Sunday, March 3, 2013

Book Review: If I Stay

Title: If I Stay 
Author: Gayle Forman 
Release Date: April 2nd 2009 
SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads)
"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."       
“Sometimes you make choices in life and sometimes choices make you.” ―Gayle Forman, If I Stay

If I Stay is without a doubt one of the best books I have ever read. This was like a fresh breath of air from the usual YA dystopians I usually stick to.  

The story centers around Mia, a seventeen year old teenager. Mia’s has a great life- she has a rock star boyfriend who cares for her, is surrounded by a loving family, and recently

nails her audition to get into the distinguished Julliard music school. But one day, everything Mia has ever cared for is taken away from her in one swift moment in a car crash. Even as her battered, injured body is stuck in a coma, her spirit is somehow able to see and hear everything. She is left with a single choice, the hardest that she has ever had to make: if she should stay, if she should live even if everything she loves is gone.

One of the reasons I loved this book so much was because of the characters. Adam and Mia, the rest of Mia's family, they are so, so real. Forman's writing pulled me into Mia's world so much it was as if I was right beside her through the whole experience. If I Stay is one of those books where the writing pulls you into the characters’ world so much that you forget about your surroundings.

I especially loved the flashbacks. Without the flashbacks, the characters would have been pretty much one-dimensional. Having the flashbacks made the characters so much richer and more complex.  

me at the restaurant
I read the last fifth of this novel while waiting for food at a Chinese restaurant, and after finishing it I was an emotional, blubbery wreck drowning in my own tears. (quite awkward for people around me)

If I Stay is a heart-achingly beautiful and uplifting story about the ultimate power of friends, family, and choices. I highly recommend this to just about everyone! Note: when reading the last fifth of the novel, keep tissues handy. 

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