Series review: If I Stay duology by Gayle Forman

I binge-read this duology a little while ago, so I thought I'd group the two reviews into one big post. Hope you enjoy!


If I Stay (If I Stay, #1)
Book title/Author: If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Publisher/Year: May 13th 2010 Definitions
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: If I Stay #1
Pages: 233
Source/Format: Paperback | Bought
Rating: 4 stars out of 5

*This review may contains spoilers!*

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, this will change the way you look at life, love, and family.

My review

This book is extremely popular in the YA world, and like with many other well-loved books, I held off on reading it for so long, even though I owned it for a couple of years. However, I finally took the plunge recently and I am so glad I did.

There are two things in this series that for me seemed the most important: music and family. I love both of these, especially in books, although I don't see too much of either. Although this book was mostly flashbacks, it really gave me an insight into Mia's relationships with all the members of her family, and with Adam too. When I started really getting into reading, I didn't know if I would enjoy reading books about music, because I couldn't experience it for myself sometimes, but it's one of my favourite things in a book, as well as a strong family relationship too.

Adam and Mia's relationship plays a big part in this book, so it couldn't really afford to be bad. Thankfully I loved reading about it, because Gayle's great writing made them seem perfect for each other; they had a real connection. Both Adam and Mia were so interesting to read about, which was good because for me there is nothing worse than a boring or unlikeable main character.

I'm so glad at last I read this book, and also that I enjoyed it so much. If you haven't read this book, then what are you waiting for?
Where She Went (If I Stay, #2)
Book title/Author: Where She Went by Gayle Forman
Publisher/Year: April 26th 2012 Definitions
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: If I Stay #2
Pages: 260
Source/Format: Paperback | Bought
Rating: 4 stars out of 5

*This review may contain spoilers!*


Synopsis

It's been three years since Adam's love saved Mia after the accident that annihilated life as she knew it ...and three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life forever. Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Julliard's rising star and Adam is LA tabloid fodder, thanks to his new rock star status and celebrity girlfriend. When Adam gets stuck in New York by himself, chance brings the couple together again, for one last night. As they explore the city that has become Mia's home, Adam and Mia revisit the past and open their hearts to the future - and each other. 

My review

When I heard that this book was told from Adam's perspective, I was a bit wary because although I liked him as a character, I didn't know whether I would like reading from his perspective or not. It turns out that I actually really did, and possibly more than Mia.

A lot of people gave this book average reviews because they got frustrated with Adam's constant whining, but I thought it was justified. Obviously I don't know what it's like to be an A-list rock star, but I can understand the feeling of it being too much for someone.

This book is very different to If I Stay, which is good because after I read it I didn't think it needed a sequel. However after reading Where She Went I really think it added another dimension to this story and I'm glad Gayle decided to write it. I don't think I would've enjoyed this book nearly so much if it was told in Mia's perspective 3 years in the future, rather than Adam's. It really showed me that Adam grieved just as much as Mia, even if it was in a different way and for different things.

I thoroughly enjoyed this duology, and I definitely want to read Gayle's other books too now.

Izzy

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