Wednesday 19 November 2014

Book Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Title: Just One Day
Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Puffin
Summary: Allyson Healey's life is exactly like her suitcase—packed, planned, ordered. Then on the last day of her three-week post-graduation European tour, she meets Willem. A free-spirited, roving actor, Willem is everything she’s not, and when he invites her to abandon her plans and come to Paris with him, Allyson says yes. This uncharacteristic decision leads to a day of risk and romance, liberation and intimacy: 24 hours that will transform Allyson’s life.A book about love, heartbreak, travel, identity, and the “accidents” of fate, Just One Day shows us how sometimes in order to get found, you first have to get lost. . . and how often the people we are seeking are much closer than we know.

Review: I should know that whenever I have a Gayle Forman book that I've added to my TBR that I should read it immediately. After reading If I Stay and its companion novel Where She Went a few years ago I fell in love with Gayle Forman's writing. She has a wonderful writing style and I just adore the way that she  narrates, and she has such unique stories to tell... it just sucks me in so completely. The stories that she writes while they generally deal with a vast audience of emotions they deal in personal growth so much.

So well over a year after being on my list to read I finally picked up Just One Day and you guys, for me this one had ALL the feels. I've read mixed reviews: people that loved it, people that hated it. Those bloggers and reviewers who share similar tastes to my own like Ginger over at GReads! loved it. I'm so glad I finally read this. Enough about my ramblings about loving the book, let me tell you a little bit more about it.

Just One Day is a story about good-girl Allyson Healey who goes on a three-week European tour with her extrovert best friend. Allyson is the kind of girl that you don't have to worry about getting into unnecessary trouble. That is, until she meets European free-spirited Willem and he makes her an absurd offer: come to Paris with him for one day. Allyson makes a decision that is incredibly uncharacteristic for her and takes him up on his offer. This is a decision that changes Allyson's life. While I know that realistically this isn't the best move... a young girl going off with a man that she doesn't even know should send up a ton of red flags. But I loved both Allyson and completely against what my head was telling me, I loved Willem too. There was just something about him that melted my heart and kept me wondering about his past. He was a wanderer who seems to have been everywhere in Europe... and never seemingly goes home.

Part of my attraction to this book was the setting and I don't feel like the setting has been such a big part of the story for me since Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard or Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (which I will admit are two of my favorites EVER). And in a way, I think that I compare myself to Allyson in that I'd probably be that girl to go on the European tour and not wander off the beaten path. Unless there was someone, like Willem, to show me what Paris or Europe as a whole is really about. 

While reading this I laughed and I cried. I have to admit, I swooned just a little bit over Willem. I felt so many things while reading this. I haven't felt this involved in a story in a really, really long time. Contemporary NA at it's best. I cannot state this any more simply: go read this book now. It is, quite simply, one of my favorite books that I've read in 2014.


Michelle Fluttering Butterflies said...

Oh I loved this book. And just Gayle Forman in general. I think I'll always read her books no matter what...

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