Apr 19th, 2011 by Lisa
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
If I Stay tells the story of young Mia, an aspiring cellist, trying to decide if she should stay after a tragic car accident. While in a coma in the intensive care unit, Mia has flashbacks and observes her family and friends trying to deal with her being on the brink of death. The thought of living seems too much to bear, but she realizes it is her choice…should she stay?
From the Publisher (Penguin)
In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck.
A sophisticated, layered, and heartachingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make—and the ultimate choice Mia commands.
Book Club Party Ideas for If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Music plays a big role in If I Stay. Mia is a cellist and her boyfriend, Adam, is a rock star whose band just signed a record deal. On their first date, Adam saves two weeks of pizza delivery money to take her to see Yo-Yo Ma. “That man has a way of making the cello sound like a crying woman one minute, a laughing child the next.” Click on the picture below to hear sample songs and to purchase Yo-Yo Ma CDs or MP3 songs from Amazon.
At her audition for Juilliard, Mia plays a Shostakovich concerto, two Bach suites, all Tchaikovsky’s Pezzo capriccioso and a movement from Ennio Morricone’s The Mission.
What to Wear
Mia dressed like a rocker for Halloween, wearing lizard skin pants, a blond bobbed wig with streaks of purple Manic Panic and a vintage Sonic Youth t-shirt. She accessorized with a black leather band on one wrist and about two dozen silver bangles on the other. Click the pictures for more information and to purchase the items.
Book Club Menu
On a hot summer day, Mia and her family invited their friends and threw an impromptu labor day party with “steaks and, this being Oregon, tofu pups and veggie burgers.” My favorite veggie burger is a Grilled Portobello Burger topped with Caramelized Onions, avocado, tomato and provolone cheese.
They also had watermelon kept cool in a bucket of ice and a salad made with vegetables from an organic farm. My quickest, tastiest salad is Organic Cranberry and Walnut Salad.
Later in the evening they roasted marshmallows. Although, making S’mores isn’t mentioned in the book, there isn’t a better way to eat a roasted marshmallow.
Other menu ideas:
- Mia’s favorite dish that her dad makes is salt roast. Another one of his specialties is smoked salmon hash served with sourdough bread
- Mia’s best friend Kim is fond of froufrou drinks and orders a cinnamon-spice chai latte with a piece of marionberry pie.
Book Club Resources
Ratings at the time this post was published
|Goodreads: 4.03 stars (10,711 ratings)|
|Amazon: 4.5 stars (190 reviews)|
|Barnes & Noble: 4.5 stars (634 ratings)|
|My Rating: My rating: 4.5 stars. This book is just so cool. Who didn’t dream of having a rocker boyfriend in high school? Grab your Kleenex, though, for you will likely be crying both tears of sadness and joy.|
- “Forman excels at inserting tiny but powerful details throughout…which will draw readers into this masterful text and undoubtedly tug at even the toughest of heartstrings.” -Kirkus Reviews
- “You will not want to put this book down. Part of you can’t wait to see what her final choice to live or die is and the other part of you will just want to stay on the journey with Mia. Worth the time and tissues. You will not be sorry. ” – Reading Lark Blog
- “Wow! If I Stay left me completely speechless. Gayle Forman is one amazing writer and If I Stay is a beautiful book.” – Katie’s Book Blog
Discussion Questions for If I Stay by Gayle Forman
- What would you do if you were Mia? Would you stay? What would be the main reason you would make that decision?
- Describe Mia’s relationship with her parents. Did you admire her parents? How did each of them change when they became parents?
- Did you expect Adam’s reaction to Mia dressing up like a punk rocker? Why did he react the way he did?
- How does the song written by Mia’s father tie into the story?
- This book is undoubtedly sad, but did you find inspiration in it as well?
- What do you think happen to Mia and Adam after the story ends?
Click the icon to purchase If I Stay at your favorite bookseller
About the Author
Gayle Forman began as a writer for Seventeen magazine and then became a freelance journalist. After traveling the world she came home, had a baby and started writing young adult novels.
|Where She Went, the sequel to If I Stay, is now out. I can’t wait to read it!|
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