Katherine reads: Where She Went by Gayle Forman

*obviously, massive spoilers below, beware! 

** I have already done a book and film review on the first part of the duology, so if you're interested in taking a peep at it, click right over here! 

Where She Went is the much anticipated sequel to If I Stay by Gayle Forman, a book I've been absolutely dying to read for a long while (and even though it's been out for a very long while, I will say it's highly anticipated, because oh my god, why haven't I got around to reading it sooner is beyond me). To sum If I Stay up in a few words, it's a really heartbreaking novel about music, the meaning of family, love, friendship, sacrifice and all of those other pompous words we tend to use with really emotional novels. I won't go into too much detail with the previous book, so let the shitstorm commence!

Where She Went picks up the story three years after Mia's accident, when she and Adam are miles apart in completely different worlds. He's basically a massive rock star, writing all those incredible lyrics, being the one that teenagers have a crush on, but he is fucked up. She's a successful young cellist, being compared to Yo Yo Ma (and she wonders why not Jacqueline du Pre), having performed at Carnegie Hall, graduating from Juilliard, but she is all alone in the world. One night, just before he was supposed to leave New York, he goes to see her recital at Carnegie Hall and their worlds intertwine. Before they're fully aware of it, they are having a farewell tour from New York in the middle of the night and in the morning, things look a lot more different than they did the evening before.

The first thing that really strikes you is the fact that the story is told from Adam's point of view, instead of Mia's. I have already told you why I dig that with almost every book I ever read, but to repeat myself, it's purely because in the first book we got this feeling that there's nothing wrong with him, that he's got everything sorted and that life will be a smooth ride for him, but in reality, it was never going to be. It really shows how sometimes, fame can really become something that you come to loathe, how there can be people you really hate and just can't get rid of and how it can screw up your mind. I think I fell in love with his personality a bit more than in the first book and he genuinely became a more likeable character from the really raw presentation of his mind and panic attacks and anxiety and so on.
(Also, a bit out of context, but is there anyone else on this goddamn planet who imagined Adam just like Matt Healy from The 1975? Because I did.)

Found on rebloggy.com
I had suspected that when Mia'd arrive at Juilliard, she would get an easy pass through; nobody would dare say anything to her and I hoped to god that Forman might change it and put in a character that wouldn't cut her no slack, that someone would tell her: "Yeah, you nearly died, but you didn't, so you're no different from anyone else." ...and I'm so happy that after all she's been through, she had to work hard to get through. Because, in reality, nobody cuts you any slack when you're at Juilliard. Really, they don't.

There were so many things that I loved in this book, because I genuinely think that it's phenomenally written, with some jumps to the past and quite a lot of inner monologue, with vivid descriptions of so many things (panic attacks, the scenery, basically anything). The only thing that I was really gutted about was the fact that it didn't make me cry. Everyone was like "This book will make you weep, guaranteed!" when it really didn't through the duration of the book... but when I got to the end of the novel and there were just lyrics of some of Adam's later song, I basically cried like a baby. Happy Birthday, clearly talking about either Teddy, Mia's little brother or any of her parents, it really struck a chord and made a waterfall basically leak from my eyes.

Found on favim.com
It's very rarely that have very little bad things to say about a book and I can say that Where She Went is one of the few rare books like that. It describes everything so amazingly (from the first few hours that Adam and Mia spend together, everything being really awkward, to the panic attacks and performances, the whole shabang!) and the characters became so much more lovable and everything was just pure gold. If you have the chance to pick up If I Stay and Where She Went, then please do, because it's got a 5/5 from me.

If you've read the book, please tell me what you thought about it down below and I shall see you soon!
xxx Katherine


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