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Review: Where She Went

image from Paper Riot
Epic Recs is a feature hosted by Judith at Paper Riot and Amber at Books of Amber in which two bookish peeps are paired together to recommend books to one another. It's pretty great.

As you surely know, Gaby is my Epic Rec partner and we are on FIRE, y'all

In case you missed it, here's the post where Gaby explained why I needed to read WHERE SHE WENT by Gayle Forman. 

And for the final disclaimer. This review will be a little different from my standard format because of the Epic Rec feel. Onward!

It's been three years since Mia woke up from the accident that killed her family. It's also been three years since Adam, the boy who loved Mia and begged her to stay in IF I STAY, was unceremoniously kicked out of her life. He's still struggling with why Mia let him go without a word of explanation. A chance meeting brings the two artists together again and finally, FINALLY, we learn where she went. (See what I did there?)

Oh dudes. If anyone knows how to bring the swoons it is Gayle Forman! Mia and Adam obviously have lingering chemistry and it's just a matter of will they reignite that flame or let it burn out and search new fires. Since the book is from Adam's perspective, we get a lot of his musings and personal swoons over Mia and it is quite adorable in a very mature way. Not like XXX mature but things like he admires her strength, her dedication to her music, etc. C'mon you guys. 

New York City! Adam lives in LA, but is stuck in NY for the night because the band he made super duper famous is going on a crazy world wide tour the next morning and he likes to fly out separately because of drama. SO - imagine his inner turmoil when he sees a poster with Mia, HIS MIA, announcing her cello performance that night in NY. Thank you, universe! 

This is probably the one thing that I would critique about the book. I didn't feel like there were any significant plot twists or turns and pretty much guessed how it would turn out. However - HOW we got to the end was absolutely enjoyable and wonderful and heartfelt and emotionally rich so I'm not hating the lack of twists and turns. Again, I wasn't totally surprised about why Mia left Adam, but hearing it come from  her in her voice was SO. REAL. Like, It honestly felt like I was listening to a conversation happen in real life, not a book. So good.  

I think the reason I didn't pick up WHERE SHE WENT was because I could predict what would happen. But thankfully Gaby forced it upon me because not only was it an addictive read that I hammered out in 2 days, but I was reminded at how beautiful Gayle Forman's writing was, how the characters were so real and authentic and yes I DID care about them, and how even though this is from Adam's book, this is still Mia's story (she is on the cover, you know!) and I was super curious to know where her life had gone from IF I STAY. 

If you were Mia, would you have stayed with Adam, thereby making Where She Went an irrelevant book or would you have done the same thing she did? I want to say that I'd pull a Mia because of WHY Mia did it. Which I will not spoil. I could also see myself clinging to Adam as a way to make me stronger instead of finding it in myself - especially at her young age! Is that an answer? 
This isn't a question, but I just kind of need you to ramble about your Adam feels real quick. And go. OH GIRL. The boy wrote a triple platinum album from his break up angst over Mia. THAT IS SOME SERIOUS ANGST. And can I just say how we know Adam is hot, but there isn't a lot of time spent talking about it - rather we learn about his personality and his dedication to Mia and his love of music that he's struggling with and oh my gossshhhhh my ovaries. 
What kind of future do you envision for Adam and Mia? This is such a tough one. I mean, without spoiling anything for those who haven't read the book yet, I feel very comfortable, confident and fist-pumpy about their futures. 
Out of all the NYC adventures that Adam and Mia went on, which was your favorite? Oh goodness. That's another tough one! Because my gut reaction is the Bowling Alley because it's just fun and light-hearted and a nice shoutout to their roots. But that greasy spoon diner sounds DELICIOUS THOUGH. 

I admit it. Gaby knew what was good for me and I adored WHERE SHE WENT even though I didn't want to read it and even though I knew what would happen because the story and the characters and the writing are just THAT AWESOME. 

So Gaby is 2 for 2 for Truly Epic Recs for me. Be sure to peep on over to her blog to see if INSIGNIA was a Truly Epic Rec for her! 

Lisa is a gamer, crafter, fangirl, mother, wife and unabashed nerd who is pretty ridiculous and it's best you know that up front. When she's not binge watching Netflix or crafting into the wee hours of the night, you can find her spending a lot of her time on Pinterest and Twitter.


  1. Ohhh I JUST finished this one as well, so you've posted this review at kind of a perfect time for me haha.

    I really loved reading this book from Adam's perspective. I just loved seeing how he felt about Adam, just how much he really loved her, and all the turmoil he went after her accident. We KNOW that Mia would have had a really hard time after she woke up, but it was also a curious insight to see how Adam coped as well. I loved it.

    I loveddddd them touring NYC together. I have never been there before so I adore reading books or watching movies/TV shows set there. It's an AMAZING place.

    Adam caused ovary explosions for me too.

    Loved your review Lisa! <3

    1. YAY for great timing!

      I heard ice helps for ovarian explosions. :)

  2. I'm glad you finally read this! I read it right after I finished If I Stay and there was definitely a "WTF" moment when I realized that something had happened between Mia and Adam. BUT, I ended up liking this more than If I Stay, I think because of Adam. I love, love, love Adam. I really like how you described Mia's explanation of why she left Adam as being so real. The whole time I was reading I was really pissed at her, but hearing it from her and the way she said it was just poignant and honest and heartbreaking. Also the scene where the band sees her again makes me so happy.

    1. I thought it was SUPER clever of Gayle to have them break up so you're like WTF but also learning more about the two characters we have already grown to love. So interesting perspective wise!

  3. I won't be reading this because I didn't like If I Stay that much, but YESSSSSSS *CELEBRATES* *POURS WINE* I'm so proud of this being another Truly Epic Rec. We did gooooood matching you two. And you two did too, I guess. But I'm happy to take credit *whistles*

    1. If not for you and Judith, Gaby and I wouldn't know our love for each other would run so deep! So THANK YOU. Our awesomeness could only take us so far. You gave us that extra push. MWAH.

  4. Love this post! I actually didn't like Where She Went all that much, but now I want to re-read it to see if I would like it more than I did the first time around.

    1. I think once I accepted WHERE SHE WENT for what it was, I was able to embrace it. If that makes sense.

  5. This book is PERFECT. I love it so much. Adam broke my heart into a thousand little pieces, but Gayle Forman managed to put it all back together. I just adored reading from his point-of-view. I agree about their futures - I have all the confidence in the world for them. ;)

  6. I really need to read this one. I need to read If I Stay first though I suppose. ALSO HOW CUTE ARE THE BUTTONS YOU PUT IN THE REVIEW. I adore you.

  7. It makes me really happy that you enjoyed WHERE SHE WENT! It's such a great companion to IF I STAY, and I loved seeing the story from Adam's POV. Even though I knew where it was going, it was still so incredibly moving.


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