If I Stay (If I Stay #1) by Gayle Forman
Series: If I Stay #1
Author: Gayle Forman
Published: 2nd Aprill 2009 by Dutton Juvenile
Source: Hardback copy from my local library
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.
If I Stay was gorgeously heartbreaking. I can't believe all the different emotions that were held within those few pages.
As soon as I began this book I prepared myself to cry. I didn't know the story, hadn't had a good look at the synopsis, but just from the bits I'd gleamed from others' reviews I knew I was in for an emotional ride.
I really enjoyed the characters in this book, I didn't have to know them long to feel a connection. We didn't really meet many people, only through Mia's memories, but I still loved each and every one of them. I think the way the book was written, fit really well with the tone and emotions that were trying to be put across. The mix of the ghostly 'watching' of the people around Mia and living through her memories was brilliant.
I was just quietly following this story, not getting all emotional like I'd expected but then, within the last 50 pages or so, Mia's grandfather started to cry. He cried silently telling Mia that as much as they all wanted her to stay, it was okay if she didn't, he would understand; and that's when I got fully sucked in. Tears welled in my eyes and I was absolutely hooked.
It took me a while to work out the title of the book. Only after 'If I Stay' had been spoken did I understand what it meant, and that added a whole new dimension to the book. This book was powerful but it was also a gentle, soft read. My emotions ranged from calm to bawling-my-eyes-out heartbreaking, but it was great and I'm excited for more by Gayle Forman!