Just One Day by Gayle Forman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
THIS is the book I needed as a teenager. Because it sure is the book I need as a thirty-something woman!
Some of you may know that I travel by myself quite a bit. This year I went to Scotland. Last year I went to Germany and Slovenia. These trips were big for me--it's a huge decision to travel as a single woman. And I really connected with Allyson as she steps off the train in Paris. I've taken so many wrong directions, followed the wrong steps (even with wifi and Google Maps on my iPod Touch), and taken trains and buses in wrong directions. But there is an empowerment to traveling alone and being independent. Honestly, I can do almost anything because I can travel by myself. And survive. And have fun.
But I have to admit that I was looking for my Willem, too. I've seen too many books and too many movies where the woman meets someone on the plane or at the bar or at the cafe and falls in love. Unfortunately, that didn't happen on the two trips I went on. But I looked. And I tried. And I did meet a cute German who looked just like Jon Bon Jovi. And another man who was so nervous about talking to an American librarian that he had to introduce me to all his friends so he knew I was real. That was fun.
Go to Europe, girls. Travel by yourself. Get some balls, as someone says to Allyson in this book. No regrets.
Allyson has a boring tour-guided trip to Europe, but things pick up when she decides to travel to Paris for one day with a man she just met. They fall in love (for one day) and it's magical. But she wakes up and he isn't there. She makes it back to London on her own and lives a year haunted--why did he leave? Was she just a one night stand? Finally she decides to take the bull by the horns--learn French, work and save money to travel to Paris on her own, and change from her pre-med major that she hates. She travels and hunts him down. But sometimes things don't work out perfectly. But, oh, love is good.
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