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Saturday, June 11, 2011

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

I was happy that I had not heard anything about this book before I read it because apparently it was a much-hyped, well-loved book.  When that happens I have a hard time being objective and either I fall in line with everyone else's opinion or I become the nay-sayer.  I don't really like either choice.  I read this one in anticipation of reading  Where She Went  which I have on hold at the library. 
Mia, and her boyfriend Adam, are seniors and musicians which means that they are trying to figure out life after high school.  Adam is a rocker whose band is starting to do well in their home state of Oregon and Mia is a cellist with hopes of going to Julliard.  After being in a horrific crash, Mia is in a coma.  She has a prolonged out-of-body experience wherein she wanders the halls of the hospital and listens in on the conversations of family and friends.  She discovers that she has the choice of whether or not to live.  She ponders this choice, and thinks about her life both past and future.  In this way, we get to learn more about her family and friends. 
I suggest reading this book and it's sequel together because, although we have a pretty good idea what Mia's decision is, the book doesn't really feel complete.  It is a short book, not quite 200 pages, and reads quite quickly.  I liked the story, and most of the characters, but was dissatisfied with the brevity of it.  I liked that it wasn't like all the other young adult novels, that it discussed death and choices and the possibility of an afterlife.
Problems:  Too many f-words and a little more sex than I care for in a young adult novel.  Rated R.

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