Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. I've read books about love and books about heartbreak and sacrifice, but none of them have amounted to the literary beauty of Where She Went. Books don't need to be action-packed or filled with complex plots to be considered a "great read." Instead, they can have two characters, both with deeply instigating personalities and a passion for opposite types of music. Throughout my teenage life, I've acquired a taste for both rock and classical, and it makes my heart swell with enchantment when I see the two styles resonating to create a cacophony of emotions.
Adam and Mia were an unlikely high school couple who've now gone their separate ways in life. Mia's accident brought them close, but then it pushed them apart. Adam, whose band has hurled into the depths fame, is living the life of a rockstar. Mia's life couldn't have been more different. She's a child prodigy in the world of classical music whose career is only beginning. One last fateful night in New York City leaves them both reminiscing about the past, enduring the present, and fighting their way into an uncertain future. Adam promised Mia he'd doing anything for her if only she'd stay. But for Mia, leaving would have been so much easier than staying.
Usually, I’m no fan of romances involving careless and shallow teenagers in love. But Adam and Mia are different. Despite their youth, their love was the kind that reached into the soul and bonded together for eternity. All the suffering they’ve endured was the kind of passion and pain that fueled their lives emotionally. Their music, their life, and their love was in completely harmony. And that in itself presented a beautiful and complicated obstacle for two polar opposites meant to attract. There’s something about Gayle Forman’s writing that’s hauntingly elegant. In the midst of her story, I’d sometimes find myself stopping just to relish the poetry-like descriptions, or to soak in the radiant flood of overwhelming emotions. I found myself completely engulfed in the wave of grief and hope that was the foundation of Adam and Mia’s relationship. Towards the last few chapters, I nearly felt my heart shattering at Mia’s proposition of closure. For a moment, their friendship seemed to hang in a delicate balance. One look could send them down opposite sides of a bridge, while it could also send them crashing into one another’s arms. The ending, however, was a song that still echoes in the back of my mind. I have never read a book more poetic, pure, and musical. It was stunning. It was painful. It was beautiful. It was the strings of an electric guitar and a cello playing in harmony.