Review: I Was Here – Gayle Forman

Review: I Was Here – Gayle FormanI Was Here by Gayle Forman
Published by VIKING
Published: January 27th 2015
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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.


To be honest, it’s rare that I meet a Gayle Forman book that I don’t love. If I Stay? Loved it. Where She went? Broke me. Just One Day? Amazing. Just One Year? A different kind of love. So I had very very high hopes for I Was Here. And I admit I was a little nervous since it is Forman’s first standalone since her debut which I thought was just okay. But after reading I Was Here I was put at ease. The book was excellent and quintessentially Gayle Forman.

I Was Here is about Cody and Meg, inseparable best friends. Well until Meg decides to take her own life and leaves Cody behind to pick up the pieces. Beating herself up over not seeing the signs that her friend was in trouble, Cody goes to Meg’s college apartment and finds out about a life her friend had she knew nothing about. With the help of clues left behind by Meg, her roommates, and the mysterious bad boy Ben McAllister, Cody unravels the facts behind Meg’s suicide and things she never really knew about her best friend.

I guess what I really loved about I Was Here was the fact that the story was more about the friendship between Cody and Meg and how guilty Cody felt after her friend left her behind. It was more about Cody figuring out how to handle her grief and live a life without her friend that was like a crutch to her. Is there romance? Sure. And trust me, I loved that part. But the story really isn’t about that. It’s about how you can never really know someone even when you think you do. It is about dealing with feeling like a failure for your friend and how to have the life you once wanted but was too scared to go after. It’s about life going on.

And can we talk about Ben McAllister for a second?? Wow does Forman know how to write an interesting boy. Honestly I’m not sure I was supposed to love Ben the way I did, but man it is impossible not to. He is arrogant and cocky and has this swagger about him, but he is also sweet and supportive in a strange way. Basically he was sexy as heck and I love him and his banter with Cody. I also liked his background/story we were given. Basically I had no control in liking him. I did have a minor issue with one part of his and Cody’s story, but I loved everything else so much I let it go.

All in all I Was Here was exactly what I have come to know and love from Gayle Forman. It had all the elements I wanted and just a little extra. The story was plotted well and had great characters and I most definitely cried a tear or two. It pulled my heart strings in the best kind of way. Can’t wait to see what is next Ms. Forman.

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Do you want to show how you left your mark somewhere? You can. Go to the website for the book HERE and show your “I Was Here” moment. It is a pretty neat tool to show where you have been and what you may or may not have left behind.

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