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Memento Nora

(Memento Nora #1)

3.48  ·  Rating details ·  1,037 ratings  ·  202 reviews
On an otherwise glossy day, a blast goes off and a body thuds to the ground at Nora's feet. There are terrorist attacks in the city all the time, but Nora can't forget.

In Nora's world you don't have to put up with nightmares. Nora goes with her mother to TFC--a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic. There, she can describe her horrible memory and take a pill to erase it so she can
Hardcover, 184 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Marshall Cavendish Children's Books
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3.48  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,037 ratings  ·  202 reviews

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Feb 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
I can say with certainty that this book had me from the first sentence:

“I’m about to forget everything I'm going to tell you.”

I adore this book. It’s different from anything else out there right now. Everything in it is something that we’ve possibly seen before, but the way Angie Smibert has put the different elements together felt completely fresh and wonderfully thought-provoking. It’s unusual for me to really enjoy a mostly plot-driven book, but that’s what Memento Nora is: a fast drive thro
The central gimmick of this book interested me. PTSD is a thing of the past. Just take one simple pill and those memories are gone, and the trauma with it. It's entirely voluntary, of course, but why wouldn't you take the pill? Why would you want to remember watching a man die in a terrorist attack, or that your husband regularly beats you? It makes for a dystopia (of the "everything is shiny on the surface but what is the cost?" type) that makes a great deal of sense. I can absolutely believe t ...more
This book was not for me. I was surprised when I first got it in the mail--it was a lot smaller than I had anticipated (both in page numbers and physical size.)Despite being less than 200 pages, I found it difficult to want to continue reading. The story just didn't draw me in. I didn't feel a connection to any of the characters. The chapters didn't end in cliffhangers. There weren't a lot of cliffhangers, actually. Not a lot happened.

I had very high expectations for this book, probably because
This review was originally posted on my blog, Creativity's Corner

This book was not what I was expecting, in any way shape or form. For one thing, it was smaller than I expected. It came from the library and it felt so tiny compared to the tomes I've become used to. For some reason, that made me even more excited to read it - it was something new and different!

From the moment I cracked open this book I felt like I was in a different world. The writing style was so different, and yet I was compl
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
Normally YA dystopias leave me cold, or lukewarm. But I really loved this one. A store called Fahrenheit Books blows up early on in the story, and that made me feel like Smibert actually knew classic dystopic literature. (A clear allusion to Fahrenheit 451.) Plus, there's a plausible reason for this dystopic culture of voluntary forgetting to have developed — "corporations and governments want more money and power" will always be plausible.

Everything fits together neatly, and there are hints (so
Arthur Pengerbil
Feb 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Reading Level: Grades 8 and up

"I'm about to forget everything I'm going to tell you." So begins the therapeutic statement of Nora James, age 15. Nora and her two friends Micah and Winter, are being held at the Detention Center for Therapeutic Forgetting. In a world filled with ramdom bombings, the authorities find that the people usually want to take the pill that will make them forget all the ugliness. Nora and her friend will be forced to take The Big Pill that will erase all memory of their
Oh, I have so many reviews to write, it's ridiculous...this one will be up soon though. Disappointing in some ways, and far too short. This is the second book in a row that I have read this week where I felt as though there were so many wasted opportunities; both were books that had such potential with their awesome story lines, which makes it that much more disappointing when they fail to meet their potential. Boo :(
Apr 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Review originally posted at:

Actual Rating: 3.5

Thought provoking in the possibilities it presents, Memento Nora is a story that causes us to shift a lot of our attention inward, wondering what we might do if erasing targeted memories was actually an option. So many fascinating questions are raised with such a deceptively simple premise, the idea of a pill to help us forget unwanted moments in time seeming pretty straightforward, but the implicat
May 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
The compact size of MEMENTO NORA threw me off, but don't they say that good things can come in small packages? Let me say that this package delivers quite the punch that you won't want to forget!

