Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Book Reviews

Just One Day by Gayle Forman

5 Stars

I’ve had my copy of Just One Day for a few weeks, but I knew that I wanted to make this the first book I read in 2013. So I tortured myself by waiting, and the morning of January 1st, making my coffee and grabbing this book off my shelf felt like the most perfect thing ever.

Just One Day took me on a whirlwind of places I want to visit…from England to Paris, and that was just the start! I truly felt as though I was experiencing these places first hand. Gayle Forman does a wonderful job of vividly describing them to us. There was just this richness to each description that made it impossible not to envision.

Allyson was a character I felt instant empathy for. Her journey of self-discovery was one that left my heart incredibly raw. All the highs and lows, I felt them all so strongly with her. Seeing all the growing she does from the first page to the end made me feel like a proud friend, one watching and encouraging her from afar.

You might be asking yourself what the heck I’m talking about by this point. I mean, like me, you probably thought looking at the title that this whole book would be about the One Day, right? Well, it’s actually broken up into two parts. Part one is the Just One Day, then there’s part two. I think this made the story have so much more depth. It’s not just a romantic jaunt through Paris in one day with a dreamy guy, it’s about falling in love, the forever kind, and what happens when you lose that.

The dreamy guy? Willem. Yeah, he was dreamy, for sure! But also a bit of a ladies man, which always stings. We don’t really get to know him deeply enough to know his reasons for being that way, but if I had to guess, I’d say it probably has a lot to do with the fact that he’s a drifter and will always need a place to crash for a night or two, so why not with a girl. It’s mostly necessity, if you ask me because from what we learn of him, he’s definitely the type that will only be in love once and for good. He’s smart and confident, and gorgeous, and I fell in love with him too. He definitely stained me for good.

Just One Day is literally how long it took me to finish this book. I couldn’t put it down, you guys! I spent most of Part Two in a glass case of emotion*, so close to shattering. Though, toward the end, I started feeling this excitement, this exhilaration, and anticipation of what would happen. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. And upon finishing, upon reading the last page, my heart was doing this weird thing where it was both happy and crushed because it was over…for now. See, the next book, Just One Year, will be out later this year but that just seems like an eternity right now.

I went into this book with such high expectations. After all, Gayle Forman’s Where She Went is one of my favorite books ever. It met them. All my expectations were met. :)

Book Info

Just One Day by Gayle Forman
Series: Just One Day #1
Published by Dutton Juvenile
Pub Date: January 8th 2013
Pages: 368
Format: ARC | Source: Publisher
Genres: ContemporaryRomanceYoung Adult
Buy the book! | Goodreads

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!

What Some Friends Had to Say About It…

April @ Good Books and Good Wine – “Yo, if you love books that are about people finding themselves, coming of age, and quite simply love in it’s myriad forms, it’s likely you’ll fall for Just One Day by Gayle Forman.

Sab @ YA Bliss – “Like a cup of sweet hot cocoa… So warm. So rich. So incredibly delicious.

Jessica @ Wastepaper Prose – “Needless to say, Just One Day is one you need to read, especially for all Gayle Forman fans.

*BAHAHA – I can’t believe I just used a Ron Burgundy reference in a book review! And used it with such sincerity! *sigh* It was fitting, ok!


About Gayle Forman

My name is Gayle Forman and I love to write young-adult novels. Because I do. So thank you for reading them. Because without you, it’d just be me. And the voices in my head.

Gayle Forman is an award-winning author and journalist whose articles have appeared in such publications as Jane, Seventeen, Glamour, Elle, and The New York Times Magazine, to name just a few. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

16 Responses to “Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman”

  1. Avatar


    ACK!!! I cannot wait for this one, sounds just as amazing as If I Stay and Where She Went.. cannot wait!! Wonderful review Jess! =D

    • Avatar

      Jess @ Gone with the Words

      You’ve better have read this one by the next time I see you, C!! *taps foot on ground*

    • Avatar

      Jess @ Gone with the Words

      I TOTALLY get what you mean about it being depressing but hard to put down. But how about that ending, huh?! :D

    • Avatar

      Jess @ Gone with the Words

      I KNOW YOU WILL LOVE IT!! In fact, I’m replying so late that I KNOW YOU LOVED IT! Because you read it already. :)

  2. Avatar


    I can’t wait to read it! This sounds great and it’s one of the books I am really forward this year. Great review :)

  3. Avatar


    I have not read anything from her. I have one on my shelf. If I stay I think is the name. I have heard nothing but wonderful things about this author, I really need to get around to trying her out. :)

    • Avatar

      Jess @ Gone with the Words

      April, you should totally read her books!! Especially if you already have If I Stay, which is such a great book. Let me know if you do decided to read it! I’d love to see what you thought of it!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.