Book Talk: Just One Night By Gayle Forman (JOD/JOY Novella)




SPOILERS AHOY FOR JUST ONE DAY/JUST ONE YEAR so if you haven’t read those yet…beware!

A1This literally picks up where Just One Year leaves off which is where the door opens. So we find out what happens next after Allyson and Willem have finally found each other.

a2SMILE. HAPPY SIGH. Now I need to re-read Just One Day.

a4Here was my thought process when I first found out that Gayle Forman wrote the Just One Night novella:


2.  I really don’t like buying novellas but FINE OKAY IT’S GAYLE.

3. But…I LOVED THE ENDING. It doesn’t need a novella to me. I have how it all goes down in my mind.

4. However, I won’t pass up more time with Allyson and Willem and company.

Here’s the thing: you either found the ending of Just One Year to be satisfying (like I did) or you were furious about how it ended with them opening the door and us not knowing what happens beyond that. I know so many people just wanted to know what happened (I totally did) and hated the fact that we watch them look for each other and we don’t get to see the “end results” so to speak. I totally get it but I felt differently (and I think in the minority?).

For me, the ending to Just One Year was perfect because, even though it was about THEM finding and losing and finding each other again, it was also mostly for me about them finding themselves in the first place. So, as much as I would have LOVED to see the happily ever after and all the nitty gritty details of their reunion, I was at a state of complete contentedness with the ending. It felt full circle and I saw two people who were changed by an encounter they had a year ago reunite as very different people.  They lost each other but they had found themselves. And them being reunited, to me, was just this confirmation that taking risks and letting yourself become who you want to be by saying YES is life changing. But this is just my opinion and it’s probably TOTALLY biased because Just One Day changed my life. Literally. Like action was taken because of this book so that stuck with ME as I read Just One Year as well.

So now that we’ve talked about where I was with my feelings going INTO Just One Night(because that’s important)…let’s talk about Just One Night:

I really enjoyed it! I didn’t NEED it but it made me smile and honestly was kind of perfect. I can’t say a lot HAPPENED in it so if you are looking for some HUGE, dramatic fireworks-and-they-lived-happily-ever-afters kind of thing I didn’t see it as that (I mean, it’s a night) but it still gave me those happily ever after feels anyways because of everything they gained in the first place and the possibilities that there WERE for the future (especially as we learn in Just One Year about a potential job offer that would take Willem to the US). It complemented Just One Year nicely in the way it ends to be honest. It was quiet (okay, the sexual tension and FEELS was anything but quiet) but exciting and FULL of feelings and answers.

I was really pleased that it started from the exact second the door opened. Everything that happened seemed so realistic after that. The emotions and FEELINGS after all the longing and searching. The wanting to talk about everything they both had been through. The exuberance shared with friends who knew their journey to find each other. I LOVED watching them put the pieces together about how they found each other and how hard they searched. Everything that happened was exactly what I think would happen in that scenario. The whole night was the perfect kind of reunion and I loved that we were reunited with so many important characters that aided them to get where they were. I had lots of FEELINGS (happy ones) and I don’t want to give too much away but it was a really nice peek into what happened after the door opened and I was really pleased with it as someone who had already had a whole made-up reunion and thoughts of Allyson and Willem years down the road in my head immediately after I finished Just One Year.

a6loved-it factors+ Nice glimpse into what happened AFTER that I felt pleased with though I didn’t NEED the “closure”, feelings!!, worth the 99 cents for the reunion
SO SHORT (but this is because I could read about them for forever)

Re-readability: I probably wouldn’t reread it but I will re-read Just One Day and Just One Year (many times)!! Would I buy a copy for my collection? Already did. Gayle Forman is insta-buy for me so even a novella gets bought if she writes it.

a5Fans of Just One Day/Just One Year who are curious about what happened after the door opened!

a8 I didn’t necessarily NEED this novella because I was very satisfied with the way Just One Year ended but I’m glad I read it because I was curious how their reunion went and I wouldn’t pass that up ever! It was a quick novella that gave the perfect, realistic glimpse into their reunion night and brought them full circle as two people who changed a lot over the course of the year after their life changing encounter. Happy feelings for sure!   review-on-post-it Just One Night by Gayle Forman

a8j* Have you read this one? What did you think? Similar or different from me? I would LOVE to hear regardless! * Were you pleased with the ending of JOY and how did that affect how you went into this one (if you read it) or are thinking about it (if you haven’t yet read it). The Perpetual Page-Turner

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Such a great review, I really enjoyed reading it! And I definitely want to read this now!

