Monday, October 7, 2013

Book Review: Just One Year (ARC)

by Gayle Forman
ARC, 336 pages
Expected publication: October 10th 2013 by Dutton Children's
Source: Publisher

Blurb:

The heartrending conclusion—from Willem’s POV—to the romantic duet of novels that began with Allyson’s story in Just One Day

After spending an amazing day and night together in Paris, Just One Year is Willem’s story, picking up where Just One Day ended. His story of their year of quiet longing and near misses is a perfect counterpoint to Allyson’s own as Willem undergoes a transformative journey, questioning his path, finding love, and ultimately, redefining himself.


Review:

This book is one of the reasons why we should always see things from the perspective of the other person. We've seen a chunk of Willem's life from the point of view of Lulu but in Just One Year, we get front seat to its entirety.

The story is told from Willem's point of view and picks up from where Allyson and Willem separated in Paris (not from where Just One Day ended as per the blurb above). In this book, the readers are enlightened as to what truly happened to Willem after his night with Allyson. Did he really leave her? Has he already forgotten about her? I'm not in the position to answer those questions for you but all I can hint for the fans is that the answers are pretty obvious. *wink wink*

I love this book to pieces but dang. You have no idea (unless you've already read this) just how frustrating this is. Seriously, this book has taken the word frustrating to a whole new level. I was constantly shouting WHAT?! and WHY???? and HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME? and AFTER ALL THIS TIME?? @*#&(*@&!! But why, you ask? Because remember those places Allyson went to during the year? Let's just say they are connected to Willem. Yes, they are and I'll leave it at that.

In Just One Day, we saw how Allyson coped up with losing Willem after their night in Paris. We saw how she grew into an independent and strong-willed character. In Just One Year, I'm glad to report that Willem's also doing a job well done making amends with his troubled past. If Willem was the catalyst to Allyson's journey to self-discovery in the first book, Allyson is also Willem's trigger to his own. Most of the aspects that I loved in Just One Day are still present in Just One Year like the travels and the meeting of new people. I'm a little bitter though, because Willem is meeting new people and having intimate moments with some of them while knowing that Allyson is broken miles away.

Forman's writing is as brilliant and hypnotizing as with the first book. I devoured her words and the pages flew by quickly until there was only a few pages left and I was both yearning and dreading the ending. However, like in Just One Day, I didn't like its ending that much. Though that's just me wanting to see them all cuddly and sweet together but on the other hand, I loved how both book's ending finally merged together down into one story.

Also, I just want to note that Willem mentioned Adam Wilde here which means that Just One Day and If I Stay are set in the same universe and timeline! Now I want to see them all together. I wonder if they'll become bestfriends? Forman should really write about those four, lol.

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Disclosure: This ARC was received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

10 comments:

  1. Omg this sounds cruel but brilliant! Like how she writes teh other side of the coin and you get to see what REALLY happened from book 1! I haven't read the first book yet but I have the audiobook of it I really want to get it read soon especially with this one being released! I'm so glad that it's a strong sequel it makes me even more excited to start the series! Great review, Chel!

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    1. I hope you like this as much as I do, Giselle. It's nice to hear that I got you exceited for this too! Forman is such as amazing writer. She won't disappoint you. :D

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  2. Gosh I just LOVED this one and am so glad you felt the same! It's such a fantastic look at the "other side" and the ending is such a perfect, but open, conclusion to this duology. Lovely review!(:

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    1. So glad you loved it too, Keertana! But unlike you, I'm still not a fan of open ending.

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  3. Willem mentions Adam? I loved Adam! You already know I wasn't a fan of Just One Day so I'm hoping I'll enjoy this one more. I think it'll be interesting to see things from Willem's perspective.

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    1. Yes he did! I was like O__O!! I even googled Adam Wilde just to confirm that he is the Adam from If I Stay, lol! Also, Willem's voice kinda reminded me of Adam's but that's just me.

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  4. So, I've yet to discover the brilliance of Gayle Forman, but somehow your review has made me very excited about this book anyways! I will definitely start with If I Stay first, but it's just good to know that this duology was so well received by you and others because I do want to read it someday. I am super curious why exactly you found this book so frustrating!!

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    1. I hope you discover it soon, Aylee! Forman had me at her If I Stay so yes please start with it! :D

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  5. I love your review for this one. This book took me through the full gamut of emotions, too. The timing of things! Aaaack. But it was beautiful and I wouldn't have wanted it to be anything other than what it was. Except MORE. I want more Allyson and Willem.

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    1. Thanks KImberly! Also, I concur! I only didn't like the ending because I wanted MORE!

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