Book Review: If I Stay

If I Stay CoverBook: If I Stay by Gayle Forman|Narrated by Kirsten Potter

Published April 2009|Published by Listening Library

Audio Book|Borrowed from the library|4 hours 58 minutes

Series? Yes, If I Stay #1

Genre: YA/Contemporary

Goodreads|Barnes And Noble|Amazon|Gayle Foreman’s Website

Goodreads Summary: The last thing Mia remembers is the music. After the accident, she can still hear it. And she can see her damaged body being taken from the wreck of her parents’ car – even though she doesn’t feel a thing. 

All she can do is watch as doctors rush to save her life, as her friends and relatives gather outside her room, as the boy she loves struggles to be near her. 

As the next twenty-four hours unfold, Mia must come to terms with what came before the crash – and what would come after. And she knows she must make the most difficult choice of all. If she stays…

When I saw If I Stay available at the library, I knew I had to check it out!  And I pretty much checked it out because I’ve heard a lot of really good things, and wanted to know why people loved it so much.

At first, I wasn’t sure about If I Stay.  You get a little bit of Mia’s life and then the accident happens.  You do get a lot of flashbacks, so you get a great picture of what her life was like before the accident.

I was reminded of The Lovely Bones while listening to If I Stay.  So if you liked The Lovely Bones, you will probably like If I Stay.  I think it’s that Mia and Susie are watching things happen- Susie from heaven, and Mia wandering around the hospital.  But while Susie has already died, Mia has to make the decision of whether she wants to live or die.  I didn’t get a huge sense of it being a hard decision to make, because it mostly felt like Mia was reliving life before the accident.  Yes, her parents and younger brother died, and maybe she wasn’t sure what she wanted to do because of that, but it didn’t really come through for me.  But her grandpa giving her permission to die- if that’s what she wanted- was touching, in it’s own weird way.  Although, you do see how memories play a role in her decision, so maybe her decision came through…just not in a way I would have expected.

I was trying so hard to not cry at the end- which is what you get when you listen to an audiobook in public, and don’t want people to think you’re crazy by crying out of nowhere.  Still, I did get pretty teary-eyed.

Speaking of the audio, Kirsten Potter did a wonderful job narrating.  She really brought things to life, and there was definitely a lot of emotion throughout the book.  The book worked really well as an audiobook, so I’m glad I listened to it.

If I Stay was fairly short, and I do think it could have been a little longer.  I get why the book ended the way it did, and anything past the ending really wouldn’t have fit.  I really am looking forward to reading the sequel, Where She Went, because I really want to know how things work out for Mia and what life is like for her!  Seriously, I NEED TO KNOW!

Final Thoughts:

Okay, I love how simple the cover is!  And it actually…kind of makes sense.  Plus, the title is absolutely perfect for the book!  So, I really liked If I Stay, which was narrated so well!  Plus, Mia making the decision she does…so sad at times.  Seriously, choosing to live or die?  If I Stay gets 4 stars.


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