Suddenly this book was everywhere and everyone seemed to read it. I only read positive words about The Memory Book and I, of course, became very curious. Even more, as I saw reviews about how they needed handkerchiefs for this book. Then it must be good, right? I waited so long to pick The Memory Book up because it didn’t sound like my cup of tea… All of the reviews I read were saying it was a really sad book, and (obviously) I didn’t want to get sad too. When I saw this book in the bookstore a few weeks ago, I wanted to give it a chance!
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.
The memory book is written as the notebook of Samantha/Sammie, which I think is a daring writing style from Laura Avery. Most of the books that are written in ‘diary form’ have to be completely immersed in the character to make it look as realistic as possible. In spite of most, in my opinion, failing, Laura Avery has really written a great book! In the beginning, I had to get used to the writing style, but this same style of writing ensures that you keep on reading the book until you can not let it go. Because of the fine phrases and the special language that Sammie has, you do not want to leave the book until you have slammed it with a sob.
“We have to get used to the idea that no one cares as much as us, because guess what, they don’t. Succeed, fail, whatever, no one is going to give you a pat on the back for spending all hours of the day studying, or researching, or giving up everything to write. So we’ve got to just do it for ourselves.”
Sammie is one of those characters that wander in my head -even though I’ve been out of the book for a while now, she has won a place in my heart. On some pages, you will have to laugh just like me, because of the wonderful personality that Sammie is. Sammie is a character who can be your friend, it is written realistically! Sammie keeps on being really a very positive, passionate and super funny person. I think she is really a role model and I have been able to laugh very loudly about comments she writes in her memory book.
Of course, there are a lot of moments in which Sammie is reminded of the fact that she will not walk around on earth forever – let alone, making her dreams come true, like studying in New York. This makes The Memory Book having a sensitive edge to the book. You know how it will end, but because of Sammie being so cool and positive, you do not want to know that Sammie is going to pass away in the end. Sobbing Alert! The end really did make me cry… Sammie loses more and more memories and the pages change from beautiful stories to a few sentences, sometimes a bit of a mess. It is really special how well Avery has studied the disease and how she can communicate this to the reader.
The Memory Book by Lara Avery is a wonderful book about a girl with a rare disease who, despite her lust for life, cannot grow old. It moves, inspires and makes you laugh. Avery is a great writer and I am very curious about her future work!
Did I love it? The Memory Book has won a place in my heart…
Would I reread it? I think not, it’s a ‘one read, one cry book’.
Who would I recommend it to? If you’re a big fan of john green, you should definitely try this one!
How many stars? 5/5
My name is Julia and I am a freshman journalism student at the University of Utrecht. On this blog, you can read about everything in my life, mainly about my reading and studying adventures. Have fun!
The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.”