About the Book

Title: I Have Lost My Way
Published: 2018
Swoonworthy Scale: 7

Cover Story: Where Are My Glasses?: Pastel Edition
BFF Charm: Big Sister x 3
Talky Talk: I Once Was Lost, But Now Am Found
Bonus Factor: 24
Relationship Status: Let Me Love You

Cover Story: Where Are My Glasses?: Pastel Edition

This cover is lovely, if not exactly attention-grabbing—but it reminds me of when I try to read something from a long distance. I want to fumble for my glasses and be able to focus. (Pretty colors, what might you be if I could see?)

The Deal:

Freya is an up-and-coming singer who has lost her voice. Harun is a secretly gay son who has lost his boyfriend. And Nathaniel is a boy who has lost nearly everything.

When a chance accident brings the three strangers together, they quickly find that they were thrown in each others’ paths for a reason. In just one day (sound familiar?) they realize that each can provide what the others were missing.

BFF Charm: Big Sister x 3

BFF Charm Big Sister with Clarissa from Clarissa Explains It All's face

These poor kids, you guys. Freya has a pushy stage mom and an absent big sister, who has been angry since their father abandoned them years ago. Harun has so many secrets, and is so afraid to come out to his traditional Pakistani family. Nathaniel’s background—well, let’s just say it’s pretty horrifying. I want to give them all the biggest hugs and every bit of support I can muster, while happily watching the three of them interact as if they’ve known each other all their lives.

Swoonworthy Scale: 7

There are some steamy moments in this book (my favorite included baseball, boners, and beer), but as you would expect, nothing particularly explicit. Still, though, it’s a Gayle Forman book, so you know it’s going to have some moments of pure swoon: I think we all want someone who looks at [redacted] the way that [redacted] looks at them. SIGH.

Talky Talk: I Once Was Lost, But Now Am Found

Forman’s writing just keeps getting better. Although this isn’t my favorite of her books (that honor is reserved for If I Stay/Where She Went), her prose cuts to the heart of the human condition, especially the parts that affect teens. This book is packed with loneliness, betrayal, heartbreak, and other pain—but instead of wanting to fling yourself into the nearest pillow for a good cry-fest, Forman somehow makes the reader feel hopeful. Even when things don’t work out quite the way they should, you know everyone will survive and thrive.

She effortlessly writes a diverse cast with distinct personalities and back stories. All of Gayle Forman’s characters feel like real people: Freya, Harun, and Nathaniel are no exception. They’re the sort of characters you feel like you could easily find in New York City just by bumping into them (or falling on top of them, as the case may be).

Bonus Factor: 24 Hours

Neon sign that says 24 HRS

Writing a book (an interesting one, anyway) that takes place in less than 24 hours is hard. This book, on the other hand, is as easy to devour as if you were actually living the day with the characters. How Forman does it, I don’t know, but this is her particular superpower.

Relationship Status: Let Me Love You

Oh, book. I picked you up solely because of your author—I didn’t need to know anything else—and you did not disappoint. I feel as though I’ve made three new and fascinating friends within your pages, and now I want to introduce you to my friends. Let us love you, please.

FTC Full Disclosure: I received my free review copy from Penguin. This review was originally posted on Kirkus Reviews in exchange for monetary compensation, which did not affect or influence my opinions. I Have Lost My Way is available now.