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Last Leaves Falling by Sarah Benwell

And these are they. My final moments. They say a warrior must always be mindful of death, but I never imagined that it would find me like this . . .

Japanese teenager, Sora, is diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease). Lonely and isolated, Sora turns to the ancient wisdom of the samurai for guidance and comfort. But he also finds hope in the present; through the internet he finds friends that see him, not just his illness. This is a story of friendship and acceptance, and testing strength in an uncertain future.

This is a really beautiful book.

I love the diversity of it in two ways. Firstly it gives the reader insight into the typical life of someone outside of the UK. The main character is Japanese and just seeing those little differences in his daily life is much needed to give insight into someone living in a completely different part of the world

The main character is suffering from ALS which is getting progressively worse and seeing the impact that has on his life and mental state is incredibly harrowing and emotional throughout. It really makes you think about what you value in your life and how much you take for granted.

What I also loved about this book was the friendship that develops with Sora and two friends he meets online. That normal interaction gives him a real lifeline in a really dark period in his life and really shows you the difference friendship can make.

All in all a beautiful and emotional read


I loved this book so much and completely agree with your review - such a beautiful story.