Wednesday, January 28, 2015

I Was Here by Gayle Forman

Title: I Was Here
Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Publication date:  January 27, 2015
Pages: 288
Source/format: ARC from Emma of Miss Print

Rating: ☆☆☆ 

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Cody and Meg were inseparable. 
Two peas in a pod. 
Until . . . they weren’t anymore.

When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.

I Was Here is Gayle Forman at her finest, a taut, emotional, and ultimately redemptive story about redefining the meaning of family and finding a way to move forward even in the face of unspeakable loss.

My Thoughts:

Cody and Meg were best friends until Meg took her life. Cody didn't expect this to happen and her life starts falling apart. At first she thought the e-mail was a hoax. But then she finds out that maybe there was something or someone that pushed Meg over the edge.

The first two pages hit me hard. I knew a little bit of the synopsis but I didn't know that the suicide letter was going to be the first paragraph of the novel. Although a tough issue to tackle, Gayle Forman writes with emotion and writes a novel that you can't put down. I have never read anything by Forman and I am glad I was able to read I Was Here. I am usually not one for very emotional books but this one hit me hard in the chest. I seriously couldn't sleep because I kept thinking about the book.

I think it has to do with knowing a few students in my high school who took their own lives as well. I learn to cherish the time I spend with my friends and family because life is too short. You never know what is going to happen.

Having Cody uncover why Meg decided to end her life is chilling. This book, although contemporary, could also be a mystery thriller. Cody is doing her own investigating about what happened. Also, the way that Cody approached Meg's "mentor" is disturbing. No one would approach some random stranger like that. It's just plain dangerous. Even though Cody wants to get to the bottom of the case, she doesn't use her common sense.

Forman writes beautifully with raw sentiment. It's like I can feel the emotions she pours onto the pages. I can feel what Cody is feeling. It's like I am there with Cody when she embarks on this journey. What bothered me about the novel was the romance between Cody and Ben. It turns me off no matter how wonderful their chemistry is especially since Ben is connected to Meg. Also, I didn't expect Cody to engage in romance with Ben. Meg was her friend. There are certain rules of friendship that you abide to no matter what.

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