Book: Just One Year by Gayle Forman
Series: Just One Day #2
Start Date: December 22nd, 2013
Finish Date: December 24th, 2013
Other Books Reviewed: Just One Day, If I Stay, Where She Went, I Was Here
Just One Day. Just One Year. Just One Read.
Before you find out how their story ends, remember how it began….
When he opens his eyes, Willem doesn’t know where in the world he is—Prague or Dubrovnik or back in Amsterdam. All he knows is that he is once again alone, and that he needs to find a girl named Lulu. They shared one magical day in Paris, and something about that day—that girl—makes Willem wonder if they aren’t fated to be together. He travels all over the world, from Mexico to India, hoping to reconnect with her. But as months go by and Lulu remains elusive, Willem starts to question if the hand of fate is as strong as he’d thought. . . .
The romantic, emotional companion to Just One Day, this is a story of the choices we make and the accidents that happen—and the happiness we can find when the two intersect.
So, in my last review, Just One Day by Gayle Forman, I had mentioned that Just One Year was a sequel. I was actually wrong about that, and its in fact a companion novel.
This book is about Willem, a young Dutch man who fell in love with Lulu in Paris one day. They were separated when he left her for a few minutes and actually ended up in the hospital. He travels the world in search of her, but he is never able to find her. Willem is usually cast as a ladies man, but something about Lulu changes something in him. In Just One Day, we have Lulu’s point of view of the year after their meeting. In Just One Year, we have Willem’s point of view.
So if you read my review of Just One Day, then you know that I absolutely adored that book. The character development that Lulu went through felt so real and you were able to relate to Lulu. When I read that book, I felt as though I knew who Willem was as a character. I don’t understand why I felt like that when Willem was barely in the book. But I think that was the point. Lulu felt as though she knew who Willem was even though she had just barely met him. However, when you get to Willem’s perspective, I felt like he was a different person. He seemed as though he was missing a part of himself, the part that was Lulu. He wasn’t as distraught as Lulu was, but people cope with things in different ways. What I took away from this book, was that Willem needed to grow up a little bit before he and Lulu were reunited. Willem was jumping around from place to place because he didn’t know which place to call home. I’m actually glad that they spent a year apart from each other. Both characters grew, and when they are finally reunited, they are able to give each other the better versions of themselves. They also seemed to be more sure of what they wanted from themselves and from each other.
I didn’t like Just One Year as much as Just One Day. I think this is because I was able to relate to Lulu/Allyson better than I was Willem. This maybe for person reasons, or maybe just a female relating to another female. I think I’m going to go with the former. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy Just One Year. The only complaint that I have is that I wish that there was more elaboration about the ending, when Willem is finally reunited with Lulu/Allyson. Allyson had made so many assumptions about Willem, like the fact that she thought he had a new girlfriend and all this stuff. I just wish I could have seen a conversation between them, explaining to each other what happened the day they were separated, what happened since then, and clear the air between them. Their ending was nice, but I guess I just wanted their relationship to be more cemented and find out what was in store for them.