Sunday, September 8, 2013

Book Review: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

If I Stay (If I Stay #1) by Gayle Forman

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.

Just Outstanding.

This was outstanding. I sped through this book in little over day (and I had a very busy day to boot) and it usually takes me at least a couple to read through a book.

It is a beautiful, deep, thought provoking read.

If I Stay gutted my heart little by little. One thing would happen and just when I would recover, another thing.

I know I am slightly behind the "phase" when this book was popular. So many of my bookish friends have already read it. If not, consider picking up a copy and giving it a chance. If you have, leave your review or let me know what you thought in the comments below.

First Thoughts:

I am not really sure if I can portray the meaning and emotions justly in a review. But, I will at least, give y'all some of my first thoughts:

This is my first book by Forman -- but if her others follow suit -- I'll be picking them up. Forman really has an art for creating well designed characters that I love.

The Best Family.

I loved Mia's family from Grandpa and Grandma to Mom and Dad to little brother. They were all unique and different but 'flowed' well together as a character group. All of their relationships seemed realistic and genuine.

Plus, it was so refreshing to read a book about a family that wasn't totally dysfunctional. Mia's parents -- different and cool ex-rockers -- really loved their family and made decisions that were best for the family.

More than once, I would read through a passage and think, Mia has good father (mother, grandpa, etc.) It was just a nice picture of a family unit. She has one of the best book dads that I may have ever read (okay,'s late here -- but he definitely is one of my favorites). His personality as an individual and a dad shined through.

Flashback Time.

And the flashbacks were bittersweet. The flashback would show different moments from their past. It was hard to compare that to their current situation.

Book Boyfriend Candidate

And Adam -- sigh -- sweet, edgy, romantic Adam. I understand now why I see him on so many book boyfriend lists.

He's definitely made my future list. He fits in with Mia's family, believes in being romantic, supports her dreams, and the two can sit in a comfortable silence. I could go on and on -- but don't want to give anything away -- so just know he is fabulous.

I need to read Where She Went soon -- but sequels sometimes make me a bit nervous. It's in Adam's POV and sounds like an amazing read though.

If I Stay resonated deeply with me. The subject matter is heavy and heart wrenching, but well done and well wrote. Not only was it a 5 star read for me, but it made my top-amazing-favorites list.


  1. Oh gosh, this one seriously hurt my heart. It's one of the first books in a long time that had me just sobbing as I read. I'm scared to read Where she went. I was supposed to since I've been reading Gayle Forman's books in a Gayle Forman read along but I didn't have time and then I was just not ready for my heart to hurt again! But yes. Loved this one!!

  2. Grrr, I still haven't read any of Gayle Forman's books. I don't even have a copy of any of them. I feel like I'm seriously missing out on what could be new additions to my favorites shelf. From what I've heard, this book and her others are just amazing.