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If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Review Written by Guest Blogger Hannah

urlMia has always felt out of place even in her own family and she constantly struggles with feelings of not belonging. Her dad, Denny Hall, used to be in a rock band, her mom, Kat Hall, is tough as nails, plus her boyfriend, Adam, is also one of them-a rock and roll freak. Everyone around her seemingly has a rebellious streak, except her. Mia is a shy, quiet girl that doesn’t stand out much, but she has a magnificent talent- she plays the cello. When she first started she was worried what people would think of her, since she chose classical over rock, but everyone embraces her talent. After her audition for Julliard, she’s almost guaranteed acceptance. Adam’s band, “Shooting Star” is finally going somewhere. Both of them going places and their prospects looking good, she has hope for what the future will bring. Then in a blink of an eye her world is turned upside down. Her family is in a disastrous car wreck. Right after the wreak, Mia is transported into a ghost like form, she sees the world around her as if everything is fine but she soon realizes nobody in the real world can see her and everything is about polar opposite from being okay. At the scene of the wreak she sees her family’s bodies strewn on the pavement. Her earthly body is in a coma, on the brink of death. She is immediately transferred to the hospital and Mia decides to come. Her best friend, Kim and her boyfriend Adam come to see her, along with various family members that she loves. As each one of them comes to visit her lifeless body, she remembers some of the best memories in her life with each one of them in it. Her body has to go through numerous life-saving surgeries, but it’s all her decision. She has to decide if she wants to stay, to come back to her body and live, or to leave, to die, forget, and not have to live this impossibly hard life.


What Hannah Thought of If I Stay

I loved the book. It was truly one of the best books I’ve read so far. If you have enjoyed any of John Green’s books then this is the right book for you. It was a rollercoaster of emotions I thought. It was happy drastically sad at the same time. Gayle Forman has crafted this into something absolutely stunning. The characters in this book have many layers to them and you have to read the whole book just to figure each of them out. I think one of my favorite characters was either Adam or Kim. They both mean the world to Mia, and they were hilarious in If I Stay, they offered some much needed comic relief. Mia’s character was fantastic. After reading this, I felt a connection to all of the characters especially Mia. I almost felt like I had been right there next to Mia, going through the same things, so it was a very emotional book-especially for me. The plot was fantastic, I didn’t expect half of what happened (I won’t spoil anything), but it kept me interested the entire time. This book was one I never wanted to put down; I basically read it all in one day. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series, Where She Went, which is told in Adam’s POV. I have to say if you want a book with action, don’t read this unless you want to have a sob-fest.

I think one of the most memorable parts of the book is when Mia’s usually non-emotional grandfather comes to her bedside in the ICU. As he sits there he starts to weep. It’s not like the loud full blown-out kind, but the silent kind with tears just streaming down his face. In a hushed tone, he talks to Mia. He tells her that he understands it’s all her choice whether or not she lives. He says even though he wants her to stay and come back to him, he knows she might not want to and he gets that. This is the first time that anyone says something like this to her, most people just babbled on and on about what’s been happening in the world and in their lives. After hearing her grandfather say that to her, she starts to realize what she wants and her grandfather is the one that kind of gave her the choice. She learns it really is her choice.


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