If I Stay, by Gayle Foreman

Reviewed by Julia, age 14, New York

If you are looking for a brief, valuable read (and a thorough lesson in new vocabulary) Gayle Foreman's bestseller If I Stay is a worthy novel. The book explores a sensitive topic, death, in a mature manner. Seventeen-year-old Mia, a rising musician with hopes for attending Julliard, is left with a decision like no other after a car accident killing her parents; she must determine whether to live or die while existing in a ghost-like state. The novel addresses all factors of Mia's dilemma through a plethora of well-crafted flashbacks which allow readers to view a good portrait of her family, friends, and boyfriend, Adam.

Despite the unusual plot, there are unmistakable confusions within the text. How could Mia, a girl understood to spend a significant amount of time with her cello and boyfriend, contain such an expansive vocabulary? Also, there is little identification of Mia's existence as a ghost, and it is a conclusion one must draw after reading far enough into the novel. Most of Mia's choice is made by emotions brought upon by her boyfriend, creating a message I'm nervous about a teenage audience reading.

I give If I Stay 3 out of 5 stars. The novel bears a sequel, Where She Went, which is narrated by Adam.

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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