Wednesday, 28 July 2010


Genre: Contemporary Fiction

Published by: Black Swan (May 2010)

Pages: 271 (Paperback)

My Rating: 8/10


One minute 17 year old Mia is riding in the car with her mum, dad and little brother enjoying a day out to visit family - the next minute she is standing next to a car that has been eviscerated, even though she can still hear the music of Beethoven's Cello Sonata No. 3 playing on the radio. Her parents are lying dead and she can see someone's hand sticking out which she thinks is her brother's, until she realises that it's hers.........

This all happens very early in the story and, as Mia watches the paramedics work on her and take her to the hospital, she wonders if she's dead or alive as she can't feel anything. We move on to the hospital ward and Mia, who is narrating the story, alternates between watching the nurses, doctors, friends and family visiting her and looking back over her life.

"If I stay. If I live. It's up to me."

My Thoughts:

This was a thought-provoking book and it certainly made me think about life and death and what I would do in Mia's position.

The story went back and forth in time and I liked the way the author handled this, with just the right amount of time being devoted to each timeline without getting bored.

Mia was a lovely person, and I did like her but I thought she should have grieved more for her parents, they were an important part of her life, but it just seemed unreal to me that she hardly mentioned them at all.

An interesting look at the choices we make in our lives.

Finally, at the end of the book Gayle Forman has given us an insight into 'the story behind the story' which is fascinating. And there's also a nice interview with her in a question and answer session for further reference.

The website for Gayle Forman can be found here

I read this book as part of the Transworld Dan Brown Summer Reading Challenge.

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