Reviews

From the magazines

Intensely moving, the novel will force readers to take stock of their lives and the people and things that make them worth living.
Publishers Weekly, starred review
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Forman excels at inserting tiny but powerful details throughout, including the realistic sounds, smells and vocabulary of a hospital, which will draw readers into this masterful text and undoubtedly tug at even the toughest of heartstrings.
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Forman provides a compelling and highly textured account of the brutal 24 hours that may be 17-year-old Mia’s last. Mia’s recounting of this critical day is laced with insight, good humor, and wonder, allowing the reader to enter the scene as fully as Mia herself. Mia’s story will engage readers willing to suspend their disbelief that the future can be seen in the present.
Booklist, starred review

Original and exciting, it is a novel about relationships, life and the people involved in both. The characters are tangibly real, the plot is fascinating and will cause the pages to turn rapidly. Teens and adults will find themselves falling in love with Forman’s stunning novel.
VOYA

Forman follows the heroine’s movement, like a bow against the strings of her cello, between the two choices. The author endows the narrative with as much humor as poignancy and lays bare the challenges Mia has encountered in each of her relationships as well as the breakthroughs, leaving readers in suspense until the final bars.
Shelf Awareness
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IF I STAY is a tearjerker that works because it is both heartfelt and tightly constructed. Teen readers should…join booksellers in embracing this fantastic new book.
Publishers Weekly (Galley Cat Review)
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A touching and emotional examination of love in all its forms … and the choices, and sacrifices, we sometimes have to make for love. Incredibly sad, but life affirming and heart warming, everyone who has ever had to make a difficult choice involving things they love should read this book. I challenge any of you not to cry on the final few pages.

The Bookbag (UK)
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From the blogosphere:

One of the best books I have ever read. The story is so powerful that sometimes I laughed and sometimes I cried but I simply could not stop turning the pages.

Flamingnet
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This novel is about love. Love for your family and the family you make for yourself. The strength to follow your passion, to love your parents unconditionally and they for you, to have belief in people, to embrace music and life. It is also about choice, when no two options are easy, what would you do?

Persnickety Snark
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From booksellers:

IF I STAY is heartbreaking and heartwarming at the same time. It’s a testimony to the beauty of family and friendship that moved me as a mother, as a daughter, and as friend. This novel will stay with me for a long, long time.

Cathy Berner, Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston TX

This story evokes the popular adult novel, The Lovely Bones. [IF I STAY] looks at the reasons we keep on breathing. It explores the power of love, family, and romance. It challenges readers to think about how they choose to be in their lives. Mia has to choose too. Poignant, sad, affirming—a novel well worth reading.

Anne Holman, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City UT

In an instant, Mia’s life becomes something she no longer recognizes.  All of the agonizing decisions that came with her last year of high school are reduced to one simple choice, and she must look back at her life to determine which things are most important to her.  Alternating between past and present narratives, Gayle Forman builds Mia’s life piece by piece.  Mia becomes much more than a character – she is a girl with a family, friends, a great love, and an incredible talent.  A roller coaster of emotion, I found myself struggling with the same choice that Mia must make.  I couldn’t put this book down.

Jake Hallman, A Great Good Place for Books, San Francisco CA

From the Hollywood people:

IF I STAY is one of those great rare books with a deeply authentic voice that can speak for and move a generation.  Not since TWILIGHT have we seen as emotionally moving a book for a youth audience with this kind of crossover appeal.

Eric Feig, of Summit Entertainment, which has optioned film rights for If I Stay (and is the studio behind the Twilight movies)

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