Nora, Micah, and Winter live in a world that reminded me of Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, but instead of messing with brainwaves, unforgivable and undesirable memories get erased with a swallow of a pill. The more you choose to forget, the more spending credits you get as a reward to shop and mo
Apr 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Angie Simbert’s Memento Nora isn’t the kind of thing I’d expect to find aimed at younger audiences. Near daily attacks drive people to Therapeutic Forgetting Clinics where with one little white pill they can leave their fears behind. Nora has her first visit after the bookstore she and her mother are about to visit blows up in front of them, dropping a dead body right at her feet. So, off to forget she goes, at least until she sees mystery guy Micah spit out his pill. At least until she hears wh ...more
Jun 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2011
If you could take a little white pill to forget all the traumatic events in your life... would you do it? Would the events that you have forgotten make your life different? Would it make you a different person?

It is not everyday that a book evokes all these questions and really makes you think about the events that shape who you are as a person. But Memento Nora tackles all these questions. And does so in a way that completely threw my brain for a loop.

Told through three teen point of views, re
Jan 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book is brilliant! A must read - period.
Sep 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Review to come...
Yay I think I will start posting reviews again...
Mike Mullin
Aug 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A chillingly plausible dystopian novel with my favorite kind of ending: one that leaves readers some space for their own interpretation of what just happened and what's coming next.
Bo Bruen
Aug 28, 2017 rated it liked it
The story of teenage rebellions against the expectations of their schools and their parents is a well traveled field however Angie Smibert brings a fresh perspective to the paranoia and rebellion of teenage life. Momento Nora, perhaps a play on the ancient Christian practice of Momento Nori, tells the story of Nora, the preppy rich girl, Micah, the artistic 'bad' boy from the wrong side of the tracks, and Winter, the quite but deeply observant anchor for the other two. The characters are a bit f ...more
Anastasia Tuckness
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: lora
(just upped my rating to 5 stars because of the lasting relevance of this book--2016.)

I really really enjoyed this book. It has a great combination of interesting characters, a setting that's all-too-believable in our near future, and enough action to keep it moving.

Nora has it all--a glossy Pink Ice mobile, a mom who takes her shopping whenever she closes a big real estate deal, a successful father, and a well-established place at the top of her social hierarchy. One day while shopping, she wit

Memento Nora is written from the viewpoints of three teens – Winter, Nora, and Micah – with the most central one being Nora. Each of these three characters has a distinctive voice that makes it easy for the reader to hop from one viewpoint to the next without getting confused. I found Nora to be relatable and fairly easy to sympathize with; yes, she was spoiled, thoughtless and somewhat shallow in the past, but since she's telling her story from a more mature understanding now, she co
Ava Rojas
Mar 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memento
This bock looks really good.....
Nov 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Memento Nora was a gripping, exciting and unique book. This dystopian world came about after numerous terrorist attacks. To keep people safe and to allow them to continue with their lives without constant memories of continuing terrorist attacks, everyone can take a pill and forget. Then, if they witness another terrorist attack or anything bad in general, they can take another pill and the unending process begins again. This leaves people feeling 'glossy'.

Memento Nora was really inventive. Thi
Emily S.
*Won ARC through a giveaway hosted by the author. This book will be released April 28, 2011*

When I first heard about this book, I was intrigued. There have been so many dystopian books published lately, and I wondered if this one would take things in a similar direction as the recent additions.

Nope. I was wrong. Flat out wrong. I finished this book in a couple of hours, couldn't put it down, and ended up with a big old WHHHAAAAAATTTTTTT going through my brain.

Here's the story, in brief: in Nora'
Keri Payton
What if all you needed to forget was a single pill? When Nora witnesses a terrorist attack, her mother takes her to the TCF – Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic. When terrorism is a dime a dozen, everyone makes frequent trips to the TCF and then goes about their lives as if nothing happened.

