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Wednesday, May 6, 2009
BEFORE SEPTEMBER FALLS-JESSE LEE
It is not that often that a first time author amazes me with his book and blows me away with it. This is one of those times. Jesse Lee has written a remarkable account of one young man’s summer before college. The simplicity of the story line and the incredible character creations held my eyes captive to the story and would not let go until the very last page.
Jason is a typical nineteen year old boy. Graduating from high school, he realizes that he only has this one summer left to party and hang with the friends he grew up with before people move away and college life begins. Jason goes full speed ahead and doesn’t waste a moment. He decides it is high time he loses his virginity and does so in a rather awkward way and pays the price for that decision shortly after.
Spending as much time as possible with his best friend Tawny, the two of them party it up, hook up with people, experience break up, and have the time of their lives. They amount of alcohol they consume is worrisome, but the memories they create are unforgettable.
At first glance this story appears to be simply about a guy drinking too much and making it his business to get laid as much as possible, but I think there is more to it than that. What I got out of this story was a young man coming into his own. Jason finds himself. He discovers more about himself in this one summer than I think he even realizes. He does this by making bad decision, going out on a limb several times, being accepted and rejected, and taking chances. All of this gives him a sense of self.
I give so much credit to Jesse Lee for writing about this. This is a fantastic story that would be beneficial for high school and college aged kids to read, although I am not so sure their parents would agree with me on this.
A big part of what made this story so incredible was the characters. Jesse Lee allows his readers to make an emotional connection; allows us to share in their emotions; to laugh when they laugh, and cry when they cry. I think that their situations are relate-able and allow the readers to feel a certain kinship with these characters. A bond is formed and between reader and character, which is exactly why I can say with such confidence that Jesse Lee has an incredible talent for writing and is completely inspiring.