Review–Where She Went (If I Stay #2)

Where She Went (If I Stay #2)
by Gayle Foreman

Summary: It’s been three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life.
And three years he’s spent wondering why.
When their paths cross again in New York City, Adam and Mia are brought back together for one life-changing night.
Adam finally has the opportunity to ask Mia the questions that have been haunting him. But will a few hours in this magical city be enough to lay their past to rest, for good – or can you really have a second chance at first love?

Source: I borrowed a digital copy from my local library

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I didn’t like If I Stay very much as it wasn’t my kind of story. However, after seeing the movie, I was mildly curious about what happened next. Also, all of my friends and other readers kept saying how much better Where She Went was, so I decided to read it. I should really go with my gut sometimes. I didn’t love Where She Went, though it was fairly interesting and it was nice to get Adam’s point of view. These books just aren’t my thing. I hated the characters in If I Stay, but the movie made me like them a lot more, so I figured it would be nice to get some closure. I saw from the synopsis that Adam and Mia broke up, so I guess I just wanted to know why.

There’s a lot of types of characters and storylines that just aren’t for me. Some of them include obvious tearjerkers, near death types of things, and whiny guy protagonists. So… why am I reading these? Adam is the kind of male character I can’t stand. A lot of girls just eat up a good musician pining after an ordinary girl and gobble up the verses he sings for her and writes for her. And if you’re that kind of girl.. this is TOTALLY for you. But, ugh. It was all so cliché.

I wanted… I wanted closure. I wanted to know why Mia and Adam broke up in the first place. I expected this sort of bomb to drop and them to break up in all of the flashbacks, but it was more like a gradual separation. And all of it was just so anticlimactic and then, next thing I know, they are suddenly on an adventure, meeting for the first time since their break up and deciding to begin anew. I get that pain and loss affect people and the fact that they broke up made sense, but I didn’t think there was enough of a bang with the break up or enough glue to put them back together if they just gradually grew apart.

If I didn’t like Mia in If I Stay, Where She Went didn’t help at all. I couldn’t grasp her character at all. She was a phantom. Adam was mopey about everything and Mia was on this other planet.
Basically, everyone should just disregard my review because it’s my fault I keep reading about these people. I should have never picked up the first book. I should have never picked up this book. It’s not my thing. I don’t think it’s sappy or romantic or sweet. It’s a journey consisting of nothing but a handful of moments and flashbacks.

I feel like this kind of contemporary YA book is like candy to some people. Death, sappiness, heartfelt lyrics, whiny boy, ordinary girl… and there’s your sob story. Cue the excitement. It’s like what billionaire love stories are to adult romance. Nothing but addictive genre candy. There’s just nothing about books like these that set them apart. They are a dime a dozen. I really thought If I Stay would transcend the genre and after hearing the praise for Where She Went, I was sure the author would pull through in this one, but no. I’m sorry to my friends who love this kind of thing. I just can’t. I am SO happy I didn’t buy the book and I found it at the library. I would be a lot harsher about it if I paid 10 dollars.



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