I only read If I Stay because I was locked out. Seriously. I got locked out of my apartment and I had If I Stay downloaded on my iPod. I was sucked into the narrative and literally did not put the book down until I finished. I tried to engage with other human beings but I had hunted down a ebook copy of Where She Went and I kept sneaking peaks at it when no one was looking. Finally I squirreled away with my Kindle and you could not have pried me away with a crane. I was glued. Now I've just stopped giving my husband a half hour long babble about the best parts of the book which he listened to with amazing tolerance. Considering I couldn't even understand myself most of the time that was pretty impressive. I've now turned said babble into review form and I hope you can follow me.
I didn't see the need for a sequel for Mia, the heroine of If I Stay. It would be possible, but not necessary. Neither did Gayle Forman. This book is the domain of another character, the boyfriend who called Mia back when she'd lost everyone else. Adam lost so much in the crash but lost even more when Mia backed out on their relationship. I was repulsed by the early versions of Adam and the person he allowed himself to become. It wasn't until he starts to show himself to Mia that I was able to see why he'd made the choices he had. Mia moved on, but Adam hasn't. Now it's our turn to listen to the story of the one who gets left behind. It's not that Mia is so perfect, or that their love is so pure. It's simply that she's the only one who still sees him as the boy that he was, and that's what he needs become a man.
There's so many times this could have gone wrong. So many ways that these characters, this plot, these words could have fouled up a story that was so difficult to work right. But they didn't, and I am grateful. It's sometimes nice to be reminded of all a story can be.