Reviewed by Meghan Saldecki

Clara’s never had a true boyfriend, only flings and dates. But when she meets Christian, that changes. Without even searching, it seems she’s found someone she could be with forever.

And then the unthinkable happens. Christian becomes more and more jealous and more and more obsessive. Over Clara. He accuses her of looking at other guys, of wanting to be with them. He accuses her of wanting to leave and never believes she truly loves him, only him, no matter how many times she tells him.

When Clara realizes that their relationship is too far gone – that Christian is too far gone – she leaves the city and her friends behind to stay at Bishop Rock with her father, telling no one where she’s going.

There, she breathes for the first time in a while and starts picking up the pieces of her life – or at least trying. Nevertheless, she’s still scared that she may not have run far enough.

I was drawn to Stay and its premise from the first time I read the summary. I love realistic fiction and Stay leads the pack.

This book has wonderful characters that just seem real to me. I was feeling for Clara and was hoping everything would work out for her. Things kept piling on and I just wanted to help her out from under the pieces of her life that were caving down. She had to constantly protect Christian’s feelings and walk on egg shells so he wouldn’t fly off the handle. She finally runs out of steam and attempts to get out of the relationship, but just keeps getting sucked back in, which I can highly relate to.

Christian was a wonderful character in his own way as well. He was the fuel of the fire for this book, and he was written so realistically. I applaud Caletti for creating such true to life characters.

The writing was descriptive and poetic at times, and just flowed beautifully. I only have a few gripes with interesting grammar, which may or may not be due to the fact that I read an ARC. Stay is written in first person, but at times there is a paragraph that uses the word “you,” in a semi-general way, like in the sentence “you could cut the tension with a knife.” This is confusing, because it seems like the point of view was changing, but after a quick rereading of the paragraph, I understood what was being said. This happens a couple times, but I either got used to the writing, or no other paragraphs contained semi-generalized you’s.

That being said, I’d gladly read anything of Caletti’s in the future. I loved Stay and I happily savored it from beginning to end. I would definitely recommend this to anyone that loves realistic fiction and/or someone that has gone through this very situation to show them it’s. not. your. fault.

Rating: 5/5

Meghan is a 18-year-old book blogger. She likes to read and write in her spare time and would like to become a published author one day. She plans on going to college soon.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Simon Pulse. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.