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Teach Me to Forget

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  625 Ratings  ·  121 Reviews
An alternate cover edition exists here.

This is the story of Ellery, a girl who learns how to live while waiting for the date she chose to die.

Ellery's bought the gun, made arrangements for her funeral, and even picked the day. A Wednesday. Everything has fallen into place.

Now all she has to do is die.

When her plans go awry and the gun she was going to kill herself with br
Hardcover, 287 pages
Published December 2nd 2016 by Simon Pulse
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Popular Answered Questions

Erica Chapman Great question! I picture Ellery as Margaret Qualley, I saw her first in the HBO series the Leftovers, Mandy from Forever Young Adult suggested Maude…moreGreat question! I picture Ellery as Margaret Qualley, I saw her first in the HBO series the Leftovers, Mandy from Forever Young Adult suggested Maude Apatow and I agree both would be great. For Colter I love Dylan O'Brien.(less)
Erica Chapman 14-18 yrs old is what my publisher gives. It definitely deals with some heavy topics. I would say upper YA readers. Hope that helps!

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Erica Chapman
Oct 11, 2015 Erica Chapman added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: i-wrote-this-omg
Thank you so much for stopping by the TMTF page ;o) Please feel free to ask me questions. I love talking to fellow readers!

Please understand that while I add a good mix of humor and sarcasm into Ellery's character, TMTF does have triggers such as suicide, depression, and loss of a loved one. Please read and discuss this topic with someone you love. Read other books that deal with similar subjects like Kathleen Glasgow's GIRL IN PIECES, or books by Ellen Hopkins or Jennifer Brown, and countless o
Zainab Shah
Apr 01, 2017 Zainab Shah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: faves
The story is of a 17 year old girl named Ellery who has decided to kill herself. Her 6 year old sister had died a year ago and she blames herself for that. Ellery has decided the date and has saved up money for her funeral- now all she has to do is pull the trigger. But it turns out that the gun is broken. She goes to the store to replace the gun where a security guard of her age catches her. He turns out to be Colter,his classmate. Colter is now d
Brenda Drake
Oct 14, 2015 Brenda Drake rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to read an early version of TEACH ME TO FORGET. Erica can write emotion and multi-layered characters so well. I found myself crying and laughing while reading. This story has so much heart and all the feelings. I couldn't put it down until the end. So amazing!
Karen Hattrup
May 29, 2016 Karen Hattrup rated it it was amazing
TEACH ME TO FORGET is a poignant and unflinching look at Ellery, a teenage girl who has suffered serious trauma and wants to take her own life. Written with honesty and care, it’s a story that is deep with compassion and sympathy for its protagonist, even as it examines – through other characters – the repercussions that suicide has on those left behind. This is dark and difficult subject matter, but it’s handled with a deft touch, and, best of all, is driven by a wonderful narrator. Ellery is w ...more
Amy's Book Reviews
When Ellery's plan to commit suicide are thwarted by a broken gun, her classmate Colton tries to change he mind. He couldn't save his his brother from killing himself, and vows to do better.

TEACH ME TO FORGET is an irresponsible, possibly even dangerous story about what teenagers should absolutely not do if they are concerned about a suicidal friend.

When Ellery notices similar suicidal tendencies in a childhood friend, she tries to talk to Dean and checks up on him when he misses school. Folks,
Nov 02, 2015 Kerri rated it it was amazing
One of the most heart wrenching, funny, beautiful, dark, swoon-worthy, and hopeful stories I've ever read. This masterful debut features cracks of light that not only shine through, but shatter the darkness of depression and living through loss. I loved and rooted for Ellery the entire book. Chapman's writing is poignant and infinitely readable. I will be fangirling over this for a long time to come. This is a must-read, now and always.
Apr 01, 2017 Nadine rated it it was amazing
Trigger warning: self-harm, suicide, suicidal ideation
**I started adding these trigger warning to my reviews when I noticed other people adding them as a way to help those who are sensitive to those topics. I never put much stock in it until now. These trigger warnings are very real. If you are even the slightest bit sensitive to self-harm, suicide, or, suicidal ideation do NOT read this book.

Teach Me to Forget is not what I thought it would be. I was expecting a story about a girl's failed su
Melanie Hooyenga
Oct 11, 2015 Melanie Hooyenga rated it it was amazing
I read an early version of this book and my first reaction was "everyone needs to read this." Erica has an amazing ability to create characters who make you laugh and cry and want to hold them close. This story has stayed with me long after I read it and I encourage anyone who wants a book that will knock them off their feet to give it a try.

EDIT: I've now read the final version and love it even more. THIS IS A MUST READ.
Dec 09, 2015 Jude rated it it was amazing
A beautifully haunting novel, with a funny & smart narrator. I read this back in 2012 and I still think about Ellery and Colter to this day, three years later!
Marina Zala
** Books 42 - 2017 **

2,9 of 5 stars!

The premise looks promising but I dunno why this books is not really captivating me. It is just about story who finally didn't suicides herself since love is saving her. i'm kinda wondering is it an author fans of Nicholas sparks? I found "The Notebook" being wrote down in this pieces.

