Review: ‘I Was Here’

Most people have heard of, if not read, a novel by Gayle Forman. Her most well-known novel is “If I Stay,”and on Jan. 27, 2015, she came out with a new bestseller.

“I Was Here” chronicles the story of Cody whose best friend Meg commits suicide. Cody does not believe the claims, though, and becomes obsessed with finding out why she did it.

As Cody is packing Meg’s things, she comes across an encrypted file and is curious. What comes next is a page-turning journey only Forman could craft.

Through this tragic story she enlightens her audience about the topic of teenage suicide and the horrors that surround it, particularly after the person’s death. This book made me think about life more than ever before.

Since this book is relatable to many college students, it isn’t surprising that it brings about strong opinions in me as a reader and student. I found myself torn between yelling at Cody to stop looking for proof, accepting that Meg is gone, and wanting to know more.

It is essential to have life experience in order to fully understand Cody. You need to have experienced growing apart from a best friend to even imagine how hard this was on her.

I am obliged to mention the romance, as well. While Meg was alive she liked Ben, and when Cody met him she fell for him, too. The fall was gradual, but both girls knew it was wrong for Cody to feel that way. I must applaud Cody. Sure she was nosy, and went after the guy Meg had liked, but she tried to fight it.

Gayle Forman’s writing is beautiful. There is emotion on every page, and even when I didn’t want to feel a certain way, Forman’s writing forced me into the response she had intended for the reader. For the most part, the characters were true to themselves, except for one scene at the very end.

Within this scene Forman was lacking the deep emotion that was so prominent in the rest of her book. That one scene caused this book to drop from a five star, down to a four star.

 

Jenna Koslowski

Contributor

jkosl669@uwsp.edu

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