“Sometimes you don’t even need to be in the same room for the damage to be done.”
My Rating: PG-13 for language throughout (and f-bombs are included frequently), some sexual themes, and the fact that it’s about a girl that drank industrial chemicals to kill herself.
Official Summary: Cody and Meg were inseparable.
Two peas in a pod.
Until . . . they weren’t anymore.
When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.
I Was Here is Gayle Forman at her finest, a taut, emotional, and ultimately redemptive story about redefining the meaning of family and finding a way to move forward even in the face of unspeakable loss.
My thoughts: I didn’t love this book. It dragged for me, and the characters were too predictable for their angst to really pull me in. The main character, Cody, is suffering through this loss of her best friend, but you don’t feel her pain- all you feel is the ‘head-desk’ sensation because of her disjointed feelings. The main love interest, Ben McAllister, is supposed to be heart-wrenching and ends up annoying, predictable, and utterly boring. The book would have been good if the plot between the two main characters had been a little more unique, but it wasn’t, so this one fell flat for me. The cover’s gorgeous, though.
What to Watch: (SPOILER ALERT)
Language is used throughout, and it’s mostly the f-bomb. It seems to be Ben’s favorite word to describe life, his actions, and everything else under the sun, and he’s not the only one.
There are prevalent sexual themes: Ben had sex with Meg before, and then later he and Cody have sex, and there are innuendos and not-so-subtle hints about it peppered into the writing.
Drugs are present, and although the two main characters do not partake, they have a friend called ‘Stoner’ Richard who constantly is smoking some illegal substance and asking them if they want to join.
As far as violence goes, there’s not much except for the emotional trauma and the frequent references to death/suicide/Meg’s specific suicide.
I didn’t love this book, and there were a lot of cautions, even though they weren’t these big huge red flags. So again, it’s up to you. I hope this helped!
Questions? Comments? Have a book you’d like me to review? Post a comment below and tell me what you think!