Tuesday, August 21, 2018

If You Could See Me Now

Cecelia Ahern is one of my favorite writers. She has had many books that I have enjoyed reading (some of which have been turned into movies) and this book, If You Could See Me Now, is no exception.

The book takes the idea of (spoiler alert) a child’s imaginary friend and taking it a step further by asking, "What if these friends are real?" In the book, Elizabeth is an adult trying to balance all her responsibilities when she meets Ivan, who helps her navigate and see her life in a new light.

Credit: Harper Collins

I am completely spoiling the book for potential readers here but I can’t share why I love the book without giving a lot of it away. Basically, Ivan is an imaginary friend, an invisible person who only appears to a child when he or she needs help. It just so happens that the person needing help was Elizabeth and not her nephew to who Ivan first showed himself.

The sad part about the book is that as part of the rules of being an imaginary friend, they disappear from a person’s life when their problem/issue is resolved so when Elizabeth finally resolves all her personal issues, Ivan disappears. It’s not his choice, it’s a natural thing that happens when someone doesn’t need that friend anymore. I think that this part is the only thing that I didn’t like from the book. Not that it didn’t make sense, but that the lead characters, who were falling for each other, did not end up together in the end. Stories that do not end up the way I want them to can be disappointing, even if what happened was understandable.

Despite the ending, I did enjoy reading this book because it shows a growth in both characters, both ending up better people because of their time together. The story grows on you and makes you feel for the characters in the story. It’s just sad that it had to end the way it did.

I guess Ivan could have been selfish and not helped Elizabeth so that he could be in her life forever but since he loved her, he did not do that. I also loved that line where he said that he accepted that life was about meetings and partings and that he was glad that he met her. That he wished for her all his life. That was the line that made me tear up and love the book even more, mostly because it was something I can relate to when it comes to love and not having things work out the way we wanted them to.

Back in the day, there was news that the book rights were bought for adaptation to film, with Hugh Jackman to take on the role of Ivan in a musical version of the story. I think that Jackman would be too old for this now, but I hope that the movie will still happen eventually because this for me would make a really good movie.

If you’re not averse to non-happily ever after books, you might want to give this one a try. It’s worth the read!


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