Samantha Oledan's Reviews > My Name Is Memory

My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares
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Nov 08, 11

bookshelves: owned, love-story, serious-books, reincarnation, great-cover, fantasy, books-i-did-not-enjoy, adult-fiction
Read from October 20 to 26, 2011 — I own a copy

** spoiler alert ** -------My complete review (updated)---------

As I said in my previous review of this book, I didn’t like the story. I felt depressed, tired and alone the entire time that I was reading it. I don’t know if it was because of how the story goes or it was just because I am a shallow person who couldn’t appreciate this kind of plot. Either way, I’m still entitled to my own opinion, so here goes my review:

1. At first I got attracted by this book because of its cover. There was something mysterious with the theme, the color and by the picture of a girl emoting in the middle of nowhere, just like what got me into reading Lauren Kate’s Fallen . Then I read the summary at the back and I got surprised because the plot was strangely similar to Fallen: star-crossed lovers who got separated again and again and again for how many centuries. The boy knows the girl but the girl does not remember the boy but feels a strange connection to him. Another weird similarity was that the guys from both books were called Daniel. The name of the girl in Fallen was Luce, while the girl in Memory was called Lucy which sounded like the former. So out of curiosity I decided to buy the book. I wanted to know if they really have the same plot.


2. I was bored even at the start. I thought it was just a matter of getting the feel of the story so I continued reading it. I got turned off at the part where Lucy and Daniel had their first ever conversation inside a dark classroom while the whole school was in chaos (there was a crime scene outside). They barely knew each other but Lucy allowed Daniel to kiss her while his knee was nearly inside her dress and her own knee almost touching his crotch (not verbatim, but that was how it was described in the book). Sure, Daniel knew her from many lives, but Lucy had no memory of that so technically she barely knew him. I don’t think it’s proper to have a make-out session with someone you don’t know even a little back ground. Well, I don’t know if this is how people do it in other places, but I came from a pretty conservative country and things like this offend me somehow.


3. How could you fall in love with someone you just caught a glimpse of while they were trapped inside a burning house, even if you were the one who accidentally caused it? If that happened to me I would surely feel guilty, angry and ashamed of myself. But to fall in love immediately? I don’t think so. Daniel kept on searching for Lucy (Sophia in her past life) every life cycle he had to ask for forgiveness and he kept on insisting that they love each other. Sure, asking for forgiveness is acceptable, but saying that you love each other in your past life is kind of creepy.


4. I think the only sensible and likable character in the story was Ben. Like Daniel, he had the Memory that lives on and on even in his succeeding lives. He said that Daniel should learn to let go of the past so he could appreciate his present life. It would be so much easier not only for him, but for the people around him. Ben changes his physical shell (he could be a male in one life cycle and became a female on the next) and his entire self every time he was reborn to adapt to his new environment and new family. But Daniel kept his old self, not his physical body but he always ended up as a male, and he always insisted that his new parents name him Daniel because he wanted Sophia to recognize him. I really like what Ben said when he became a girl in one of his lives, that he just go with the flow and accept his new life so it wouldn’t be hard for his new mother. Daniel, on the other hand, took his lives for granted because he knew that he’d get another one and he just focused on finding Sophia.


5. I really, really, really hated the part where he took his own life with the hopes of being reborn again with Sophia (perhaps within the same age range). He said that in that life he had the best family, especially the best mother, but still took it for granted. He even said that he didn’t allow her mother to love him so much nor him to get attached to her so neither of them would be hurt when death comes. He wasted that opportunity to have a good life, a good family, a healthy and not nearly-dying body just to follow someone who didn’t even recognize him. He even knew that there could be a possibility that he might not be reborn again. Then on his current life, he returned to the place where he used to live in his past life and he saw his past mother weeping at his old body’s grave. He felt so bad and regretted leaving his old life untimely.


6. I only got excited at the parts where the present time was being told, and it was on the last parts of the book. But then I lost my interest again while they were trapped in the island with Daniel's past-life brother who was taking revenge on them. It was supposed to be an intense, heart-pounding moment and they should be running for their lives, but instead they kept on thinking about making love in between planning for their get-away. I didn’t feel the adrenaline rush. The excitement that was about to build up instantly crashed down. The story wasn’t able to sustain the climax.


7. The ending was… blah! BITIN!!! It wasn’t really a happy ending. Not that somebody died or something bad happened, but it’s just that… nothing really happened. There was no conclusion. Lucy was pregnant and she was living among the monks while Daniel was far away, in who knows where. After centuries of searching for each other, or rather, Daniel searching for Lucy, they didn’t even end up together. It was not because they broke up, but because Daniel decided to hunt for his past-brother to stop him from harming them again. Well, probably, there ought to be a sequel that's why the ending was hanging. But I definitely won't be reading it!!!


After reading My Name is Memory , I conclude that it was definitely not like Lauren Kate’s Fallen. They totally have different plots. I even enjoyed reading Fallen even if the protagonist was annoyingly boy-dependent. But in this book, I never had any feel-good moments. I couldn’t even justify to myself why I bought this book.

Well, on the good side, I really appreciate Ben’s thoughts about life, but that’s it.




------Incomplete review after reading the book-----
I was torn between giving this book a 2 or 3 star-rating. I felt so tired reading this book. For me, it was not a feel-good story. Complete review to follow.



-------- My comment before reading the book-------
Weird.
When I saw this in National Bookstore I thought it was a new edition of Lauren Kate's Fallen because of the cover. They both posessed that gothic feel, with an emo girl. Then I read the description at the back, and I was shocked to know that the main guy was named Daniel, just like in Fallen. Then I read the summary here in GR and found out that the main girl was named Lucy, which was very close to Fallen's Luce. And I have a feeling that they both have the same theme in terms of reincarnation, the boy knows the girl from their many past lives, but the girl doesn't rememeber him but feels an unexplainable attraction to him.

Well, I don't know for sure. I'm so curious about this book so I think I'm going to read this sometime.
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Reading Progress

10/25/2011 page 268
67.0% "I was kinda bored at the beginning. I'm only starting to appreciate the story now that I'm in the middle part."

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Andrea (new) - added it

Andrea it's kinda creepy,isn't it?having ALMOST the same theme, characters, covers.
i don't see this book in national bookstore though.where're you from? Manila?


Samantha Oledan hi, andrea.
I live in quezon city.
yeah, I also went to NBS last week and all the "Memory" books were gone.
but I saw some in Powerbooks.
are you planning to read it too? :D


Shxrxn agree. i saw it yesterday at nbs cubao. i even thought it was daniel's version of story but i was surprise to see it was from different author.


message 4: by Ann (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ann I am not sure that a book has to be "feel good" to be a good book. It was Daniels struggle with the limitations and unhappiness that he creatd in his own life because he could not be like Ben and live in the moment that was the interesting part of this book. That was kind of the point of the book.


message 5: by Rozus (new) - added it

Rozus I felt depressed too !


Isolde Marie there's no sequel and i got the different cover of the book with the title has format that resembles fireworks. It gives a feel that this is about Lucy from beginning till the end and she supposed to find Daniel and kind of saves him. the cover feels like paranormal/mystery/romance in a YA but it should classified it as NA. well it's not that bad of book i got from booksale for P75 but i still wish it had a sequel. IT is so bitin...


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