Thursday, April 22, 2010

If I Stay

If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Dutton, 2009
196 pages
YA; Contemporary

Summary: Mia has a basically average life until one terrible morning when she's in a car accident. As her body lies in the ICU, she thinks over her life and tries to decide if she should stay...

Thoughts: While I had seen this book mentioned on many blogs, I did not really know what it was about. I thought it was about an abusive relationship where she couldn't decide to stay or go or her decision to go to a college across the country. Imagine my surprise when the main character is in a car crash that leaves her in intensive care and her parents dead! This was especially hard for me because I always worry about my family getting into an accident so it hit close to home for me.

I loved that Mia was a cellist (although viola is obviously the best instrument!) and that music was such a big part of the novel. It ponders big questions about death: will she be reunited with her family in the afterlife? What exactly happens to her? Will her living family be able to cope if she does die? I tend to read lighter novels that don't deal with this so that was certainly a change.

Reader Warning: There is some language, some peeks at the intimate relationship of Mia and Adam, and casual underage drinking.

Overall: I don't know how I feel about this. I haven't given it a rating yet and I don't know if I will be able to. I'm not sure if I want to read the impending sequel or if I would recommend it to anyone. I guess I'm not thrilled about it but I don't hate it. I'm sorry it's not much of a review but I didn't have strong feelings about this when I first finished it or even now a week later.

Edited: I'm giving it a 3.5/5 although I am still ambivalent.

To clarify: imagining losing my family=emotionally devastating; everything else about this book=decidedly meh.

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