Book Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Just One Day
Just One Day #1
Author: Gayle Forman
Reading Level: YA
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Released: January 8th 2013
Review Source: Purchased
Available: Amazon

Summary: (from goodreads) A breathtaking journey toward self-discovery and true love, from the author of If I Stay

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.

Just One Day is the first in a sweepingly romantic duet of novels. Willem’s story—Just One Year—is coming soon!

 This was my first time reading anything by Gayle Forman and it definitely will not be my last. What an amazing writer Forman is! This was another read that felt so realistic. I was wary at first but I kept reading and I fell in love. I especially loved the Shakespeare throughout the book as well.

The book starts off with Allyson and her best friend Melanie standing in line to see Hamlet. They are on a Teen Tour of Europe before they start college. It’s the last stop of the tour and while waiting in line a group of people come up and hand out flyers to a free performance of Twelfth Night under the stars. One of the guys handing out the flyers caught Allyson’s eye. Allyson, the one who is always the “good girl” between her and Melanie, had the idea of skipping out on Hamlet to secretly go and see Twelfth Night. Can we say sneaky?? This surprises Melanie and of course she is down with anything fun and going against the rules. They end up going to the armature play and upon the end of the play “the” guy tosses Allyson a coin. Was this a sign? What could this mean?

The next day they are on the train to some of Melanie’s family before they head home and this is where we meet Willem. Melanie is nursing a hangover because after the play she went out drinking and decides to sleep. Allyson was hungry so she went to get some snacks. She decided to sit at a table and eat so she could let Melanie sleep when the cute guy from the play sat at her table!! What are the chances?? They hit it off immediately. Willem called Allyson Lulu, after a famous actress. How romantic!! My stomach was in knots and had butterflies by this point.

Finally it was time for them to get off the train and Allyson mentioned about how the Teen Tours didn’t get to go to Paris because of a strike. That is when Willem offered to take Allyson to Paris for a day, and then she could return to Melanie the next day. Hmmm, now this is when Allyson REALLY gets wild and agrees!!! She doesn’t even know Willem!!! And in a foreign country at that!! WHAT?? After that one beautiful day, Allyson wakes up alone. Now this is where I was so mad, hurt, and yes, I was crying. 
Both Allyson and Melanie are off to college after they get back home. They are both in different colleges so their friendship has hit a rough spot. Now is the time where they make lives for themselves apart. It’s hard when the only person Allyson has been real friends with was Melanie. She also is torn from how things ended with Willem back in Paris. Will she ever get over him? How will she carry on?

This book was just spectacular!! When reading I kept asking myself if I would have ever done anything so brave. Unfortunately, the answer is no. I think that is why I loved this book so much. Allyson is everything I wish I was when I was younger. The book is not only about romance but about self-discovery. Forman had me from the beginning and I honestly couldn’t put the book down.


  1. I loved this book and it's sequel.

  2. That is so great! Can't wait to read the second book! :)

  3. I'm so glad you loved this book! It's one of my favorite reads of 2013 so far! And, I hope you get to pick up some more books by Gayle Forman because they're all spectacular! Great review!


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