Thursday, March 5

Gayle Forman - I Was Here

“Sometimes we meet people and are so symbiotic with them, it’s as if we are one person, with one mind, one destiny”


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 started I Was Here believing that it is an emotional novel about friendship, forgiveness and love and will probably be just as beautifully written as If I Stay and Where She Went was. No luck there. A novel about a serious topic, such as suicide should be extremely touching and this book just wasn't one that I'd expect from such a talented writer as Gayle Forman. 

The problems started when I couldn't grieve Meg. I wanted to - believe me I did - but I didn't know anything about her so why should I be sad? In If I Stay Forman was able to create a family who every single reader could grieve because they felt real thanks to the flashbacks. Unfortunately she didn't try to use this trick here, and only told us what Meg was like, and mostly only how Cody saw her. This would have been alright if only we at least got to know something about Meg, but besides that she turned heads and everyone loved her I still knew nothing about her by the end of the novel

This is a coming of age novel which would require real character growth but sadly I didn't see Cody develop that much. She could have been an awesome character because she had so many confusing feelings but many of these feelings didn't come through and I couldn't relate to her either. Her decisions were hastily made, and more than once stupid and ignorant. Above all she was judgemental and more than half of the time could only care about herself and no one else.

The plot wasn't only incredibly slow but after a while it became ridiculous too. I wanted Cody to find closure and be able to move on, instead she did some pretty crazy things that no book should tell you to do. 

The love interest, Ben was the biggest cliché ever. He played in a band *cough Adam 2.0 cough* and he was such a bad boy who didn't know any synonymes to 'fucking'. The funny thing is that based on how he acted you couldn't even tell he was a bad boy. He wasn't mean, and we never saw him hook up with a girl, plus he never actually admitted that he 'fucks' everything that moves, like Cody suspected. Yet again, this was the case of being told what a character's like rather than shown. Oh, and I'm really fed up with characters who always blame someone else for their shitty choices. I mean it's alright to tell about your piece of shit dad but why do you have to keep bringing him up? 

I hated the romance. Even if we let the lack of chemistry go unnoticed there's still how it was the usual cliché of bad boy gone good for a girl. Am I the only one who thought that Cody only wanted Ben to feel better? The same goes for him too by the way. Apparently the drama factor wasn't high enough so we got to see some more unnecessary drama close to the end. Why? 

Now, Meg and Cody's friendship. I wasn't able to feel such a deep connection between them as I wanted to. Again, the case of telling about their friendship and connection, instead of letting us see it for ourselves. I get Cody's feelings toward Meg but how easily she violated Meg's privacy was unacceptable. I'd have preferred if Cody had felt hesitant to read her best friend's emails. Plus it seemed to me that most of the time she felt more jealous than sad or guilty.

Favorite character: - 
Least favorite: Cody, Ben, Cody's mom

The story idea: 3/5
The realisation of the story: 2/5
The characters: 2/5
The cover: 4/5
Enjoy factor: 3/5



16 comments:

  1. Oh no! That's too bad it was a bit underwhelming. I really wanted to read I Was Here, but after reading a bunch of reviews, I think I might delay reading it. I did love If I Stay though!

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    1. I nearly didn't read it but I already had it soo I kind of felt like I had to. I hope you'll enjoy it if you choose to read it. :)

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  2. Ugh. I hate a guy character that is so cliche. So sad to hear that this book didn't live to your expectations. I probably won't read it.

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    1. You wouldn't believe how fed up I'm with the typical bad boy character who miracally changes for the girls. There are so many awesome people in the world, can't author be a little more creative?

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  3. Aw I was hoping that this would be a good one but I've been hearing so many negative reviews. I guess after the success of If I Stay, people are expecting a lot more.
    Hopefully your next reads are better!

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    1. Me too, Gayle Forman is an awesome writer and this story had great potential but it never lived up to it.
      I hope if you choose to read it, you'll enjoy it. :)

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  4. I've heard many mixed things about it and after reading your review I think I'll pass on this one. I've never read a thing by Gayle Forman even though I own Just One Day which I would read because I bought it but I don't know if she's an author I will enjoy to be honest.

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    1. If I Stay is amazing so if you're planning on reading anything by her choose that. Ugh I hate when I buy a book but don't read it right then and when I finally pick it up I'm not interested in it anymore but still have to read it. I hope you'll enjoy Just One Day, though. :)

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  5. I was so excited for this book, but my co blogger read it and ended up giving it 2.5 stars so that scared me off. I seem to be seeing reviews that say about the same thing about the lack of development and The bad romance so I think I'll end up skipping this one.

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    1. The worst in this book is that you expect a lot from it, I mean it has a great potential + Gayle Forman wrote it, where can it go wrong? And it's such a disappointment.

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  6. Yikes! I've read many mixed reviews about I Was Here, Im one of the few who actually liked it lol. I thought the plot was pretty fantastic but I can understand why people don't like it because of the characters and the weird romance - love your honest review x Benish| Feminist Reflections

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    1. I think I read your review, and decided to read it afterwards because you convinced me it was good. I'm glad you liked it at least! :)
      Thanks! :)

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  7. To be honest, I don't think you were really supposed to grieve Meg- after all, Forman basically never reveals anything about her that would make us grieve her. The book seemed like it was much more focused on Cody and how she was trying to accept what's happened.
    Although I actually really enjoyed the book, I can understand why you didn't like the book that much though! Cody definitely did some unreasonable things and was a bit difficult to empathise with.

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    1. You might be right. I just wanted Meg to feel like a real person to me so I can understand who she was, thus feel sorry for her but this never happened.
      I'm glad you enjoyed the book! I think if I had been able to relate to Cody a bit more I'd have enjoyed the novel a lot more.

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  8. I was so hoping to read this one, but after so many reviews bring down this book, I think never mind, I can read it when I literally have no more books to read.

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    1. Haha, I'm guessing that's never going to happen then. :)

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