Published: May 5th 2011, RHCB
Pages: 260 pages, paperback
Series?: Yes, this is the second and final installment
Acquired: Kindly sent for review by Random House
Summary (from Goodreads): It's been three years since the devastating accident . . . three years since Mia walked out of Adam's life forever.
Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Juilliard'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.
Told from Adam's point of view in the spare, lyrical prose that defined If I Stay, Where She Went explores the devastation of grief, the promise of new hope, and the flame of rekindled romance.
My review: Just like all of you I fell head first in love with Gayle Forman’s writing style when I read It I Stay, the prequel to Where She Went. I was desperate to find out what happened to Mia and Adam after the book finished so was so excited to receive a copy of Where She Went for review.
Where She Went is a very different book to If I Stay, though I think they complement each other perfectly. The tone in Where She Went is much darker, despite the content in If I Stay. It’s clear from page one that Adam is no longer then carefree teenager in an up and coming band that we met in book one. He’s achieved worldwide fame and huge success, though with it has grown increasingly bitter and angry at the world around him, especially after Mia cuts him out of her life for no apparent reason.
I really liked the structure of Where She Went - we find out what has happened since the end of If I Stay and Adam's memories of the past are mixed in with the present story. I think it was such a smart move of Forman's to tell the story through Adam's perspective, the book felt fresh but it was comforting to dip back into the world of characters I already knew and loved.
Where She Went is definitely an emotionally charged read, I found myself welling up on more than one occasion and definitely shed a few tears on the scene on the bridge - I don't want to give anything away about the plot so that's all I'll say. If you've read Where She Went hopefully you get what I mean – it was my favourite scene in the book and, in my opinion, an absolute masterpiece.
This is a beautiful book and the ending is perfect; I’m so glad Forman isn’t writing a third instalment, it just isn’t necessary. I adored both books in the series and it will always rank among my favourites. Forman is truly one of the strongest voices in YA and I can’t wait to see what she does next.
First line: ‘Every morning I wake up and I tell myself this: It’s just one day, one twenty-four-hour period to get yourself through.’
Total: 17/20 (A)