The Moment Before by Suzy Vitello | Contemporary Blog Tour Stop

The Moment Before 
Suzy Vitello
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Age Group: Young Adult
Publication Date: 14th January 2014
Number of Pages: 214

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“Don’t get me wrong. I loved my sister. I never, not once, wished her dead.”
Brady and Sabine Wilson are sisters born eleven months apart, but they couldn’t be more different. Popular Sabine, the head cheerleader dating the high school hunk, seems to have all the luck, while her younger, artsy sister "Brady Brooder" is a loner who prefers the sidelines to the limelight.
After Sabine dies in a horrific cheerleading accident, grief unravels Brady and her family. Once recognized for her artistic talent, 17-year-old Brady finds herself questioning the value of everything she once held dear. Her best friend betrays her. Her parents’ marriage is crumbling. And the boy everyone blames for the accident seems to be her only ally in the search for answers in the wake of her sister’s death. As an unlikely friendship emerges, Brady learns more about Sabine – and love – than she bargained for.

As a founding member of what the Oregonian has dubbed Portland’s “hottest writing group” (members include Chuck Palahniuk, Chelsea Cain, Lidia Yuknavitch, Monica Drake and Cheryl Strayed), Suzy’s name has graced the acknowledgement pages of many a book. Her own award-winning writing has appeared in a bunch of journals and anthologies. She holds an MFA from Antioch Los Angeles, and when she’s not writing novels, does freelance copywriting and editing. The Moment Before is her debut novel. Suzy lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, Kirk, and son, Carson. Find out more on

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Brady and her family are coming to terms with the loss of Sabine, Brady’s sister, after she was killed in a cheerleading stunt gone-wrong. Sabine’s enthusiasm and energy was a major factor in the family’s unity and as Brady coasts through her mundane school and social life, she begins to imagine what Sabine would say.

Events take a turn for the worse, when Brady is deprived of the art award she so truly deserves and a downward spiral of events lead to her life becoming entwined with Connor, Sabine’s cheerleading stunt double, who bears the blame for the accident after he tested positive for drugs and was deemed unfit to perform. As the pair become closer, Connor begins to shed light on aspects of Sabine that Brady was never aware of and she starts to question everything and everyone in her life.

This story was a quick read, I finished in within about 5 hours and this was due to the enjoyable reading style, quick pace and unravelling secrets that we discover only the way. I was shocked to discover that Sabine was not as angelic as everyone thought and I was constantly going back and forth questioning who I believed was telling the truth or not. The flashback retellings of Sabine’s accident also made me squirm so many times due to my overactive imagination – surely it’s not healthy to have an imagination that makes everything The Walking Dead-esque?

Overall this story was a quick enjoyable read; I loved the characters and was willing for everything to turn out ok for them in the end. I’m not usually a fan of ‘dark contemporary’ books but this was a refreshing change to my usual reads and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Definitely check it out if you want something enjoyable, not overly romantic, and with a story that makes you contemplate your decisions in life and how it affects others.

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