Published: July 5th 2007 by David Flickling Books
ISBN: 0385613466 (ISBN13: 9780385613460)
Setting: United Kingdom
Literary Awards: ALA Teens' Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults (2008), Branford Boase Award (2008), The Inky Awards for Silver Inky (2008)
Tessa has just months to live. Fighting back against hospital visits, endless tests, drugs with excruciating side-effects, Tessa compiles a list. It’s her To Do Before I Die list. And number one is Sex. Released from the constraints of ‘normal’ life, Tessa tastes new experiences to make her feel alive while her failing body struggles to keep up. Tessa’s feelings, her relationships with her father and brother, her estranged mother, her best friend, and her new boyfriend, all are painfully crystallised in the precious weeks before Tessa’s time finally runs out.
Tessa who is 16 years old was diagnosed with Leukemia when she was 12 years old. She finds out that her diagnoses is terminal & only has a few months left to live, which she then realizes that she needs to make the best of the time she has left. She then creates a to-do list before she dies. She knows well she can't be like normal girls her age and experience love, so she settles for sex which is the first thing on her list.
She goes through all these experiences from drugs--to crime, which then leads to a very heartbreaking ending. Through out the story, it was very touching and poignant. The well-written literature made this story unforgettable.
What i really loved about this novel was how strong the characters were, the love story, and the importance of life itself. Also how realistic this story is.
Tessa's character is so astounding, that i wanted her to live as much as she did. I cried about 5 times during this book. Throughout the book, it was slowly breaking my heart, page after page, and when i got to the end, it just shattered.
I would have to say this was the most touching, poignant, heartbreaking books I've ever read. This is a book you definitely SHOULD read & add to your bookshelf. It's one of those books that you don't want to put down, or take a break from reading!