Author: Gayle Forman
Author's Website: www.gayleforman.com
Publisher: Dutton Books (Penguin)
Agent: Sarah Burnes
Editor: Julie Strauss-Gabel
Released: January 8, 2013
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: #2: Just One Year
When sheltered American good girl Allyson "LuLu" Healey first meets laid-back Dutch actor Willem De Ruiter at an underground performance of Twelfth Night in England, there’s an undeniable spark. After just one day together, that spark bursts into a flame, or so it seems to Allyson, until the following morning, when she wakes up after a whirlwind day in Paris to discover that Willem has left. Over the next year, Allyson embarks on a journey to come to terms with the narrow confines of her life, and through Shakespeare, travel, and a quest for her almost-true-love, to break free of those confines.I love love love love love this book! I actually hadn't read any Gayle Forman before this, but you can bet I'm rushing to check out her other books!
You can actually feel the emotion emanating off every page with every one of Allyson/Lulu's thoughts and emotions. I felt like I myself was going on this rollercoaster of emotions, the giddiness of breaking free and doing something totally out of character, the despair when that plan seems to have backfired, and the subsequent questioning of her own personality and point to life. I love that section when she's totally withdrawn and depressed. It's described so beautifully, so painfully. And of course I love the "day," the way Allyson experiences it all with such wide-eyed wonder and utter glee. Fantastic.
As a story about self-discovery, this book does amazing things with a common theme, delving deeper and further than any book I've read recently into what a teenager could feel as she moves out of adolescence and tries desperately to claim her life as her own.