Sinful Book Reviews

I love romance and erotica. I read a good bit of MM romance and BDSM romance and erotica.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

If I Stay - Gayle Forman

I’ve been meaning to read this for quite a while. I was just browsing through the library and saw and thought now was as good a time as any. It’s not very long so it only took two days of commuting and driving around in Birmingham to finish.


First, I’m going to say this book is great and I highly recommend it. Second, if you decide to read it, I highly recommend tissues. You’re probably going to cry. I rarely cry during books anymore, and I teared up several times in this one. This book took me by surprise too. I have this tendency to add things to my TBR list and then read them months later without re-reading the synopsis, so I’ll have no clue what the book is about.


The plot is the type of think you’re more likely to see in a movie rather than read in a book. I could feel this way because I’ve never read a book that involves near-death experiences, not like this anyway. Though I think it’s more common in movies, I think this particular story would be difficult to make into a movie, since a good chunk of it is made up of memories. It’s the type of thing my mother would hate. She can’t stand books that jump around like this. I don’t mind at all. I think the memories are a crucial part of the story and I love learning more about Mia’s life and the people in it. I think the jumping around through various memories and the present flowed well. I never had a problem following it. It also keeps the pace going.


Mia is a great character. She’s intelligent and funny, and she has so much love for all the people in her life. She might be one of the best female characters I’ve come across in a book because she’s so down-to-earth. I really love Adam too. He seems like such a great guy and I can’t wait for the next book because it’s written from his perspective. Of course, I love that they’re both musicians, and the way music brings them together even though they’re interested in totally different things. They make this effort to understand each other’s world. It just makes me smile. Mia’s parents are also really great. They’re the total opposite of my parents, partly because my parents are much older. They’re so cool and tough. What I really love about them is that they’re the kind of parents Mia can talk to about anything. I think that’s so important in parenting.


Foreman’s writing has a touch of the lyrical, which I really love. It works well for this book. Her style works really well with the voice of this book. I really felt it enhanced the central theme of family and love. That’s definitely the message I got from it. Your family is what you make it. Blood and genetics have nothing to do with it. Mia had more family than her parents and brother. She had her best friend, Kim. She had her parent’s friends, Willow and Henry. She had Adam. Looking back through her memories, she sees the kind of love they gave her and she recognizes how much she loved them. They were her family. That love is the only thing that can save us from whatever situation we’re in. It’s a strong message, and Foreman does such a wonderful job communicating it.


EDIT: It was brought to my attention that I didn’t even mention the narrator. How could I forget that?! I’ll make up for that right now. I think Kirsten Potter did a wonderful job with this book. She put a lot of emotion into her voice and it made the effect of the words that much better. She sounds like she might be a little older than Mia, but she did such a great job that I didn’t mind at all.