“You know, I thought about that a lot these last couple of years,” she says in a choked voice. “About who was there for you. Who held your hand while you grieved for all that you’d lost?”
My thoughts exactly. Why did Mia leave Adam? Why did he let her leave? Why didn’t she say anything? Why did he become so self-destructive? Gayle answers all of these questions in Where She Went, but in the most heartbreakingly beautiful manner ever.
I read If I Stay when it first came out, so I’ve forgotten most of the details about what happened in it, but what I definitely remember is the emotional rollercoaster ride. And like many other readers, I didn’t expect there to be a sequel, but was also extremely intrigued and sad to hear about Adam and Mia’s breakup in the upcoming book.
At the beginning of Where She Went, everything seems extremely hopeless and dark and tragic. Despite the fact that she dumped Adam, I wasn’t really mad at Mia because of course there must be a reason for why she would do such a thing. What did get me angry though, was afterwards, when she’s talking to Adam like she hasn’t totally ruined his life. But on the other hand, her words also brought out what an amazingly sweet and strong character she is. When I wasn’t so furious with her, I could completely see and understand why Adam fell so crazily and madly in love with her in the first place.
The tremor in my hand has become so normal, so nonstop, that it’s generally imperceptible to me. But as soon as my fingers close around Mia’s, the thing I notice is that it stops and suddenly it goes quiet, like when the squall of feedback is suddenly cut when someone switches off an amp. And I could linger here forever.
And the part that I love the most about this book is how incredibly real everything and everyone is. I know that’s to be expected, since this is realistic fiction, but it’s also not always a given that a book will be so powerfully gripping. Adam’s life post-breakup is heartbreaking to read about, because he seems so broken and irreparable and halfhearted about everything, but I also found his reaction to the breakup tragedy sort of sweet in the way most sad things that have nothing to do with you are sweet.
The ending was expected, but then again, the simplicity with which Gayle describes Adam and Mias’ feelings makes the whole clichéd factor pretty much unnoticeable.
And I know I say this at the end of every good book I read with lovable characters, but is it too much to ask for a short epilogue set a few years after the ending?? I really want to see more of Adam and Mia as a couple. Pretty pretty please?