If I Stay teaches patience to its readers. Knowing the pivotal plot point before even opening the book then spending the next two hundred pages waiting for the resolution would be enough to try a saint’s patience if it were not for Gayle Forman’s writing. The frequent use of flashbacks takes readers from the anxiety of wondering what will happen to complete immersion of a simpler time. Of Labor Day cookouts, Julliard auditions, and deciding who to be for Halloween.
Of heart to heart talks with Mom (who is gone). Singing with Dad (who is gone). Playing with Teddy (who might be gone).
And once again you’re jolted back to present reality, where Mia must decide to go or fight to stay.
Forman’s characters are so real; in fact, they’re people I’ve known, in a small way. I have family with Adam’s need to occasionally make a Big Production. A parent who I can tell nearly anything. Friends who I could call on night or day if I need help. I’ve received kindness at the hands of strangers that I’ll never forget, just like Mia.
The familiarity of the people in the novel is the only thing I could relate to, while Mia decides. It anchors the novel, while the grandness of Mia’s situation spirals out of control.
If I Stay takes place in less than a few days’ time, but in its span, I learned who Mia was, the wonderful and challenging life she had Before, and the grief that would overtake her like nothing else… if she stayed.
Forced to obey her master. Compelled to help her enemy. Determined to free herself.
Nalia is a jinni of tremendous ancient power, the only survivor of a coup that killed nearly everyone she loved. Now in hiding on the dark caravan—the lucrative jinni slave trade between Arjinna and Earth, where jinn are forced to grant wishes and obey their human masters’ every command—she’d give almost anything to be free of the golden shackles that bind her to Malek, her handsome, cruel master, and his lavish Hollywood lifestyle. Enter Raif, the enigmatic leader of Arjinna’s revolution and Nalia’s sworn enemy. He promises to release Nalia from her master so that she can return to her ravaged homeland and free her imprisoned brother. There’s just one catch: for Raif’s unbinding magic to work, Nalia must gain possession of her bottle … and convince the dangerously persuasive Malek that she truly loves him.
What has me most excited about Exquisite Captive is the author not only touches on human trafficking in a unique way, but is also taking the opportunity to shed light on the real life atrocity through the book’s promotion. Heather Demetrio’s website has a page dedicated to important facts about trafficking’s terrifying existence and a list of organizations fighting against it.
The series which Exquisite Captive begins, entitled The Dark Caravan Cycle, has a pretty sweet website of its own with detailed character descriptions. Exquisite Captive comes out on October 7th.
I’m fascinated by the jinni lore this book constructs. Jinnis coming from a different planet? And I’m loving the juxtaposition of Hollywood lavishness to the MC’s ravished home.
(Also. Is it just me or are jinnis slowly starting to become a trend in YA?)
Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.
You’ve heard of the Kiss, Marry, Kill challenge, right?
The Burn, Reread, or Rewrite tag is equally agonizing for book lovers.
Round 1 (0:19):
The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien
Going too Far by Jennifer Echols
Round 2 (1:21):
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Round 3 (3:00)
Graceling by Kristen Cashore
Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
Round 4 (3:50):
Pearl in the Sand by Tessa Afshar
The Word Made Flesh: Literary Tattoos by Eva Talmadge and Justin Taylor
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Round 5 (5:04):
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
So, give me your judgements. Did I commit an atrocity by dooming any of the chosen books to death by flame? Or let a book slide that could’ve taken a little heat?