Tuesday, February 7, 2017
Books I've Read: The Memory Book
This was a heartbreaking book in many ways. Sammie is a smart, driven girl with a huge future in front of her. Then she's diagnosed with a disease that eats away at her memory. To begin with, she thinks she can deal with it. She's confident she can. She writes a journal to her future self to preserve the memories she wants to hold on to.
To begin with, the memory loss isn't too bad, just the odd episode here and there. Sammie is still confident she can follow her plans and graduate, go to college and live the life she's always dreamed of.
But as her condition deteriorates, Sammie has to accept her dreams are not going to be her reality. She discovers things about herself, her family and her friends that she's never taken the time to see before.
I guess it's kind of a cliche to suddenly start appreciating your life when the clock is ticking down on it, but I never felt like this book was falling into cliche territory. Sammie was a difficult character to get a handle on, but by the end of the book, I really liked her.
I also liked that some of her friends and family got to write in her memory book too. It gave another perspective because when you're reading the words of someone who is only writing stuff down because her memory is compromised, it's not always easy to trust everything that person says. The other perspectives gave more weight to the things Sammie was saying about herself and her relationships.
There were some things I didn't like about the book - Stuart, to start with. I never quite got why Sammie was so infatuated with him because he's kind of a douche. But I guess when you've been crushing on someone for years, it's difficult to accept the reality when they finally look your way.
But don't rely on me. Here's the blurb!
They tell me that my memory will never be the same, that I'll start forgetting things. At first just a little, and then a lot. So I'm writing to remember.
Sammie was always a girl with a plan: graduate at the top of her class and get out of her small town as soon as humanly possible. Nothing will stand in her way--not even a rare genetic disorder the doctors say will slowly start to steal her memories and then her health. What she needs is a new plan.
So the Memory Book is born: Sammie's notes to her future self, a document of moments great and small. It's where she'll record every perfect detail of her first date with longtime crush, Stuart--a brilliant young writer who is home for the summer. And where she'll admit how much she's missed her childhood best friend, Cooper, and even take some of the blame for the fight that ended their friendship.
Through a mix of heartfelt journal entries, mementos, and guest posts from friends and family, readers will fall in love with Sammie, a brave and remarkable girl who learns to live and love life fully, even though it's not the life she planned.