Jay G
Dec 29, 2016 Jay G rated it liked it
Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my YouTube Channel:

3.5 Stars

When Ellery had her suicide all planned out. She knows the day, she hired a cleaning crew she even made funeral arrangements. She definitely was not anticipating that her gun would break. She tries to return the gun, only to find that she has the wrong receipt. Just her luck, the security guard who stops her is a boy from her English class, Colter Sawyer. Realising what she wa
Lisa Mandina
Dec 10, 2016 Lisa Mandina rated it it was amazing
If you read and appreciated Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, this is a book that to me is just as good. It's about a girl who is going to commit suicide. It's done from a different aspect than Asher's book. This is told as the girl is going through her actual plan.

This book is so good. The way Ellery feels is described very well. Her being so set on the whole idea was heartbreaking, but you could kind of see her reasoning, or at least why it made sense to her. I have had my own issues with de
Lily Grant
Jan 20, 2016 Lily Grant rated it it was amazing
5 / 5 stars

I savored the words, processed the phrases and slowly fell deeper into the characters. A moment separated her from life and death and in-between those moments, I stood at the edge alongside her.

Trembling hands held firmly onto sanity that occasionally mixed with reality. My pulse danced alongside my heart as the ache from Ellery's heart pierced into mine.

Instances of humor lit my face on fire with bursts of laughter.

Colter and Ellery were each others opposites as well as each others e
Adriana Mather
May 23, 2016 Adriana Mather rated it it was amazing
This heart wrenching story of a high school senior is beautifully and delicately written. Chapman is masterful in her treatment of 17-year-old Ellery and her struggles with guilt and depression following the death of her younger sister and the breakdown of her parents' marriage. Ellery captured my heart and I found myself pulling for her to heal from her trauma. Brava!
Dec 17, 2016 HelEinir rated it did not like it
This book wouldn't have a plot if someone had cared to get Ellery a good grief-counselor and made sure she stuck with him/her until they were certain she was alright (The fact that someone as transparent as this girl managed to fool her therapist into thinking she was "fine" is beyond me).

It's been a while since I last read a book that tried so hard it gave me second-hand embarrassment so badly that I almost gave it two stars out of pity. The writing, the characters, the plot (which although not
Mar 04, 2017 Grace rated it it was amazing
Really really really really good!
Tabitha Lord
Jan 17, 2017 Tabitha Lord rated it it was amazing
Ellery Stevens plans to kill herself. Her sister’s tragic death, for which she blames herself, still haunts her, and the weight of guilt and loss seems never to abate. But Ellery’s plan fails, and she’s forced to live just a little longer. Laced with equal parts tragedy and humor, Teach Me To Forget compassionately and bravely tackles the subject of teen suicide. Ellery’s voice is authentic and her pain heartbreaking. But the book also finds hope and joy blossoming amidst the angst. Read my inte ...more
Caitlin Christensen
Feb 01, 2017 Caitlin Christensen rated it really liked it
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You know a book is going to be intense when it starts out with a literal “bang.” Ellery has a gun and she is absolutely not afraid to use it – in fact, we meet her mere minutes before she pulls the trigger and attempts to commit suicide. It’s a decidedly dramatic way get to know someone.

But when the gun refuses to go off, foiling her suicide attempts, Ellery’s life gets more complicated than ever as she hurries to come up with ano
Dec 19, 2016 Jenn rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Thirteen Reasons Why
I went into this book knowing that it dealt with very harsh subject matter. Depression and suicides are nothing to be taken lightly so I was interested in how Chapman would present this. And while I didn't agree with the actions of certain people in the book, there was a good amount of realism present.

The book opens with Ellery about to kill herself. She has everything planned out - right down to hiring the cleaning service to take care of the mess so her mother doesn't have to. But when the sh
Melissa Robles
Dec 02, 2016 Melissa Robles rated it it was amazing
*This review can also be found at The Reader and the Chef! Thanks to Merit Press for sending me a copy in exchange of my unbiased opinion.*

Oh, my heart. I just finished reading Teach Me to Forget and I. Can't. Stop. Feeling. All of the emotions. Love. Hate. Anger. Frustration. So much sadness. Ugh. But I loved this book. So darn much.

I have to be honest with you guys and tell you that despite my love for contemporary books, I tend to stray far away from emotional reads. Not that they are not goo
Oct 12, 2015 Hannah rated it it was amazing
Where to begin... I've witnessed this book grow from its earliest stages into what it has become now, and I have to say, I love, love, love what it has blossomed into! Erica is really good at blending the lighter and darker elements in the story of Ellery's life, and that balance worked to evoke a large array of emotions from me. She had me laughing out loud a few times, and sniffling and teary-eyed a decent amount of times. The characters Erica creates feel so real, I feel like I personally kno ...more
Wayne K
Sep 16, 2016 Wayne K rated it it was amazing
I was going to read this with my 17 year old daughter...but she devoured it overnight... So I ended up reading out of pure enjoyment. Erica does a masterful job of story telling. She pulled me in and reminded me of childhood memories I had long forgotten and wanted to leave that way. By the end of the book I was vocally cursing Ellery for her antics! A worthwhile read... if you are going to read with your children, I recommend reading it before you give it to them... once they start...they canno ...more
Amber Smith
Sep 13, 2016 Amber Smith rated it it was amazing
In this stunningly brave and necessary debut, Erica Chapman takes us on a journey to the edge and back—exploring grief, depression, and suicide with candor, insight, and above all, hope.
Mar 18, 2017 Amy rated it really liked it
Like a better written, more socially conscious Thirteen Reasons Why. Actually shows what to do for teenagers in that position at the end.
Apr 04, 2017 Shannon rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Mar 01, 2017 Kelly rated it liked it
I would have picked to kill myself on a Friday, but Mom works the weekends, and I don't want her to have to worry about cleaning up my dead body on a Friday. A Wednesday is better.