  2. Jamie – I love this review so much. Like you, I thought Just One Day and Just One Year had a satisfying ending. I could imagined what happened after Willem opened the door. It was perfect. I think many readers can say that Just One Day had an effect on them, maybe not life changing, but there is just something about it that makes you want to seek more. More from ourselves. I know it did that for me. Just One Year was the same. When I saw the announcement about Just One Night, I was excited, I’m not going to lie. And reading it was like . . . . perfection. These are books that I hold close to my heart and want everyone to read.

    • YES. That book. It was one of those that I NEEDED to read. I love books that make me examine and question and, in this case, make me take action to change some things. Such a profound book!

  3. I was one of those people left unsatisfied with the original ending – I just wanted MOAR!! So I was very happy with this extra chapter. 🙂 And all that nitty gritty stuff…!

    Wait, this is .99c in the US? It cost me €3.99 – quite the price hike in this part of the world!

    • Haha I totally understand!! I could SEE and FEEL why people would feel that way but ultimately just didn’t personally. SIGH i think I could read a whole other book about them and life after Just One Night hahah. I guess it’s not a bad things to want more?? Ultimate compliment!

      And yes..I believe it said 99 cents when I purchased it!

  4. Jessica (msbooklover89) says:

    I thought it was okay – I loved Just One Day and Just One Year and felt closure after JOY and pretty much pictured exactly what happened in Just One Night so it wasn’t neccessary for me to read. It was still enjoyable althought I didn’t like the changing perspectives and it just felt rushed but I still really like Willem and Allyson’s story 🙂 I think for people that didn’t feel closure would definitely get more out it than I did! Great review 🙂

    • Yeah it definitely wasn’t a necessary read where I felt like OKAY NOW THIS COMPLETES IT. But I was pleased with it for what it was as well. And yes..I struggled with the changing perspectives at first as well bc I was so used to being with ONE of them telling the story. I was hoping it would be longer bc it did feel a bit rushed but then after I finished I was like…well that was a perfect little snapshot into their evening as much as I would want MOAR detail haha

  5. I LOVED Just One Night, and I was one of the people “disappointed” with Just One Year – only because of not being aware that it was Willem’s side of the story and not a continuation. For it to end in the same place was akin to torture, so I’m super happy to get even a brief look at what came after.

    • AH see I knew it was Willem’s story before I went into it if I remember correctly! It’s funny bc, before I knew what JOY would be about, I thought it totally would be a continuation of Allyson’s story who I had grown SO fond of and then we would get to see their relationship play out. And even when I was reading JOY I was noticing how few pages I had left and they still hadn’t met and I was like HMMM. Of course, immediately upon finishing, I was like WHAT GAYLE I WANT MOAR GIMME MOAR. I WANT A KISS AND SOME SEXYTIMES AND THEM TO TALK ABOUT IT AND HAPPILY EVER AFTER. But then the next day I remember being like HMM man I really liked that it ended like that (despite being an eager reader who wanted more). So I TOTALLY understood the people, like you, who were disappointed with it. I just wasn’t for some reason. I’m glad Just One Night helped you feel better about it and put an end to your torture 😛 Can we just please have another book about their relationship and life in the US and then they travel the world together hahha.

  6. I need this series!!

  7. What’s up, this weekend is good in support of
    me, since this moment i am reading this great informative piece of writing here at my home.


  1. […] One Night by Gayle Forman is something I’ll be picking up for a little more closure. Jamie at Perpetual Page Turner has a great review of the final part of Allyson and Willem’s lives we get a glimpse […]