Saturday, January 22, 2011

Here Lies Bridget by Paige Harbison

Title: Here Lies Bridget
Author: Paige Harbison
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
E-ARC, 291 pages
Date Published: January 18, 2011
Description (Taken from Goodreads): 
Heroine, Bridget Duke, rules her high school, but when she crashes her car and ends up in limbo, she must confront the people she has wronged, all of whom want her to go to hell. The outcome of these meetings will decide her final destination.
I wanted to love Here Lies Bridget, I really did. But it’s a difficult book to love because Bridget, the MC, is an atrocious person. That’s the whole point of the story. Bridget is selfish and self-centered. She treats everyone around her like crap, tearing them down to bring herself up. To her, life is great because she lives in a Bridget bubble – that is until the Bridget bubble pops and she’s forced to acknowledge what a terrible person she is deal with the consequences in a life or death boardroom judgment.

Bridget really reminds me of Regina George with a little Gretchen Weiner thrown in because she is the queen bee, but she is completely oblivious to how she treats other people, believing that her peers actually like and respect her. That’s pretty much where the Mean Girls similarities end though. There are no foot creams on the face or shirts with the boobs cut out; just a disgustingly horrible teenage girl who slips down the social ladder and crashes her car.

100 pages into the book and all the reader really knows is that Bridget is one mean girl. She treats her friends like crap, degrades her stepmom, and uses her power to hurt others. Once Bridget gets in the accident and wakes up in a boardroom full of her peers, things get much better.

When Bridget is in this limbo state, she must literally step into the shoes of some of the people she has wronged and see her actions from their perspective. In doing this, Bridget realizes who she is and how people see her. I even felt sympathy for her, which is surprising considering I loathed her before she nearly died.

Here Lies Bridget is a quick read with A Christmas Carol feel to it. Bridget starts off as such a horrible person, but gradually she grows and her attempt to atone for her mistakes doesn’t leave her with the happy ending she wanted. The story is wrapped up nicely and the character growth/transformation is handled well. While not my favorite book, Here Lies Bridget has a good message behind it.

Opening lines:
I pressed down on the accelerator. It felt good to have power back in my life. ~ pg. 7

Favorite lines: Everything was done. I couldn’t take it back, couldn’t change it. It was way too late to say the two words that could have saved me if I’d just meant them sooner.
    I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry… ~ pg. 9
*This is the e-ARC version and lines, pages, cover art may be subject to change before official publication
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.

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La Coccinelle said...

I found Bridget to be pretty atrocious, too. However, the redemption part of the story didn't really ring true for me... so Bridget is still a horrible person in my mind.

A book with a similar premise but much better character development is Lauren Oliver's Before I Fall. If you haven't read that one yet, I highly recommend it!

Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) said...

I did enjoy the change at the end, but I agree, Bridget was still a pretty atrocious person. I am happy it wasn't all sunshine and rainbows though. I have yet to read Before I Fall, but I have and vow to read it soon.

Bere said...

Excellent review, Nikki. I've seen this one around but it just doesn't sound like the book for me. I definitely agree with La Coccinelle. Before I Fall is such a great novel. I absolutely urge to read it. Again, great honest review, Nikki, thank you! =]

~The Book Pixie said...

Yeah this book does sound a lot like Before I Fall which I guess is one reason why I'm wary of reading it because Before I Fall was really amazing. I have this one on my wishlist but I don't know. Still kinda on the fence about it. Thanks for the great review though! :D


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