If I Stay
Author: Gayle Forman
Publication Date: April 26th, 2010
Synopsis:In the blink of an eye everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces- to figure out what she has lost, what she has left, and the very difficult choice she must make. Heartwrenchingly beautiful, Mia's story will stay with you for a long, long time.
My Thoughts: If I Stay hits hard right from the beginning. There is no easing into the heartache in this story, we are tossed right into it and we ride that incredibly emotional wave until the very end.
The story starts off with the tragic event this entire story revolves around. The car accident that involved Mia's entire family. Mia is wandering around the scene taking in what seems to be a nightmare when she thinks she sees her brother's hand sticking out the car window. She walks over to grab hold of it only to find she is grabbing her own hand. But how can she be in the car, and outside the car at the same time? Mia is lost in a realm that is between life and death. Throughout the story we get flashbacks and peeks into the life she has been leading. She comes from a family that I think we all wish we could have been part of. The closeness was definitely something to be envied. As Mia watches her family members mourn, she is left with the decision; should she go back even though she would be all alone, or should she move on into whatever comes after death?
This story will break your heart on a whole new level. My eyes welled up on many an occasion. Especially in the one on one moments where her family members were talking to her comatose self and Mia was actually there listening. Those moments were seriously hard to bear. Forman has captured these heart breaking emotions in a way that I have seen no Author do before. If you can handle roller coaster emotions and to feel your own heart break, then I seriously recommend you read this story. I only picked this book up twice. I started reading it the afternoon after I bought it, then put it down to do things with my children. I was up early in the morning before my kids and I picked it back up and finished it. It's a book worth getting up early to finish.
Prepare to embark on an emotional journey like no other. I am so glad I bought the sequel at the same time because I cannot wait to find out what happens next. If you do read this I recommend you also have the second on hand because the ending is such a cliffhanger!! All in all, it's an incredibly beautiful story about love, loss and life. About the choices we make in life and where they lead us, and sometimes some choices are so hard we wish someone else could make them for us.
I can thank Jenn for my purchase of this book, after her review (here), I felt so compelled to get my hands on this book and I am so glad I did! That's two 5 hoot reviews from Owl Read It, we seriously think you should go read it.