Friday 10 May 2013

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

If I Stay (If I Stay #1)
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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 heart-achingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make, and the ultimate choice Mia commands.

My thoughts

I didn’t know what to expect from this book, besides it being sad. Surprisingly, it wasn’t. Well, not that much anyway, because it was sad. But this book is just as much about life as it is about death, and that life can be worth choosing even though it seems there’s nothing left to live for. I was also surprised by how much I liked the book. No, loved this book! It was absolutely amazing, and I think Forman's writing is equally amazing. She made everything and everyone seem so real. I also really liked how she weaved past and present together, showing Mia's life before the accident through her memories. It never felt forced, and I was never bothered by it, on the contrary - I loved every single bit of Mia's memories. After the accident I liked that Mia was mostly detached from everything, her injuries, her loss. Like she was floating above, looking from the outside, never really comprehending. Otherwise I think it would have been way too emotional, or more emotional than it was, anyway. But then there's this moment where she suddenly acknowledge or understand everything... and it was so gutwrenching.

I think Mia was a great character, but I find it difficult to explain why I liked and admired her so much. She was a quiet sweet person with a certain calmness about her. But at the same time she had an inner strength and she was very stubborn. She faced some hard choices; first before the accident where she had to choose whether to follow her dream as a musician and go to Julliard or stay with her family and the love of her life; and then after the accident the choice remains, should she stay.. or go?
While I was reading, I couldn't help wondering what I would do in Mia's situation. Would I want to stay behind? And what would make me stay behind, if everything seemed lost? But then, through Mia, you see all the things that's left to live for. All through the book I awaited Mia's decision and what would make her choose. I think whichever she chose, I would understand, and that's one of the things I loved about this book; that I could truly emphasize with Mia.

Actually, I loved all the characters in this book. Adam was simply perfect, both from Mia's memories before the accident and everything he did afterwards. He was so sweet and he cared so much about Mia, and he would do everything for her - even if it meant doing the one thing he would never want to do. Mia's parents, who were just so funny, real and awesome, her brother Teddy, their friends, Mia's best friend. And of course Gramps. He didn't say all that much, but when he spoke to Mia - well, he got through alright.

I would most definitely recommend this book. Really, you must go read this book. It's a very stunning book, and so much more than I ever expected. But I have to warn you; you'll probably want to have the sequel, Where She Went, close by when you finish this, because you'll want to tear right into it.
A new favorite of mine.

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 


  1. I'm glad you loved this one! I'm a big fan as well. I just read If I Stay a couple of months ago and I really need to get my hands on a copy of Where She Went. :)

    1. I loved Where She Went too, and I really liked getting Adam's POV. I'll have the review up for it sometime next week. I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did!