Monday, March 25, 2013

Book Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

So I had this book sitting on my nightstand for about three weeks. It was with a few others that I had checked out from my library. I've been so busy posting and working on my manuscript and none of them were getting read. Luckily, I was able to renew this book and since I hate checking out a book without reading it, I dove right in...and I pretty much did not put it down. Yup, I read it in about 8 hours yesterday on my VERY lazy Sunday. Here's the summary:

Allyson is on her senior trip with her best friend Melanie in Europe. They've been a lot of great places but so far Allyson hasn't been impressed. That is until a cute guy invites her and Melanie to watch his group's outdoor Shakespeare performance. Allyson and Melanie agree and sneak off and Allyson catches the eye of the cute guy. She's thrilled because this doesn't normally happen. Melanie is the beautiful, daring one, not Allyson. When they're leaving the next day there he is. His name is Willem and he's heading home to Holland. When he sees how upset Allyson is over not getting to go to Paris, he offers to take her. Just one day in Paris. Allyson decides for just one day to be brave, to be someone else. She agrees. They spend an amazing day in Paris and by the end of it are pretty much confessing their feelings for one another. Then Allyson wakes up the next morning and Willem is gone. She leaves Paris and goes home and starts college and spends the next year tying to please her parents, be a friend to Melanie, and make new friends. But she's depressed and it's affecting all those areas of her life. Eventually Allyson decides to try to find Willem. She wants answers. And in the process she starts to grow up, make her own decisions, and figure out who she wants to be.

**Obviously, I loved this book. I mean I didn't do much yesterday but read it. I'd seen all the praise for it and I've read Gayle Forman's other books and loved them so I knew I'd love this one too. Allyson is such a relatable character. There are so many of us out there like her. Smart, not traditionally pretty, not bold and daring, who feel like we live in the shadow of our fun, beautiful best friends. Like Allyson, I did everything I could to please those around me and never considered trying to please myself. Just One Day kept me turning the pages wanting to be there for every moment of Willem and Allyson falling in love. I wanted to be traveling across Europe with Allyson and experiencing everything she experienced. I was right there with her, heartbroken, when she woke up and found Willem gone. We've all gone through that at some point--being in love and getting hurt. 

So basically, I say: read this book! I can't wait for the sequel, Just One Year, where we get to learn what happens when Allyson tracks Willem down. We'll get Willem's story and find out what he was up to in the year they were apart.

Thanks for stopping by! Let me know what you think in the comments below.