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I Was Here by Gayle Forman

Writing.ie | Young Adult

By Megan Punzet

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I Was Here is an absolutely beautiful heartbreaker story of love, betrayal and suicide.

Following the story of Cody, after the tragic suicide of her best friend Meg, I Was Here is an emotional and passionate book by Gayle Forman.

While Cody deals with Meg’s death, she also must take a journey of her own, to understand why Meg did what she did. The book’s plot and character development is almost superior to Forman’s If I Stay, which is another gorgeous book of love and loss. The storyline was very fluid, and I found myself really relating to the characters, especially Cody and Meg, even though we only hear about her though flashbacks. I think Cody’s character progresses really well though her different stages of grief, and you could really empathise with all the characters, especially at the end.

My one and only let down about the book, is with Cody’s relationship with Ben, who she meets through Meg’s passing. I think their bits were always the most dull and I found myself wanting to skip forward at times when they had conversations. I still really liked Cody’s and Ben’s characters, I just didn’t find their relationship as interesting as the rest of the book.

I would definitely recommend this book for all teenagers, even more so, for teenagers going through grief or depression. Although this is already a reasonably mature book because of a few references, I think the story behind it including depression and suicide make it a mature reading. Even though this is a very upsetting and emotional book, I very highly recommend it for its plot, characters and the beautiful storytelling throughout it.

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