Sep 8, 2014

Falling Into Place by @amyzwrites Review

Falling Into Place by Amy Zhang
Release Date: September 9, 2014
Publisher: Greenwillow Books; 304 pages
On the day Liz Emerson tries to die, they had reviewed Newton’s laws of motion in physics class. Then, after school, she put them into practice by running her Mercedes off the road.

Why? Why did Liz Emerson decide that the world would be better off without her? Why did she give up? Vividly told by an unexpected and surprising narrator, this heartbreaking and nonlinear novel pieces together the short and devastating life of Meridian High’s most popular junior girl. Mass, acceleration, momentum, force—Liz didn’t understand it in physics, and even as her Mercedes hurtles toward the tree, she doesn’t understand it now. How do we impact one another? How do our actions reverberate? What does it mean to be a friend? To love someone? To be a daughter? Or a mother? Is life truly more than cause and effect? Amy Zhang’s haunting and universal story will appeal to fans of Lauren Oliver, Gayle Forman, and Jay Asher.

The grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I think that's one of the first thoughts that comes to my mind when trying to quickly summarize this book.  Falling Into Place tells the story of Liz.  Liz is pretty much the "it" girl at her high school.  But at the very beginning of the novel, Liz attempts suicide.  This book is told in a combination of flashbacks and present day, with stories from people in Liz's everyday life.  It sucks you in from the beginning and is a great fast paced read.

Liz, Julia, and Kennie are a trio of best friends.  They are extremely popular in high school, but have all done some pretty hurtful things.  But their friendship is solid, you can tell that these three have a bond. This is exactly how you tell a story about characters that are seemingly unlikable,  One can easily try to write this story off as a popular girls with their materialistic problems.  But this is definitely not what this story is about.  The author has creatively made these seemingly unlikable girls likable for readers.  Which definitely is not an easy task.

My favorite character in this book is actually not one of the three girls though.  It's Liam.  Liam is an unpopular high school student.  He has a crush on Liz and as his story progresses you understand why he has a crush on her.  He sees the true identity of people, even those who ridicule him.  He banishes the stereotype of the quiet kid. Even after something unspeakable happens to him, he pushes on and doesn't let himself become depressed.  He lives his life how he wants to live it, regardless of others opinion of him.

I actually was able to guess who the narrator of the story was.  The narrator that the author chose is pretty genius.  And even though the narrator is subtle, the stories told bring a lot to the story.  This is definitely one of my favorite reads this year.  It's quick paced, and can easily be read in one sitting. It's an extremely strong debut from Amy Zhang.  I look forward to reading more from her!

This ARC was acquired at Book Expo America.  Thank you HarperTeen for providing this in exchange for an honest review.


  1. I keep seeing these amazing reviews for this book and I obviously need to bump it to the top of my list. Great review!

  2. Sana @ Step Into FictionSeptember 10, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    Definitely bump it up! I was blown away by the fact that Amy Zhang wrote this when she was in high school!


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