Just One Day by Gayle Forman
Release: January 8, 2013
My Rating: 5/5 stars
Synopsis from Goodreads:
A breathtaking journey toward self-discovery and true love, from the author of If I Stay
When sheltered American good girl Allyson “LuLu” Healey first meets laid-back Dutch actor Willem De Ruiter at an underground performance of Twelfth Night in England, there’s an undeniable spark. After just one day together, that spark bursts into a flame, or so it seems to Allyson, until the following morning, when she wakes up after a whirlwind day in Paris to discover that Willem has left. Over the next year, Allyson embarks on a journey to come to terms with the narrow confines of her life, and through Shakespeare, travel, and a quest for her almost-true-love, to break free of those confines.
After the complete heartbreak of If I Stay and Where She Went, I have to admit: I was terrified of reading Just One Day. I mean, excited because Gayle Forman writes beautifully and her characters are some of my favorites, but terrified nonetheless. I CAN’T DEAL WITH HEARTBREAK!
But Just One Day is…different? It’s heartbreaking, yes, but not in the sould-crushing way of the other two (you think I’m being dramatic but I cried for days reading them) were. As someone with a travel bug, this book was simultaneously delicious and dangerous. When I went to London I did the exact trip to Paris that Allyson and Willem take and I got a little wistful for my trip and later I got jealousy pangs for the other travel points that I can’t mention for spoilers. Just know: THERE IS TRAVELING in this book and it’s wonderful.
I was immediately drawn to Allyson even though I am the complete opposite as her, I so enjoyed her journey (literal and metaphorical). Characters is something Gayle Forman does SO FREAKING WELL. Willem was mysterious though what little we knew about him interested me and I’m hoping we will find out much more about him in Just One Year.
My one criticism was the middle was a touch too long and lost my interest a couple of times. I loved the evolution of Allyson from a more typical high school teenager to a more open and independent college student but, in my opinion, it could have been cut down a little.
(Can we have Just One Year, now?)