meeting" with Alex and Brianna preventing their fight, we know Sam is scared and wants someone to talk to, but we also know she keeps things to herself. She tries to have a serious conversation about death, but her friends have no real concept of time. They are concerned with the here and now, as most teenagers are. Mortality is something they shouldn't have to think about for years, but their risky behaviors place them in harm's way one too many times.

 

I am hoping that the next changes will also deal with her interaction with others - i.e. nicer to her sister and quiet in the cafeteria.

 

I don't drink and drive, or text/talk on phone and drive, so it is an easy promise for me to make. :smileyhappy:

DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
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lau05
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎01-08-2010

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die?

It encourage me to read the book, to know the reason  why she die and if finally she dies, know if she could change important things in another people’s life.

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car?

They really don’t take seriously the conversation. It strikes me when one of them (now I don’t remember if Elody or Ally) say she prefers die making love. There are other things more important in the life and Sam will realize forward.

What are the subtle and not-so-subtle changes from the fist Friday February 12,  to the second one?

 I consider two significant changes between one and other Friday.  The second day, thanks to Sam, her friend’s attitude is contained when she doesn’t succeed finding parking space and not annoying to Kate and Alex. The other change is the attitude of Rob and Kent with Sam.

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KateBrianIsAwesome
Posts: 115
Registered: ‎08-19-2009

Re: The Last Day

What effect does it have on you as a reader to start the story knowing that Sam is going to die? It got me interested to see what kind of events lead up to her death. I also am used to reading books that start off with telling the reader that the main character is dead or is going to die.

 

What does the conversation about "life flashing before your eyes" just before death tell you about each of the friends in the car? I think all four of them take life as a joke. They don't value the meaning of living.

 

Why do you think Sam remembers the scene with Vicky Hallinan? I think it shows us that she does regret some of the things she has done in the past.

 

By the way, our first official Friday during the discussion is Friday February 12th. Can we all promise not to drink and drive, and not to fight over ipods in the car? I can promise that fully and truthfully. Though the kids at my school I doubt it will happen. Ok, I have to stop talking about this subject now before I start rambling on. This is one topic that I struggle to keep quiet about. I spoke up about this once and got into an arguement. The girl was not against underage drinking and all that other crap. Me, it kills me to know that people are harming themselves. Then years down the road everyone is going to regret the choices they made with friends that are no longer in their life.

Reading can only make you more happy and smarter. :smileyhappy:

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