July 09, 2009

If I Stay - Gayle Forman

I first read about If I Stay over at DoveGreyReader and then over at Dot's Blog - both reviews had me eager to read this book so I ordered a copy from Amazon only to find it days later in bookshops in Australia! Oh well - my copy is hardcover and gorgeous so I have come to terms with it!

This is one of those books where it is hard to describe the plot, structure and techniques of the book without giving away the core message that you need to discover in your own time as you read it yourself so I will just give you the description as outlined on the author's website:

“Just listen,” Adam says with a voice that sounds like shrapnel.
I open my eyes wide now. I sit up as much as I can. And I listen.
“Stay,” he says.
Choices. Seventeen-year-old Mia is faced with some tough ones. Stay true to her first love—music—even if it means losing her boyfriend and leaving her friends and family behind?
Then, one February morning Mia goes for a drive with her family, and in an instant, everything changes. Suddenly, all the choices are gone, except one. And it’s the only that matters.
If I Stay is a heartachingly beautiful book about the power of love, the true meaning of family, and the choices we all make.

I found this book incredibly moving and powerful - and it actually does take quite a bit to move me! The writing is spot on and while the book is intended as a young adult book I don't think it would be out of place on the adult fiction shelves.

Highly recommended!


claire said...

I saw this at dovegeryreader and Dot's Blog too. Now another recommendation from you. Your cover is lovely, btw. :D

Samantha said...

Nice to catch up after my two week absence. I am following your Austen challenge reading with notebook in hand!

I saw the Reservation Road movie and it was very good and am now disappointed I did not start with the book first. Though I see there are many more of Yates' books to choose from (and the retro covers are very nice!)

I also just saw Forman's book in the bookshop and it definitely went onto my wishlist - great to read that you enjoyed it so much.

Anonymous said...

Sounds really good! Havent seen it anywhere yet but here

verity said...

I think this looks really interesting; must look out for it.

Paperback Reader said...

I loved this book (I too saw it on dovegreyreader's blog) and posted about it here:


It is one of my favourite books of the year so far. It was so unexpectedly engrossing and poignant.

Tara said...

It is really hard to describe this book without giving everything away! So glad you liked this.

Unknown said...

I've seen this mentioned a few times and was thinking about getting it, but then I saw the book trailer here:
and that has put me off! I'm still not sure about it. Maybe one day the reviews will swing me back again, but for now that trailer is keeping me away!

Karen said...

Hi Claire - It is a gorgeous cover - I think it represents the book really well too which is something I always like.

Hi Samantha - Welcome back! If you have any recommendations for the Austen challenge please pass them on!
There are plenty of Yates to choose from - I have only read the two so far but will be looking out for others. I will watch the RR road movie too - just giving myself a little bit of space between the drama!

Hi Bookjourney - definitely keep an eye out for this one.

Hi Verity - definitely!

Hi Paperback Reader - so glad to hear that you loved this one too. I don't think I have heard of anyone not liking it??

Hi Tara - it was really hard! I realise my post is so vague and probably very annoying but I couldn't think of another way to do it!

Hi farmlanebooks - I have just watched the trailer and I see what you mean - it is a bit wishy-washy and I don't think it actually really represents the core of the book all that well either.

Dot said...

Thanks for linking to my blog, sorry that it has taken me so long to comment but I've not beent too well. I'm so glad that you enjoyed this book, it is so difficult to describe without giving too much away. Great review and the cover of yours is lovely!

Karen said...

Hi Dot - thanks for your review which led me to read this one in the first place! I hope you are feeling better now?

Anonymous said...

I'll definitely be checking this one out soon -- I've read so many great reviews :)

Karen said...

Hi Meg - I'm looking forward to hearing what you think of this one!