Friday, 8 August 2014

Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Title: Just One Day (Just One Day #1)
Author: Gayle Forman
Pages: 400
Released: August 2013
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
Favourite Quote: “Sometimes the best way to find out what you’re supposed to do is by doing the thing you’re not supposed to do.”
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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.

My Review

Initial Thoughts: Gayle Forman continues to show me why she is one of my favourite authors. Actually, I might change that. She is now my favourite author. Her ability to writer such an amazing story with such relatable characters is so spectacular.

Just One Day follows Allyson - a reserved and shy teenager who follows all the rules. For her graduation present, her parents decide to send her on a holiday with her best friend to Europe. However, while there she meets Willem - he's free spirited, loves life and lives it to the full. He is the complete opposite of Allyson. So when he agrees to take her to Paris for 'Just One Day', she is ecstatic. This is the first time she has done something that her parents will not approve of. But most importantly, it is the first time that she has lived in the moment. However, things change when he's nowhere to be found the next morning. Upset, frightened and hurt, Allyson makes plans to travel back home. But little does she know that that will not be the end of her adventure.

The Pros: The one thing I love about Gayle Forman is her writing. When reading about the protagonist Allyson, she reminded me so much of myself. I'm the type of person who will stand on the side of parties, have to follow my itinerary on my holiday and I would never dream about taking an abrupt trip to Paris with a guy I have just met. And that was exactly the type of person Allyson was. Reading this novel was very surreal for me because Allyson thought exactly the way I do. Seeing her grow throughout the book was not only enjoyable, but moving too. I have learn't so much from this book and Allyson and Willem have taught me so much through their choices and thoughts. They taught me to live in the moment and if I do happen to get lost, use it as an opportunity to find myself. It taught me to let my guard down for a change and allow people who I don't necessarily know to enter my life. I have never come across a book that has done this to me as much as Just One Day did.

The Cons: The only negative I have about this book was that I felt it was a tad slow three fifths into the book. Nothing was really happening so it made it a bit boring. But it picked itself up a few chapters later so it was all good.

Would I recommend this book? Overall, this book was amazing. I loved its message about 'accidents' - how it can lead to positive things. I would definitely recommend this book to those who are looking for a moving book, quite simply because it teaches you to do something different for a change. But that cliffhanger. Man, you can't end a book like that. I couldn't pick the next book up fast enough.
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