Caroline's Reviews > My Name is Memory

My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares
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's review
Jun 27, 2010

it was ok
bookshelves: urban-fantasy, young-adult

This is a great book that I enjoyed reading a lot.

At first I was taken aback by the similarities with Fallen (storyline and names), not in the sense that they copied on each other, but in the sense "what are the odds to use the same names?". So I've been doing some research on the names (yes, I am that geeky) and haven't found anything relevant so I'm still very curious about it if anyone has an explanation (there is *nothing* like a mystery to keep you up at night - I so don't believe in coincidences).

I find the whole concept of Daniel keeping his memory one life through the other to be fascinating. And yes I have been imagining my previous lives: I can only come up with rock star, witch and suffragette. I find all the historical parts extremely interesting, I love it when books offer a historical perspective to some situations, it gives characters a certain insight on the events, and this book is absolutely amazing for this.

I find that there has been a clear effort on words, rhythm and the musicality of sentences. Though the story is quite slow in its evolution, I found that it fits perfectly with the pace set by the storytelling. I'm not sure if I explain it right, but I found the writing very impressive compared to the paranormal romance stories I've read lately.

I liked the character of Daniel and how he dealt with his memory in opposition to Ben. I'm not saying that he is right or that it is the best way (I prefer Ben's way) but I find his point of view and his doubts interesting to read. I absolutely adore the character of Ben. He is amazingly (as in, shrouded in mystery just like I love my characters in books!) and there is so much meaning behind its different incarnations that it was a real pleasure to read his small appearances in the story.

I like the role of women in the story: Lucy/Sophia/Constance are different, yet very much alike, characters, and they have such a profound effect on Daniel. I particularly liked reading about one of Daniel's latest mother, Molly and the relation they had, or more precisely hadn't, with each other.

I know the most important point of the book is the romance, and even though I enjoyed the love story at first, I got a little tired with it and I am more interested in the other aspects of the book.

I have to admit that towards the ends I have fallen a little out of the story. I'm not getting the whole Joaquim (Daniel's brother) thing, may it be his vengeance or how he reincarnates.
I am also a bit surprised about the ending. I'm assuming that a sequel is in the works, otherwise I just don't get the ending at all.

So all in all I thoroughly enjoyed a large part of the book, and I think that the language used, the memory/reincarnation plot and the general tone of the book are incredible, but some tiny details towards the end tend to bring a bit more reservations from me.

If there *is* a sequel though, I will most definitely read it to understand better the whole concept of memory which I found absolutely fascinating.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
June 27, 2010 – Shelved
April 9, 2011 – Shelved as: urban-fantasy
April 9, 2011 – Shelved as: young-adult

Comments (showing 1-12 of 12) (12 new)

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message 1: by Lauren (new) - added it

Lauren Hi Caroline -

I too was amazed by the similarities with Fallen. I had just finished Fallen when I read a synopsis of this book and ran out to get it. I admit, like you, I tried to figure out why the same names/concept could have been used and haven't been able to come up with anything. But you're not alone! :-)

message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

It's a trilogy, that's why it had such a non-ending.

Lisa Ahhh! When i first read the synopsis i was thinking "this is the synopsis for Fallen! Not for this book" i was so convinced that everywhere had stuffed up because it seemed WAY to coincidental!!! Good to know i'm not the only one! haha

message 4: by Mihaela (new)

Mihaela I have to agree, i found the book today on the shelf in Dymocks and read the synopsis.... first thing i thought of was Fallen.
I was very surprised.

Lighthearted I also noticed the similarity to Fallen. I wonder if Ann read it and the names just stuck with her since there were other similarities to her idea.

message 6: by Elle (new)

Elle Kaye Agreed, this sounds so much like fallen; the names, the fact that daniel remembers and lucy doesn't. it really can't be a coincidence. The back cover of one of the copies looks exactly like fallen. i actually thought it was fallen for a moment. sooooo weird

message 7: by Thomas (new)

Thomas the plots are almost the same. the names are almost the same. the cover is almost the same. this is plagiarism!!

message 8: by Desu (new)

Desu Yeah.. I jus read the description.
And was like where have I seen this before.. I probably wont read this. I liked Fallen but I wouldn't wanna read a wanna-be copy.

Amanda That was what I thought after I'd found out about Fallen. Both books came out within a month of each other, if I remember correctly and the name thing just blew my mind. I couldn't believe two different authors in different parts of the country were thinking up such similar stories.
But if you really understand the real point of My Name is Memory (and I haven't read Fallen so I can't speak for that book) then you understand that we are all connected. I don't believe in past lives on this planet but I do believe in a past life when we just existed as souls.
And These two books are not the only examples of similar occurrences in entertainment like movies: volcano & Dante's peak, Armageddon & deep impact, and i know there are others i just cant think of them at the moment; how about all the books in YA about mermaids that have come out recently. You know all those authors didn't get together and plan that. My point is, we are all connected and so our world moves through stages like that where it seems we are all thinking of the same things at the same time. Odd how that works isn't it? And yet it makes sense at the same time.

Amanda I just have to add that My Name is Memory was published jan 1, 2010 and fallen was published dec 8, 2009. No way they could have copied each other. the hardcovers are actually drastically different from each other. And the publishers pick the covers not the authors. Usually paperback covers are different from their hardcovers because the publishers want to reach more audiences so to speak, so the two publishers must have been thinking alike in terms of the American paperback covers. Just thought I'd clear that up for those of you who can't bother to do their research.

message 11: by Miss (new) - rated it 5 stars

Miss Gemini Amanda makes a great point. I find it ridiculous for someone to decide not to read it because of coincidence, and yes that is all that is possible. Anne Brashares mentioned that this story and it's characters were in her head for quite some time before they were put on paper. It isn't possible for a book, no one had heard of, to have a copy of it written, edited, and published in the span of one month. If people choose not to read it based on conspiracy theory it is their loss, and I'm sorry they won't experience this book. I like the way the reviewer researched the names, and it is an interesting idea to look at. I looked at it in another way, and it is based on life experiences I've had. I chose uncommon and somewhat unusual names for my children. A woman pregnant at the same time also picked one of the names but neither of us knew until discussing it later. I've known 4 families that have had at least 2 dogs in their home and the dogs had been given the same names without the families knowing one another. I was their only connection, and names for their pet was never discussed. Some times people have names they love and it isn't uncommon for them to replicate. I have been working on a story for a couple of years, I've never shared the information with anyone, but a new television show has the same set up and scenario as my story. I would hate to be accused of copying it when I had the idea long before anything was a show.

message 12: by Clare (new) - added it

Clare H I'm going to a book con this year and Ann Brashares is one of the authors going so I was looking into her books and started thinking that it sounded so much like Fallen even down to the character names. I thought it was odd, but they obviously didn't copy each other, and I still really want to read this book. :) I'm glad you did that research and posted a comment about it on here because I was really considering looking it up instead of doing homework haha :) so yeah

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