May 19, 2012

Review: Where She Went

By: Gayle Forman
Published: April 2011 by Dutton
Format: Hardback, 260 pages
First Reviewed: May 2011
Buy: Barnes & Noble//Books-A-Million//Amazon//Book Depository
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It's been three years since the devastating accident . . . three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life forever.

Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Juilliard's rising star and Adam is LA tabloid fodder, thanks to his new rock star status and celebrity girlfriend. When Adam gets stuck in New York by himself, chance brings the couple together again, for one last night. As they explore the city that has become Mia's home, Adam and Mia revisit the past and open their hearts to the future–and each other.
Told from Adam's point of view in the spare, lyrical prose that defined If I Stay, Where She Went explores the devastation of grief, the promise of new hope, and the flame of rekindled romance.

Rating: 5/5

Sequel to If I Stay. I don't even know where to begin, what to say. For now, all I want to do is sit down and cry. Cry for so many incredible reasons. This book was simply breathtaking.

When I read If I Stay yesterday, I loved it. I have my nit-picks of course, but the feeling I got from the story was amazing and so full of emotion. I didn't know it was possible to top that kind of emotion, but Forman did. From the moment I started this book, I had a tugging at my heart. That lasted until now, and I have a feeling it'll be there for a good while.

Just...gosh, I don't know what to say. Maybe starting with the technical will help: The writing and characterization improved so much that I felt as though I were reading a book by a different author (I did find some errors, though; ahem, editors). It was really incredible. The way Forman made me feel for both Adam and Mia was so much stronger than If I Stay. These characters felt so real.

Honestly, I don't have many nit-picks at all. They're just not worth mentioning. For a book to leave this kind of feeling in my heart--this sense of joy, sadness, love all in one--is something I crave from books. I don't get it often. If I Stay left an impression, of course, but it was nothing compared to this. To be honest, I don't think I've ever had this type of feeling throughout an entire book and after.

Forgive the repetitive, probably-unhelpful review. I'm just speechless. Completely speechless. This is a must-read, even more so than its predecessor. So if you for some reason didn't care for the first book, I highly recommend picking this up. You won't regret it. It's heart-wrenching, breath-taking, beautiful, and tells a story that will stay with you forever. Don't forget tissue.

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