I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Don't Fall: Adventures in Love, Loss, and Lead Climbing on June 1, 2020
22 year old Sophie is living a life of paradoxes. She loves rock climbing, but is afraid of heights. She has embarked on a solo traveling adventure, but keeps meeting attractive men who insist on complicating things. She is heartbroken after the death of her mother, but feels more alive than ever as she traverses three continents and eleven countries, trying to find her way. This is a coming of age story; a tale of adventure; and a powerful memoir of loss and love.
As you may or may not know, I run a series on my blog that I just started this summer where I interview travel bloggers. I started this series so that I could find and meet other amazing travel bloggers and hear their stories.
Well, when Sophie reached out to me to be featured on my interview series but with a bit of a twist, I was immediately interested. She explained to me that she had just written a memoir and would love for me to interview her as a traveler and a writer. Needless to say, I was intrigued and knew that I wanted to read her memoir (and feature her of course)!
I was so happy to have received a copy for review from Sophie herself.
Now, let me start this review off by saying that this is the kind of memoir that you get so engrossed in that you just can’t put it down. For reference, I read the whole memoir within a few hours in one single sitting. I literally didn’t even get up once. That’s how intrigued I was in learning more about Sophie’s adventures.
I honestly haven’t read that many memoirs, and for some reason I always expected a memoir to read like a boring autobiography. That is not the case with Don’t Fall. At times, the book even reads like an adventure fiction book, but the events are all completely real.
One aspect that I absolutely loved about Sophie’s memoir was her snark. Seriously, you get it on almost every page, and I absolutely loved it. I have yet to read a memoir with as much snark as Sophie. She reminded me a lot of some of my favorite fictional characters and I had to keep reminding myself that she’s not fictional!
Even though I don’t know Sophie personally, I feel as if I do just through reading her book. I was there for the heartbreak and the tragedies and the moments when she was at her happiest. My emotions were changing throughout the book just as hers were, and that’s why I just had to keep reading. I needed to know what was going to happen next.
The writing throughout the book was also fantastic. I truly do hope that Sophie writes another book in the future. I loved how every chapter started off with a definition related to climbing, especially because I’m one of those people who has never gone rock climbing outside. Sure, I’ve done my fair share of indoor climbing, but Sophie’s memoir has shown me that there’s a whole other world of climbing that I really know nothing about.
Oh, and did I mention the love story yet? I loved it. I ate it up. I loved her relationship with David, and her snarky comments about Americans who love studying abroad, especially because I was one of them. Their love story really was one for the ages, and I loved that it was raw. She really didn’t fantasize it and I think that’s what made me love it even more.
Sophie’s book is a lot of things. It’s a memoir, a love story, a tragedy, and so much more. It has moments of heartbreak and moments of being on top of the world, and that’s what makes it so great.
After I finished reading, I was immediately inspired by Sophie. In her memoir, she’s 22, and I recently turned 22 a few months ago. My dream has always been to travel for a year straight, and Sophie’s memoir has pushed me to do that, at least once it’s safe again. She truly is inspiring and I found her wanderlust, bravery, and willingness to travel and try new things so awesome.
To be honest, I know that I have so many more great things to say about this memoir, but I don’t want to spoil everything for you!
If you’re looking for a memoir to read this summer, you have to pick up Sophie’s Don’t Fall; you won’t regret it, and you’ll find yourself more willing than ever to do new things once it’s finally over.
Sophie Smith has been writing, reading, and telling stories for as long as she can remember. Her first published work was a short story about a plucky girl saving an injured unicorn. Although it won a local writing contest for children, she was ineligible for the prize, as she was too young (she was ten at the time).
Sophie still considers this one of life’s great injustices.
After growing up in Australia, Sophie has traveled to over forty countries, and lived on three different continents, collecting stories along the way.