Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Book Review: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeenyear- 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.

What i thought: This book is very good. It is an extremely intense story that will not only appeal to teens, with a lot of crossover adult appeal, too, but not enough to force it into one specific group. Gayle Forman does an excellent job going from Mia's present to Mia's past and drawing the reader in so they truly understand her love for the cello, her family, and Adam, her boyfriend. As I was reading, I could not shake the feeling that i really was getting to know Mia and her loved ones. I also eventually found myself grieving along with Mia--the writing is just that powerful.

Despite how much i loved the story as well as the writing, at times i found myself very frustrated and hardly able to resist skipping ahead because of the flashbacks. When another flashback came along, i couldnt keep myself from groaning aloud. It was almost as if Forman was stalling--no, not really stalling. It was sort of like she knew it was too short so she just added in all of these things that i honestly did not care to read. I really just wanted to get on with the present--because, i feel that out of the 196 pages, about 126 were spent in flashbacks. And, really, the hook in the beggining is just fabulous, but . . . i really just wanted to stick to the story. I mean, i truly did not care about the time that they had an accidental Labor Day party. Not that i mean this in a rude way . . . but i seriously was just about to throw the book at the wall. I was constantly looking ahead for when it would go back to the present time, then counting down the pages until i would get there.

I really think that you should never have to do that when reading a good book.

Not that this is not a good book. Really, i did love it--but i loved the present and the characters. I disliked the flashbacks of the past. That is not to say that you should not read this--because your really should--but, dont say i didnt warn you.

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7 comments:

NotNessie said...

Thanks for the review. I'm looking forward to reading this.

As a rule, I don't enjoy books that have a lot of flashbacks. One or two can be great, but too many of them makes the book feel choppy to me.

Insert Book Title Here said...

Great review! I love that cover!

Leah:) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leah:) said...

NotNessie: I like that rule:) jk lol

Insert Book Title Here: Thanks! I like the cover, too. The words are all glossy and sparkly

Thanks for commenting, guys!

Leah:)

Jen said...

The cover is so pretty! This book looks really good ^_^

Sadako said...

This looks awesome--love the cover, too. I actually do like flashbacks so hopefully I'll enjoy this!

France said...

Gayle Forman does an excellent job going from Mia's present to Mia's past and drawing the reader in so they truly understand her love for the cello, her family, and Adam, her boyfriend. As I was reading, I felt like I really got to know Mia and her family and found myself grieving along with Mia - the writing is just that powerful.
IF I STAY is a short read, but it packs so much in and I wanted to savor every moment. At times I found myself reading slower and drinking in the words because I didn't want the story to end.

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