Hey guys! Today I’m taking part in Penguin’s celebration of the paperback release of I Was Here by sharing what Ms Forman’s wonderful words have taught me.
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 first discovered Ms Forman’s books with If I Stay as I’m sure a lot of bloggers/readers did. It is the type of book that made me forget my favorite genre wasn’t contemporary or that there were even other contemporary books out there. It’s a book that makes you understand what true love actually is and why people fight so hard to keep it once they find it. It shows a family outside of the normal dynamic that you want to be a part of because frankly they are just flipping awesome.
If I could I would probably just re-write the book in post form because I adore it so much but here are a few of my top selected quotes from If I Stay. . .
“I realize now that dying is easy. Living is hard.”
“Love, it never dies. It never goes away, it never fades, so long as you hang on to it. Love can make you immortal”
“I just wanted to tell you that I understand if you go. It’s okay if you have to leave us. It’s okay if you want to stop fighting.”
“She didn’t care that people called her a bitch. ‘It’s just another word for feminist,’ she told me with pride.”
“I understood all that in my head, but I still didn’t believe it in my heart.”
“I’ll let you go. If you stay.”
“it will be the kind of pain that won’t feel real at first, and when it does, it will take her breath away.”
When I read this book it was before. Before my mom got sick. Before she went in to remission. Before she got sick again. And again. I can tell you this book and these quotes meant so much to me before, but after? After the meaning changed and they took on another life for me. Now I read them and think of my mom who was tired of fighting. I think of my mom telling me that she was ok if it was her time. I think of bargaining with God, whatever it took to keep her there and in the end bargaining just so that she wasn’t in pain any more and to help support her in her choice. In fact, there are so many emotions packed into my memories of this book that I can’t even write this up without having to take breaks so I won’t start to cry.
Ms Forman’s books have taught me memories are powerful things and there is always good in the bad, even when you don’t want to see it. For this Gayle Forman will always have a place in my heart and on my bookshelf.
Want to win a complete set of Gayle’s YA works? The lovely folks at Penguin are giving away not one but FIVE sets. Five lucky winners will be able to own these! US ONLY and the contest will run from 01/15-02/15.
I WAS HERE
Just One Day, Just One Year, Just One Night Box Set
If I Stay, Where She Went Box Set
So, what about you guys? What have Gayle’s books taught you?
Thanks for stopping by!