Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Where She Went

This is the sequel to If I Stay, which is kind of ironic because the fact that there even IS a sequel is a major spoiler for the end of If I Stay. I feel guilty posting spoilers, but it's not my fault that just because a book exists it's a spoiler. :D

I thought If I Stay was beautiful and poetic, and this sequel really lives up to that. I wanted to know more about Adam and Mia because the ending of If I Stay is so sudden. I just really loved the theme behind these two books - life, mortality, love, family, grief, adversity. It's really nothing like so many of the other YA books out there. It's serious, but funny. Clever but not in an irritatingly over-the-top way. There's something simple and attractive about these that I just love. The story is told very similarly to If I Stay, with a lot of flashbacks. There's so much character depth in this book. I love Mia's family and how they're still a big part of this book, despite, well... things. Anyway, Adam is the narrator of this book and (being a songwriter) his lyrics are at the beginning of each chapter. I've seen this device tried in other novels (Timeless by Alexandra Monir comes to mind - she includes lyrics written by her characters... oh, and so does Maggie Stiefvater in her Linger series), but none of them succeed like Gayle Forman. She really is a poet. Just a breathtaking use of words.

The only drawback to this book is the language. There's some serious swearing in here, including several casual uses of the "F" bomb. I so wish these could have been left out! It's the only drawback I can find to this lovely series.

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