Book Reviews

Books I’m Devouring: If I Stay by Gayle Forman

The latest book I’m reading and devouring is If I Stay by Gayle Forman.  if I stayIt reminds me of The Lovely Bones or Before I Fall, both books told from the point of view of a teenage girl who’s just died and still has one foot in the door of the living.  What I loved about If I Stay is that the main character, Mia, has to make a choice about waking up out of her coma after a tragic accident and living life without her family who died in the car wreck or surrendering to the pain and letting herself fade away.  She doesn’t make the decision until the very end, which keeps the reader on the edge of their seat.  But the journey from beginning to end is poetic.  For anyone who’s lost a loved one, this book is cathartic.  It’s beautiful in the way Gayle moves through Mia’s various emotions and those of her friends and family.

My friends know that I lost two people in my life, both in their twenties, in car accidents.  So in a way this book was incredibly hard to read.  Emotional for me personally.  But it also felt like a little bit of the fissures of their absences healed while reading this.  It was hard to delve back into the feeling of losing them, especially what that first day felt like.  However, it was good to remember them in such a personal way and to let some of the bottled emotions out.

I’ve heard this book is being made into a movie, and I can’t wait to see it.  If you’ve read this book as well, I’m interested in hearing what you thought of it.  Too sad?  Or  uplifting?

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