Mixed feelings.

Frankly? I understood a lot of what Ellery felt. The defeat. The knowledge that she's being selfish but the understanding that the pain won't stop. She's suicidal and guilt-ridden, and all she wants to do is die. And she has a plan.

When the gun won't fire, a frustrated Ellery figures she can return it an
Dec 25, 2016 Emma rated it liked it
Shelves: bea-read
Ellery is going to kill herself. She has chosen the day and purchased the gun. She even booked a cleaning service to come right after so that her mother won't have to deal with it. She has given away her possessions and broken away from her all of her friends except for Jackson Gray who remains frustratingly loyal. Ellery is ready to die until the gun breaks when she tries to shoot herself.

Certain that shooting herself is the only viable suicide option she has, Ellery tries to return the faulty
Jan 11, 2017 Teenreadsdotcom rated it it was amazing
Most teenagers look forward to their birthdays, proms and vacations. Ellery looks forward to the day she has chosen to commit suicide. After battling depression for a year, she has decided she just wants it all to go away. But when the gun breaks during her attempt to use it, all her plans go down the drain. Frantic, she drives to the Kmart nearby in order to return the defective gun for a new one. Only one problem: she has the wrong receipt and is caught by the security guard who just happens t ...more
Dec 08, 2016 Roxanne rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Thank you to Merit Press for sending me a copy of the book in exchange for a fair review.

Erica wants to die, she has a plan, but when the gun doesn't work after several attempts she decides she has to return it and make a new plan. However, she mistakenly returns to Kmart instead of Walmart and she ended up having to talk to the security who just happens to be Colter, a boy from her school. Colter knows something is off, and he sets off to figure out what is going with Ellery.

Ellery makes a new
John Clark
Jan 26, 2017 John Clark rated it it was amazing
Ellery has reached that point...the one where looking ahead shows nothing good, looking back sucks and the pain of today is too much. She decides to kill herself with the cheap shotgun she conned a casual friend into buying for her. When she pulls the trigger, it misfires and, after multiple trigger pulls with it aimed at her, she blows a hole in the ceiling with the one shell she has. In the course of trying to return it and either get a refund or one that works, she goes to the wrong big box s ...more
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Reading Addicts : Teach Me to Forget by Erica M. Chapman 03/11/17 12 5 Mar 16, 2017 11:06AM  
  • To Catch a Killer
  • Flower
  • Love and First Sight
  • The Weight of Zero
  • The Perfect Ending
  • The Gallery of Unfinished Girls
  • Dear Martin
  • When Dimple Met Rishi
  • The Hidden Memory of Objects
  • Girl in Pieces
  • American Street
  • Alterations
  • The Continent (The Continent, #1)
  • You're Welcome, Universe
  • Last Seen Leaving
  • The Edge of Everything
  • Little & Lion
  • #famous
Erica M. Chapman writes dark, emotional YA novels with a burst of humor, and lighter contemporaries with smart-ass protagonists. Her debut novel, TEACH ME TO FORGET (Simon & Schuster) is out now! She's a member of SCBWI & Sweet16s, and a lifetime Lions and Michigan football fan who loves alternative music. She loves to tweet and watch various CW & Freeform shows while typing her next s ...more
More about Erica M. Chapman...

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“Remind me again, why are you talking to me? I thought we had an understanding. I said I wasn’t a petri dish and you agreed.” 1 likes
“You should have just left me there.”

He pulls out of the cemetery and onto the road. “Don’t be so dramatic. Besides I told you I would never leave you. Just like you never left me.”

“I think you’ve repaid that debt, Jackson Gray.”

He shakes his head. “So quickly you forget our pact.”

I put my foot on his dash and hold my hands in front of the vents. I still can’t believe he’s still rescuing me, years later. “Who could forget that. You were cowering on the floor of the library.”

“I wasn’t cowering.”

“Okay. You were leaning down to get a book when large bullies materialized in front of you.” I glance at him. “Is that better?”

He rolls his eyes. “No one’s ever done something like that for me before. Even though I’d never admit a girl fought one of my battles.”

I adjust the seat belt so it’s tighter. “Get over it, Jackson Gray. I did what anyone would do.”

“No one else would have stuck up for the new kid.” He shrugs. “Is that the type of person you’d leave freezing in a cemetery?”

“You mean, you’d leave other people freezing in a cemetery?”

He sighs and nudges me in the shoulder. “Just shut up.”
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