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if i stay

Posted on Apr 15, 2015 by in Book Reviews |

if i stay by gayle forman

“Mia had everything: a loving family, a gorgeous, adoring boyfriend, and a bright future full of music and full of choices. Then, in an instant, almost all of that is taken from her.

Caught between life and death, between a happy past and an unknowable future, Mia spends one critical day contemplating the only decision she has left-the most important decision she’ll ever make. -back of the book

I bought this book a long while ago, hoping for a meaningful story that will make me feel an impact. After months of stalling, I decided to catch up to the party and finally read this book and it was disappointing.

A brief summary of this book is this: girl has happy life, girl is in happy cliche family, girl is in the car driving with happy cliche family, boom car accident, girl is “unconscious”, girl is actually in a limbo deciding to live or not, how is this even, what, why all these flashbacks, oh woW YOU’RE AWAKE NOW?!

Still not convincing you that this isn’t a good book? Let me start reviewing for real now.

Let’s observe the plot…oh wait, THERE IS NONE?! In the beginning it was fine and the author was setting the stage. After the car accident scene? No. While our main character Mia is wondering about life, we have these flashbacks of memories. Sure, nice background information, let’s move on.

But then this happens continuously, Mia contemplating life, flashback, thinking about dying, flashback and so on. This did not appeal much to me, but I kept going only to end up with this half planned ending where she suddenly just wakes up. I felt no effort from the author to clean this up nicely, just the intent of her waking up.

Now time to bash the characters. They were flat and had no personality. I couldn’t care less what happened to Mia. Where was the development of relationships and characterization? Too many flashbacks and not enough experiencing moments are ourselves.

And that is what I believe what the main problems is. We don’t go through these happenings ourselves. If it’s simply the retelling of memories, you feel detached and not there. Personally, if I don’t feel as if I’m in the narrator’s shoes, it won’t leave an imprint on me. It wouldn’t matter what happened.

I wonder how this is even a movie? What actually happens? Is it the same as the book jumping abruptly from reality to the past?

Heh I feel super harsh about this book, but it is what I feel. I’m really let down after all the “hype” people had about this book.

1/5 million unnecessary recalling of memories