04 June 2009

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

Mia has a pretty sweet life. She's the daughter of used-to-be-punk-rock-stars. She's in love with a boy in a punk rock band. (He's in love with her right back.) She has an 8-year-old brother, and they worship each other. Her whole life, she's been immersed in the Seattle scene, surrounded by music and all types of artistic impression. And, it hasn't always been super easy, but she is finally coming to terms with shunning her punk rock genes in favor of becoming a talented cellist; she's even waiting to hear about her audition at Julliard!

But sometimes things are just too good to be true, and this story is tragic. Mia is left in a coma from a car crash; her parents and her little brother die at the scene of the accident. While her body is in a coma, Mia can see, smell, and hear everything going on around her. And it's up to her to decide if she should "go" or if she should "stay."

This story will stay with the reader far beyond the last tissue.

For more musical fiction try Sarah Dessen's Just Listen or Gordon Korman's Born to Rock; for those who love tearjerkers try Jenny Downham's Before I Die or Brooke Taylor's Undone; or check out Punk Rock Etiquette by Travis Nichols or Revolution on Canvas, edited by Rich Balling, for more on the punk rock indie scene.

Recommended to middle and high school readers.
Call number: YA FORMAN (Teen Room)

Reviewed by kate the librarian

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