Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Review: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Publisher: Dutton
Goodreads Synopsis:

In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen year- old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck...

A sophisticated, layered, and heartachingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make -and the ultimate choice Mia commands.


I read this a while ago, a little before the second book came out. I'd heard a lot about it from other authors and reviewers, most saying how good it was, how much they enjoyed it. (Kiersten White especially.) I was a little wary, because it didn't sound as good, but I didn't like it as much as most people seemed to.
I did still really like it. I mostly liked the authors take on moving on, and how Mia was like a ghost while her body was in a coma. I've always found these kinds of things interesting, and wonder about them like most people do.
I probably liked this book as much as I did because of her take on that. I liked how Mia walked around and watched her family and friends. I liked most things about the book, really, except for a few things in the plot.
I liked her writing. It flowed very smoothly, and it was simple but still pretty. It kept me reading, and I didn't want to put it down. I finished it in a day, I think.
I didn't particularly feel for Mia, but I did like her enough. I did like her thoughts on all of the things she saw and what she was doing. I liked going through her memories especially. I liked how Forman did that, too. Put the book together like she did, with going back into memories as she's doing things. It was done very nicely. I did get a feel for why Mia was doing and feeling how she was, even if I didn't feel like she should be having such a problem choosing to stay or not. It didn't feel like there was much question as to whether she would stay or not, but that might have been because I already knew how it was going to end.
I definitely did feel her connection with Adam, and her friendship with Kim, and how close she was with her family. I liked all of her memories with them, and I genuinely liked all of them. Because of how well all of that was done probably also made it seem like there was no question as to whether she was going to stay or not, even with her parents and brother gone. Which, by the way, sucked. That was probably the saddest part of the book, aside from seeing her friends and family grieving for them and her.
The ending was open, but I didn't have much doubt on how I thought it had ended. But because there's a sequel, or companion if you rather, I figured that obviously something had gone wrong... I'm not going to get too into that, actually. Because I've already read it and will be writing the review of it soon, so I will talk about that in there.
Anyway. So, I actually did really like this book. Almost everything about it, really. I would probably even recommend it.

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