Published by Henry Holt and Co. on July 2, 2013
Genres: Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Romance
Source: Publisher (Mail)
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Sixteen-year-old Samantha D’Angelo has death on the brain. Her summer internship at the local newspaper has her writing obituaries instead of soaking up the sun at the beach. Between Shelby, Sam’s boy-crazy best friend; her boss Harry, a true-blue newspaper man; and AJ, her fellow “intern scum” (aka the cute drummer for a band called Love Gas), Sam has her hands full. But once she figures out what—or who—is the best part of her summer, will she mess it all up?
As Sam learns her way around both the news room and the real world, she starts to make some momentous realizations about politics, ethics, her family, romance, and most important—herself.
Famous Last Words is a cute, light, contemporary read that made me smile. I loved the idea of a newsroom setting, which reminded me of the Mary Tyler Moore show on TV, and I was very excited to read about a quirky teenager who writes obituaries. What a unique idea, huh? While I did enjoy it, there was nothing extremely special or memorable about it.
Sam is a pretty funny girl. She’s an aspiring journalist who lands a job at the town newspaper writing obituaries. I had fun learning right along with her, how life in a newsroom is and what it’s like to be a journalist. It was also fun hearing about the stories of the people she got to write obituaries for. Probably my favorite thing about Sam is that she would write obituaries for people who annoyed the crap out of her, and for herself when she did something stupid or embarrassing. Of course, she would delete them, but her venting was endearing and it made her unique. She’s also clueless when it comes to guys, which I could not help but adore about her. As she wrote about dead people, she figured out how she wanted to live. I liked watching her transition from a silly little girl to a somewhat less silly girl. Haha.
I really liked the guy Sam works with, A.J. He’s nerdy and quirky just like she is, and they’re pretty great friends. He looks out for her, gives her rides, and helps her with her feature obit stories when she needs it. His snarkiness and desire to protect her from the jerk of the office, Tony, was really cute and I ended up liking him a lot. I would have liked to learn more about A.J., as he was my favorite character in the book. Sam’s boss, Harry, reminded me so much of Lou Grant (from Mary Tyler Moore) that I had to laugh about it. And the fact that the copy editor called Sam Moronica was perfect.
All in all, Famous Last Words was a fun little read. I enjoyed it while I read it, but am already forgetting some of the details. Definitely read it if you’re an aspiring journalist and want to see what the newsroom is all about.