Series: If I Stay #2
Author: Gayle Forman
Publication Year: 2012
If you had a second chance at first love . . . would you take it?It's been three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life. And three years he’s spent wondering why. When their paths cross again in New York, Adam and Mia are brought back together for one life-changing night.
Where She Went is the sequel of If I Stay. If you haven’t read If I Stay, there will be spoiler for that book and I’m warning you now. Where She Went takes place three years after If I Stay. Early on, we learn that Mia decided to stay for life and left Adam. Mia never really gave a closure to their break-up. In the present day, Adam’s band Shooting Star has gone big and he’s practically a rock star. But somehow he doesn’t enjoy it or feels any satisfaction because he’s still haunted by Mia.
Where She Went is told from Adam’s point of view. This book is basically about how Adam copes with his breakup. If in the previous book I only see the almost perfect Adam, in this book I see the angsty Adam. Like seriously, he doesn't do well post Mia. Despite of the fame and success, without Mia, he feels empty. He develops self-destructive behavior and tends to act hostile to people around him. I found this angsty Adam interesting actually. I have never met anyone that would behave like that as a reaction to a breakup which I believe is a little bit exaggerated.
I’m not surprised that Mia left Adam. After all, in the end of If I Stay, Adam did say to Mia that it was okay for Mia to leave him as long as she’s staying (being alive). He said that he understood and it might be too painful for Mia to be reminded of the past. With that in mind, when I learnt how bad he dealt with the breakup, I must say I didn’t sympathize towards Adam. At least that’s my initial thought. As the story progresses and I was given more from the flashbacks, I kind of understand what he’s going through. Kind of. I get that Mia was mean for leaving him like that, but still. One good thing though, this makes Adam more human to me; more realistic. Does that make any sense? Just bear with me.
The narration of Where She Went has the same style as If I Stay. It jumps back and forth between the present time and Adam’s past memories; with the present time being his ‘coincidental’ encounter with Mia. One thing that caught my attention was, the present time reminds me a lot of the Before trilogy movies. In the present time, Adam and Mia spent the night walking along New York City while talking and recounts their time together back in Oregon. See what I mean?
All in all, Where She Went is a nice companion to If I Stay. It gives a refreshing take on Mia’s accident from the first book. If you enjoyed reading If I Stay, I recommend you to check this one out.