Expected publication: April 19th 2011 by Simon Pulse
Clara’s relationship with Christian is intense from the start, and like nothing she’s ever experienced before. But what starts as devotion quickly becomes obsession, and it’s almost too late before Clara realizes how far gone Christian is—and what he’s willing to do to make her stay.
Now Clara has left the city—and Christian—behind. No one back home has any idea where she is, but she still struggles to shake off her fear. She knows Christian won’t let her go that easily, and that no matter how far she runs, it may not be far enough….
Stay explores the darker side of romance and shows that not all types of love are healthy. There are signs in the very beginning that Christian isn’t quite right, but Clara falls for him almost instantly and at first interprets the warning signs as proof that Christian loves her. The story flips between the now, where Clara and her dad are hiding out for the summer, to the past, where Clara and Christian first begin to date and the trouble begins.
I found the story very realistic, Clara’s feelings toward Christian from the time they meet to the present are all over the place- she’s not just some shrinking violet. Granted, she blames herself too much, but when she finally begins to see Christian’s love is obsessive and dangerous she does try to break away. Clara, even while hiding from Christian, finds herself attracted to another boy. While she has to learn to trust her instincts again it shows that life is complicated. You can love a person who is bad for you, you can leave them, and you can fall for someone new.
There is a jab at Twilight in the book, which is fair. Bella and Edward do have a somewhat obsessive love, but it’s never bothered me because it’s complete fiction, their love and their connection with each other is pure fantasy. In Stay it shows that in real life that kind of intense focus suffocates and eventually leads to trouble. Christian seeks to own Clara, to punish her for the very things that first attracted him to her, and to control her actions. But he’s not all bad, in the beginning he and Clara have fun together, which makes it that much harder for her to see the trap closing tighter around her.
Stay gets a Midnight Book Rating of 11pm. I really enjoyed it, and it had me at the edge of my seat towards the end. It doesn’t quite pull off a full midnight rating because the build up of the tension didn’t pay off in full. But a great read, especially if you have a teen daughter… or if you are a teen daughter. 🙂
** I received a copy of this book to review through a Different Area Codes Book Tours .