If Only It Were True

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If Only It Were True
Author Marc Levy
Original title Et si c'était vrai...
Country France
Language French
Genre Novel
Publication date
Published in English

If Only It Were True (original title: Et si c'etait vrai...) is French author Marc Levy's first novel, released in 1999. It was translated into English in 2000 and was adapted into the American film Just Like Heaven in 2005. A 2006 Bollywood movie named I See You is also an adaptation of this book. 2004 Malayalam movie Vismayathumbathu was also based on this book.


If Only it Were True is a story set against the backdrop of San Francisco and tells the story of Lauren Kline, a young, pretty, medical resident, and Arthur, the man who rented her old apartment. The story revolves around these two central characters.

This book actually starts with the following opening sentence: "Le petit réveil posé sur la table de nuit en bois clair venait de sonner" (The small alarm clock resting on the light wooden night table began to ring). Reference: Marc Lévy, "Et si c'était vrai...", Edition Robert Laffont, S.A., Paris 2000.

Plot summary[edit]

Lauren Kline is a pretty, young, medical resident, completely devoted to her work in the Emergency Room of San Francisco Memorial Hospital. She worked round the clock dealing with patients until she got into a serious auto accident. As a result of the accident, Lauren went into a coma. She "woke" to awareness outside of her still comatose body, and was frustrated that she could not communicate with anyone. After a while, she chose to spend most of her time at her old apartment, where she is discovered by Arthur, the man who took over renting the place. Only he can see, hear, or touch her. After some initial disbelief on his part, they fall in love.


The novel is about the importance of the human soul. At a certain point of his life, Arthur thought his soul was lost. The moment that he is able to feel love again, he also finds the power to face his past (which isn't pretty).

After the body was returned to the hospital, Arthur and Lauren realized that their time together is ending. This is when they grasp the concept of carpe diem. They spent every possible second together, making the most out of every shared moment.

In 2005, the sequel to If Only It Were True was published, entitled Vous revoir. No official English translation has been published yet.