Book Review: Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Title: Where She Went

Author: Gayle Forman

Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Romance, Contemporary

Format: Paperback

Publication Date: 5th April 2011

‘You were so busy trying to be my savior that you left me all alone.’

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It’s been three years since Adam’s love saved Mia after the accident that annihilated life as she knew it… and three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life forever. Now living on opposite coasts, Mia is Julliard’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.


So, when I finished If I Stay and heard there was a sequel, I said these words: ‘I had complete closure, and in my opinion there was nothing more to be said.’  I take them back, I take them all back!

Where She Went is Gayle Forman’s follow-up story to the heart-breaking journey of Mia Hall, who is made to choose whether to continue living, or to die, after losing her entire family in a car accident.  In the second book in the series, Adam is our narrator, and his band has finally made it big – he is a rock star.  But he isn’t happy.  Plagued by a lack of closure after Mia leaves for Julliard and stops returning his calls, he is feeling isolated from his friends and disconnected from his music.

I recently posted a review about Ugly Love, where I said how a romance novel often loses my interest if I’m not rooting for the main couple.  In my eyes, Adam and Mia are the perfect couple, because they are realistic.  They are awkward, funny, and share a passion for music – all qualities that make a match between them feel authentic.  So, understandably, I did have my worries about where the book would go, when a fifth of the way through, Mia and Adam see each other for the first time in three years.  In that time, both of their careers have taken off, and Adam has a new partner.

“You know, I thought about that a lot these last couple of years,” She says in a choked voice. “About who was there for you. Who held your hand while you grieved for all that you’d lost?”

I think the only reason this sequel worked was because Adam was the narrator.  Seeing the events from Adam’s point of view, seeing how he struggled with how Mia had left him, made me so sympathetic towards him, even though I could understand why Mia had done it.  Glimpsing into Adam’s head in this way was a stroke of genius on Gayle Forman’s part, and his perspective was very convincing. I didn’t even feel like Adam’s relationship with Mia was unnaturally obsessive (maybe others will perceive it differently), and he grew as a person when he finally saw her again and put his hurt to rest.  Romance, character development, lots of tears – I couldn’t have asked for more from the sequel to one of the best books I’ve read this year; I highly recommend it.

Star Rating: ★★★★★(5)

Anyone else read this? Anyone else shedding rivers of tears because of Gayle Forman?


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  1. 8th August 2015 / 4:48 pm

    I enjoyed If I Stay, but I’ve never read the sequel! Maybe I should. Great review! xx J

    • 8th August 2015 / 5:33 pm

      I wasn’t planning on reading the sequel but curiosity got the better of me! Thanks for the comment; you’ll have to let me know what you think of Where She Went if you do decide to read it.

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