Saturday, February 9, 2013

Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Title: Just One Day (Just One Day #1)
Author: Gayle Forman
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Release Date: January 8th, 2013
Source: Borrowed ARC (Thanks, Kathy!)

My Rating: 5/5

A breathtaking journey toward self-discovery and true love, from the author of If I Stay
When sheltered American good girl Allyson "LuLu" Healey first meets laid-back Dutch actor Willem De Ruiter at an underground performance of Twelfth Night in England, there’s an undeniable spark. After just one day together, that spark bursts into a flame, or so it seems to Allyson, until the following morning, when she wakes up after a whirlwind day in Paris to discover that Willem has left. Over the next year, Allyson embarks on a journey to come to terms with the narrow confines of her life, and through Shakespeare, travel, and a quest for her almost-true-love, to break free of those confines.

Just One Day is the first in a sweepingly romantic duet of novels. Willem’s story—Just One Year—is coming soon! (Summary from Goodreads)

I will be honest. It took me a little while to start this book simply because I was afraid. I was afraid this book would have me in a ball of tears. I was afraid that I had hyped it up too much in my head and it wouldn't live up to Where She Went. I was afraid that this book would carve a little hole in my heart and ache for years to come. And you know what? I did cry. It did live up to the hype. And it has left a stain on my heart I doubt will ever let go. And it was, without a doubt, more beautiful and impacting than I could have asked for.

You have to understand, this book is what I've always wanted to do. This is book is what I did do in a sense, when I traveled to Ireland back in October. To get away from the world, to redefine yourself, to live the life you choose. I connected completely with Allyson because I was exactly like she was. And just like Allyson, I went traveling and it opened up a door in my heart I didn't know I had shut. It is an honest to goodness beautiful experience, and reading about Allyson reminded me just how important my own trip was to me.

I love to witness growth in a character and Allyson transformed before my eyes. She was a beautiful, dynamic young girl who pushed herself beyond the limits people had set for her. From her adventure in Paris, to learning to live life for herself, Allyson amazed me. And then there was Willem. Gorgeous, poetic, Willem. He was the kind of guy to change your world. And he definitely did that with Allyson. The banter and chemistry between the two of them had my heart on a string. I loved reading about them evolving together and almost daring each other to break out of their molds. Another of the things I really enjoyed about Just One Day was all the little bits of Shakespeare. I'm such an English geek so Willem preforming Twelfth Night had me swooning like nothing else. 

Setting the novel in Paris was perfect. Paris is a city rich with history, coated in romantic ideals, and filled with possibility. It's a place anyone could reinvent themselves, and a place riddled with opportunity. Gayle Forman effortless described this gorgeous city and transported me to it. Once I finished, I felt like hopping on a plane straight for Paris so I could experience the wonder myself. I have never been there before, but Forman's writing made me feel like I left a part of my heart there. Which brings me to my next (and most abstract) thought. There's something more here. Something big hidden within the pages of the story. Behind the ink and paper, tucked neatly inside this book is hope. The hope that you can change your life and you can do the things you've always dreamed of. This precious hope burrows into your heart, and makes Just One Day an unforgettable book.

When I finally flipped that last page I burst into tears. Then I started laughing and smiling so wide my cheeks hurt. This book broke my heart then sewed it right back together. Gayle Forman destroyed any doubts I had about this new book. It was more than I could have imagined and I loved it with abandon. This book will enchant you. This book will blow you away. And this book will make you believe beautiful things can happen in just one day.

- Ciara (Lost at Midnight)

Find This Book: Amazon / Chapters / Goodreads / Gayle Formans Website


  1. I NEED to read this book (and her other books) I've heard nothing but good things!

  2. I'm scared to read this book because everyone loves it and talks about how they cried (and I am a very emotional reader). But at the same time I know I need to read Gayle Forman's books because everyone loves them so much, and they sound so beautiful!


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