Felipe A A itibaren 3600 Frederikssund, Danimarka
This book was very interesting. When the book opens, the reader is suppose to hate the protagonist, Sam; she is shallow, cruel, and superficial, and her three best friends aren't much better. At the end of the first chapter, after she had died, Sam asks the reader if she truly deserved death for her behavior. I have to admit, I thought it was a fair question to ask, after watching how Sam and her friends effect their high school in such a negative way. As Sam continues to live her last day over and over, she experiments with how to spend her last hours. While the reader is pretty confident that Sam will re-asses her life and make the right decisions in the end, the ending is still quite unpredictable. I really enjoyed this novel and was quite impressed that it was Oliver's first novel. I like the idea of having high schoolers read this book so that they can learn how much their every cruel or kind action impacts others. Altogether, definitely a novel I'll be recommending.
borrow the book, read chapter 7, "crooked timber" for an excellent summary of what the author intents us to understand from his book. then read the whole thing. worthwhile reading. the genre: science with a social purpose. first, to show us the latest science of empathy, and second to dispel the idea that humans are so unique to be a mountain range emerging from the plains of other creatures, but rather we are like a high peak surrounded by smaller ones, then foothills, then lower hills. those creatures like us; great apes, whales, dogs etc, differ not as much in kind but in amount. it's an easy but interesting and informative read, don't let the label science distract you, written for that mythical average educated reader, it's consciously aimed to teach and to be rememberable, the author wants people to use what they learn from him and for us use it to alter our world to better shape it to what people are really like, versus false notions of human nature, not based on science but wishful thinking.. which is the theme, understand what we are like as a result of evolutionary pressures, by a study not only of people but of our nearer relatives, chimps etc, then use those lessons to understand how we live together in community through the essential elements of empathy. it's a good, most relevant book given the political demands of the right for dog eat dog unfettered capitalism, which the author notes in the last chapter but doesn't seem to enter into the analysis early, good thing, science as straight as possible without a lot of commentary.
I don't care what Greg says ; ), I'm intrigued by this book.