A chance run in with Micah, a boy from her school and the revelation of the memories her mother is desperate to forget, cause Nora to spit out her pill and choose to remember. Teaming up with Micah and his friend,
Dec 16, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: amnesia, teen, dystopian
This review was first posted on

I jumped all over this book when I first spotted it on Goodreads. I really love the cover, but that might have something do with the fact that I've lusted after that model's haircut for-freaking-ever, and long since resigned myself to the fact that my own hair will never look that good. Sigh. Still, I was pleased to receive a copy of Momento Nora for review. Not just because of the lovely cover and the great title. I was intrigued by the
Jan 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Momento Nora was engaging. It takes place in a futuristic United States, which is hauntingly reminiscent of 1984. It was a good reminder of why law enforcement should not be privatized.

In Nora's city, terrorist attacks happen nearly three times a week, forcing everyone to travel in armored vehicles, routinely visit Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic and even move to compounds. The compounds include malls, schools, movie theaters, etc., so that no one in the compound ever has to leave. Also, compound
Sep 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Full review posted at Amaterasu Reads

Would you rather forget things that can hurt you? Or remember and live on to tell it to the world?

This question has been going through my mind over and over while reading Angie Smibert's debut novel, the thought provoking, timely read, Memento Nora.

"Memento". Remember. It all started with that word. Had Nora not seen that on Mica's cast, she might not have chosen to not swallow that pill. Micah might not have known Nora, and Winter might not have been pulle
Schuyler Esperanza
Feb 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review originally blogged at Dystopian Divas:

Nora James is into having "glossy" days: ones spent shopping for the latest trends, watching her favorite shows, and spending time with friends just like her. So when she witnesses an event that won't leave her mind, she wants to go back to being glossy--by going, as so many do, to a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic (or TFC). Only once she's there, she decides she doesn't want to forget. This decision leads her to
Aug 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
Living in a world where terrorist attacks are so common place that there are clinics where citizens can go to have their memory of witnessing an attack erased, Nora witnesses a boy spit out his pill as he winks at her. She makes the quick decision to do the same, and so begins a journey into discovering whether everything society has been told, and forgets, is real or staged.

MEMENTO NORA is a book that delves into what it means to be able to forget anything bad that you see, or happens to you. I
In Nora's world, people are encouraged to do their duty as good consumers and buy plenty of products to help the economy. There is also the constant threat of terrorism, with things constantly being blown up, although the government does not want people to dwell on it. Instead, they are encouraged to go to a center, take a pill, and erase stressful memories. When Nora witnesses a horrific event and goes to the center for her pill, she encounters Micah, a boy who changes her entire world view. Bu ...more
Jan 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Some things are worth remembering and some things aren’t worth remembering, right?

For Nora, it was her first time at the Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic (TFC) because something had happened that her parents thought it was best for her to forget what had happened. People would then feel "glossy" about themselves after forgetting that memory. Waiting for her turn to forget this memory, a boy comes out showing that he did not swallow his pill. This pill helped people forget a specific memory.

When it
Jen  Bigheart
Dec 10, 2010 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars

Set 30-40 years in to the future, New York City isn't exactly paradise. Police patrol the city and there are mandatory curfews in place. People try to stay "glossy" by shopping from their cars and phones, but the truth is, unless you live in a compound with high security, the city is not the ideal place to live. After seeing a gruesome murder, Nora takes her first trip to the TFC - Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic. With one tiny pill, Nora can forget the incident ever happened. The TFC is
Mar 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
Memento Nora was a unique and twisted dystopian novel that I flew through in a couple of hours. The concept behind Memento Nora was very different from other dystopians and it was surprising to see how alike, yet so different, Nora's society was to our own. There are random bombings, organized social structure, and a pill you can take to forget, yet they also have bookstores, regularly attend school, and have a police force.

The novel was told in alternating perspectives of our three main charact
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I was born in Blacksburg, a once sleepy college town in the mountains of Southwest Virginia. I grew up thinking I wanted to be a veterinarian; organic chemistry had other ideas. But I always had stories in my head. Eventually, after a few degrees and few cool jobs—including a 10-year stint at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center—I wrote some of those stories down.

I'm the author of several young adult novel

Other books in the series

Memento Nora (3 books)
  • The Forgetting Curve (Memento Nora, #2)
  • The Meme Plague (Memento Nora, #3)
“I like things to be what they're going to be. Not what they were. Or could have been.” 4 likes
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