Things I’d Rather Do Than Die by Christine Hurley Deriso

Title: Things I’d Rather Do Than Die
Author: Christine Hurley Deriso
Publication: September 18, 2018
Publisher: North Star Editions
Genre: Teens, Family Issues, Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 277

SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Jade Fulton and Ethan Garrett are opposites in every sense of the word. Ethan is an all-American poster boy—a star athlete dating the most popular girl in school and a devout Christian. Jade keeps mostly to herself. She abhors joining “things,” hates everyone at their high school except her best friend, Gia, and considers herself agnostic.

When Ethan and Jade find themselves locked in an aerobics room overnight, their confinement forces them to push past the labels they’ve given each other. Jock. Loner. Jesus freak. Skeptic. Golden boy. Intellectual. Amid hours of arguing, philosophizing, and silly game playing, Ethan and Jade learn there’s a lot more to the other person than meets the eye.

After that night, life returns to normal and each goes back to their regular lives. Still, neither one can shake the unexpected bond they formed and they can’t help but question what they’ve been taught to believe, who they want to be, and where their hearts truly lie.


I got way more than I was expecting from Christine Hurley Deriso’s novel Things I’d Rather Do Than Die. This novel is a perfect mix of romance, coming of age, with a little religion mixed in.

When I first started Things I’d Rather Do Than Die, I wasn’t expecting any religious aspect, but in the first few chapters it became apparent that religion would play a part in the story. The story follows Jade and Ethan as they deal with the after math of being robbed together and have a forever bond. However, they come from different sides of the tracks. Ethan, quarterback of the football team and strongly religious doesn’t run in the same circles as Jade, agnostic and non-joiner. 

I loved these two characters. I did find Ethan to be a little more emotional than I tend to care for, but I understood his dilemma throughout the book. I liked the level of emotional buildup Deriso was able to write and found myself tearing up on more than one occasion. 

Deriso was able to draw out emotions in me as a reader, which is always a perk in a book that makes you connect more. She has a very smooth writing  style that makes the pages fly by and the story has so much going on that you don’t find yourself wanting to put it down.

Deriso has written a jam packed novel for just about anyone. I’ll definitely be picking up her next one and you should too.


Things I’d Rather Do Than Die by Christine Hurley Deriso is available September 18th on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and check your local bookstores. Also make sure to add the book to your To Reads list on Goodreads and leave feedback for the author when you are finished. You can also check out more from author Christine Hurley Deriso on her website here!

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