If I Stay

If I Stay

Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Pages: 201
Release Date: April 9, 2009
Rating: 2/5 Stars


Wow. Just wow. I have never been so disappointed by a popular book before as I was reading this. It could have been really good, and the truth is I started reading it when the trailer for the film came out because it looked like a good story.

Unfortunately, it was just not for me. Instead of being drawn into the story I found myself consistently confused and unable to read with ease. Usually, I can sit down and read a good book within a couple of days, but I had to force myself to read this book and that was because I had hoped it would improve.

It didn't. While I am a hopeless romantic who looks a good cheesy movie, this book was just too much for me. I couldn't tell what was a dream, a reality, a memory. It was all too confusing for me to follow and by the end of it I was just annoyed. There were several quotes from the story that just had me shaking my head in disbelief. Playing their bodies like a cello or a guitar? What does that even mean? It was actually embarrassing to read these parts, it made me uncomfortable because it was so unrealistic.

Just listen, Adam says with a voice that sounds like shrapnel." What? How does a voice sound like shrapnel? That just doesn't even make sense to me either. There were several moments like this throughout that book that just had me more puzzled than intrigued. 

The Story: There were good components of the story and like I said overall I think it could have been really amazing. For me, it just wasn't. I was sad for the situation, it was emotional and upsetting. A girl struggling between choosing whether to allow herself to live, or die and join those she's already lost in her tragedy.   

Recommend: If you like stories that have a lot of flashbacks and back and forth, then you would probably like this story more than I did, but I am more partial to a consistent flow.