Tag Archives: out of body

If I Stay, by Gayle Forman


One millisecond, that’s all it takes, and Mia loses everything dear to her heart. Her life is over. Or is it, really? After a terrible car accident, Mia finds herself outside her body, witnessing her family’s and friends’ distress, the effort of the medical team to save her life, her boyfriend’s struggle to get the right to visit her in the ICU, and her own body fighting death… Soon Mia realises that her fate lies in her own hands. She faces a dilemma bigger than everything she’s ever experienced, should she decide to stay – and face her losses – or move on to another dimension…

The issues of out-of-body experience, afterlife, and death that Mia faces interest me. In my latest novel Body Swap, the hero faces something similar. I was therefore looking forward to finding out how Gayle Forman dealt with those issues in If I Stay. The story is gripping. Mia’s dilemma, her struggle, her hopes and fears become ours. It is impossible to read this novel without asking oneself the question of what we would do, would we find ourselves in Mia’s situation. Forman’s writing is full of vivid images, at times light and airy, at times strong and heavy, such as the minutes following Mia’s accident. But they are always spot-on. I found the questions going through Mia’s mind sometimes a little too obvious or brushed over too quickly, but overall, Forman did a very good job. I did get slightly annoyed at first though when the narrative went from the present to the past, and again, and again. I felt that the flashbacks slowed the action and were a little repetitive. But once you got to know the characters, it was fine. Some parts of the book seem to lack emotion at first, for example the cold way Mia watches the world from outside her body, but in fact it’s a way for Forman to show the distance between the new Mia and her former life – that is until she finds herself dragged back into it – big time.

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Body Swap


My latest young adult novel is out. It’s called Body Swap. It’s available as eBook and in paperback format.

Here’s a blurb about the story:

The world’s first text message adventure romance with the other side!

William is thirteen and has recently moved to a town called Fulton with his parents. His sister Estelle died accidentally a year ago, and his mother is in deep grief. In his new hometown, William meets Pat, a boy who loves big words and is in need of company. Out of the blue, William receives a text message from the mobile phone of an unknown sender called Stephanie asking for help. The two boys are at first astonished, then dubious, when in a flurry of text messages Stephanie tells them she is in a coma at a nearby hospital. She says she is floating outside her body and needs their help to get back into it.

Initially incredulous, William and Pat become intrigued and decide to check whether Stephanie is telling the truth. They manage to trace the hospital and gain admission into the Intensive Care Unit, where sure enough they find Stephanie in coma. At their wits’ end about how to do as Stephanie asks the two friends call on a female psychic called Doris to help them get Stephanie back into her body. A disastrous mix up occurs, however, and William ends up trapped in Stephanie’s body and shut out of his own.

In Stephanie’s body, William experiences difficult and sometimes comedic situations. He learns about things girls have to live with, from unwelcome approaches, to bras and high heels. The situation becomes even more desperate when Pat falls in love with Stephanie!

William and Pat elaborate a scheme for getting William and Stephanie back into their respective bodies, but timing is crucial and time is running out. The boys confront awesome challenges and meet with an unexpected enemy, and discover at the same time the secret behind Estelle’s death.

The official website: http://www.jeromeparisse.com/bodyswap.htm

Buy it in paperback format on Amazon or as eBook on Amazon or Smashwords

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