Book Review – “If I Stay” by Gayle Forman

imagesIf I Stay, by Gayle Forman, is basically one of the most heart wrenching novels I’ve ever read. I got so attached to Mia, the protagonist, and cried anytime she had an even remotely sad thought. I fell in love with Adam, her boyfriend, as her entire relationship played out before me from the beginning.

The book is written a bit weirdly. Mia’s family died in a car crash. Mia was also in the car and was critically injured. The story follows Mia as she makes the decision whether or not she decides to stay on earth and live or whether she wants to die and join her family. The story is set in two different times, Mia reliving her past (whether with Adam or her family) and Mia as she watches herself undergo surgery.

The story is like an emotional roller-coaster. One second I was laughing at a funny memory and the next I am crying after Mia receives heartbreaking news. I cried for a good fifty percent of the book (but that might have something to do with the fact that I am apparently a big sook who cries at everything). The novel is so well written it’s really hard to remember that I am not Mia.

I think that If I Stay is appropriate for people over the age of twelve purely because of the overwhelming tear factor I felt throughout the whole book. I also think it is directed more towards girls mainly because I can’t see either my brother or my dad enjoying it. I think this is a “chick flick” book like The Notebook or My Sisters Keeper.


If I stay by Gayle Forman is book based around how one decision can have a major impact on your life. The main character Mia, a senior school student, is involved in a car accident where her life has been affected in irreparable  ways. It is ultimately up to Mia to decide whether she dies or whether she lives.

Mia’s inner soul is watching over her body in the hospital, analysing the life she had and the life she will have if she lives. Her interactions with her boyfriend Adam, her family members and her best friend Kim, aid in her making the ultimate decision, one I hope never to make.

Yes it was an emotional book but I found I couldn’t relate to the characters in the first half of the book and only began to understand them in the later half. It was an easy read, even though it contained serious themes. Would recommend it but be ready for a slow start.

cheers natalie


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  1. […] If I Stay was a really touching movie. Since I’m a teenage girl I found myself really emotionally invested in the characters. I fell in love with Adam as Mia did. I cried, multiple times, all throughout the movie. As a real “sook” (as mum likes to refer to me) I always seem to find myself crying over any sort of hard-hitting emotional scene. […]

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