26 February 2017

The Memory Book - Review

The Memory Book
by Lara Avery

What they say: 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.

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I received a copy from Books With Bite in exchange for an honest review!

What I say: Ugly cry alert!! I enjoyed The Memory Book, which is a strange thing to say about such a sad story, but Sammie is just so flipping charming! 

I have to admit I hadn't heard of Niemann-Pick Type C before reading Sammie's story. It is an incurable disease which counts amongst its many symptoms, a breakdown of cognitive function, difficulty moving and slurred speech. Lara Avery writes about Sammie's condition with sensitivity and compassion. It was heartbreaking to see Sammie's symptoms increase as her body starts to loose the battle against the disease. This is very clearly demonstrated by the journal entries.

The angst is off the charts but Lara Avery manages to incorporate some really sweet and funny moments with devastatingly sad ones. Sammie's family made me smile - I loved how they worked together as a supportive unit.

On to the romance. It's a little confusing at times and I couldn't really decide how much of this was down to Sammie's condition - it's too spoilery to say any more...

I wasn't entirely prepared for the emotional wreck this was going to turn me into but I loved Sammie's voice and am glad I read her story.

4 - 4.5 Stars in my Sky!

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