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Just One Day by Gayle Forman
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Just One Day (original 2013; edition 2013)

by Gayle Forman

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5536718,067 (4.13)10
Member:ewyatt
Title:Just One Day
Authors:Gayle Forman
Info:Dutton Juvenile (2013), Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:LibraryThing Early Reviewers, romance, travel, college, identity

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Just One Day by Gayle Forman (2013)

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English (68)  Piratical (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (70)
Showing 1-5 of 68 (next | show all)
I discovered Gayle Forman last year when I read [b:If I Stay|4374400|If I Stay (If I Stay, #1)|Gayle Forman|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1393750891s/4374400.jpg|4422413] so I was pretty excited to discover the Just One Day/Year series which follow Allyson and Willem.

I found this book to be a lovely read. It made me want to go back to my backpacking days in Paris, although I never met a charismatic Dutch guy and have a whirlwind romance like Allyson.

Allyson is a complex character for YA which is testament to Forman's ability to create really relatable characters. She has a lot of expectations from her parents, she always plans everything, she doesn't know how to relate to people...she's kind of boring really (but we like her anyway). When she meets Willem, after watching him perform Twelfth Night in London, she is convinced to throw caution to the wind and follow him to Paris for "just one day".

She does it and what ensues is a slow building (albeit all in one day really - but over the course of half the book) romance. And then something happens. The rest of the book is Allyson dealing with that something. I wont tell.

I loved the incorporation of Shakespeare as a theme. Allyson takes up a Shakespeare class at college, after secretly giving up all of her pre-med subjects. The plays represent her own self-discovery, leading her to take a path not set out by her parents, but her own heart. Willem, and that one day she spent with him in Paris, is that person that sees beyond the well planned out life to the person she could become if she took a chance.

It is also about friendship, a big theme in most young adult's lives and what happens to friends who have been close all through school and then go their separate ways. I had a similar experience in my own friendship group after school and Forman did a good job with this sub-plot. ( )
  Erin.Patel | Aug 22, 2014 |
I discovered Gayle Forman last year when I read [b:If I Stay|4374400|If I Stay (If I Stay, #1)|Gayle Forman|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1393750891s/4374400.jpg|4422413] so I was pretty excited to discover the Just One Day/Year series which follow Allyson and Willem.

I found this book to be a lovely read. It made me want to go back to my backpacking days in Paris, although I never met a charismatic Dutch guy and have a whirlwind romance like Allyson.

Allyson is a complex character for YA which is testament to Forman's ability to create really relatable characters. She has a lot of expectations from her parents, she always plans everything, she doesn't know how to relate to people...she's kind of boring really (but we like her anyway). When she meets Willem, after watching him perform Twelfth Night in London, she is convinced to throw caution to the wind and follow him to Paris for "just one day".

She does it and what ensues is a slow building (albeit all in one day really - but over the course of half the book) romance. And then something happens. The rest of the book is Allyson dealing with that something. I wont tell.

I loved the incorporation of Shakespeare as a theme. Allyson takes up a Shakespeare class at college, after secretly giving up all of her pre-med subjects. The plays represent her own self-discovery, leading her to take a path not set out by her parents, but her own heart. Willem, and that one day she spent with him in Paris, is that person that sees beyond the well planned out life to the person she could become if she took a chance.

It is also about friendship, a big theme in most young adult's lives and what happens to friends who have been close all through school and then go their separate ways. I had a similar experience in my own friendship group after school and Forman did a good job with this sub-plot. ( )
  Erin.Patel | Aug 22, 2014 |
The main character has her life planned out by her family, but then she makes some (in real life) very bad decisions. This book is in no way indicative of real life, but it is fun to think about all the decisions you, as the reader, could have made differently and the various out comes. That is why I liked this book so much. Not because it's real life, but it's a bit of an young adult fantasy world. ( )
  breakingbooks | Aug 13, 2014 |
Read my full review here.

The thing about this book is that it deals with so many relatable topics that it’s so easy to like.

I’ve read that some people think Allyson is an idiot for “obsessing” over Willem, but I think that aside from them each finding someone who understand their true selves and having a feeling that something bad happened to him - which it did - she’s searching for the Allyson that she is when she’s with him because it’s the truest version of herself. Except instead of calling herself Lulu she realizes that, “Hey, this isn’t some persona based upon a famous classic actress, this is the me I would be if I lived for myself instead of others”. To me, that’s the most profound aspect of this book and that’s what really made me love it.

As for the setting, I love that we’re taken to so many places. Forman knows how to describe these places so well that I felt I was almost in each location. And can I just say I love that we follow Allyson to college? For this reason, I could easier relate to Allyson’s feelings and struggles in school. A lot of people call this book YA, but I definitely think it’s more New Adult (which I love). It’s an NA book with a good plot and accessible characters! Finally!

I would be crazy to not point out that I love Forman’s incorporation of Shakespeare. Not only does she use his words and ideas, but she has us follow his plays (as they are acted and/or read by characters).

The only problems I really had are with some aspects of the writing style. Forman tends to repeat herself a lot within the same paragraph which can become a little distracting.

Overall, this book was everything I expected it to be and then some. It really spoke to me on a personal level and I was easily drawn into it. ( )
  CaitlinAC | Aug 10, 2014 |
Such a perfect book.

The middle was a bit slow for a few chapters, but that was my only complaint. And, actually, I think it helped the story more than hurt it. I found myself as frustrated as Allyson in those parts.

I love how real the characters were. I didn't especially like Melanie or Allyson's mom at first, but they did have good sides. I did like them by the end, and even almost liked Celine.

And it ended with such a cliffhanger! I'm so glad I waited for both books to be out before I read this. The moment I get home tonight, I'm going to start reading the sequel. ( )
  books-cats-love | Jul 21, 2014 |
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"Sparks fly when American good girl Allyson encounters laid-back Dutch actor Willem, so she follows him on a whirlwind trip to Paris, upending her life in just one day and prompting a year of self-discovery and the search for true love."--

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