Friday, November 5, 2010

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

If Naomi had picked tails, she would have won the coin toss.

She wouldn’t have had to go back for the yearbook camera, and she wouldn’t have hit her head on the steps.

She wouldn’t have woken up in an ambulance with amnesia.

She certainly would have remembered her boyfriend, Ace. She might have even remembered why she fell in love with him in the first place.

She would understand why her best friend, Will, keeps calling her “Chief.” She’d get all his inside jokes and maybe he wouldn’t be frustrated with her for forgetting things she can’t possibly remember.

She’d know about her mom’s new family.

She’d know about her dad’s fiancee

She wouldn’t have to spend her junior year relearning all the french supposedly knew already.

She never would have met James, the boy with the questionable past and the even fuzzier future, who tells her he once wanted to kiss her.

She wouldn’t have wanted to kiss him back.

But Naomi picked heads.

My review:

If you’ve been following this blog at all, you should know that I hate books that can be described, in any shape, fashion, or form as, cliché.

That is more than likely the main reason I love Amnesiac so much! Plus, the author’s name is Gabrielle.

I don’t want to make this book out to be some plot-twist thriller, where you never see what’s coming and you can’t guess what will happen next. On the contrary, you can almost feel as if this could happen to you, but somehow the author, Zevin, takes this character, and the story to a whole knew realm of possibility with unpredictable storytelling. That is why this book is not cliché. They should stamp that onto the cover.

The best way to address the character of Naomi is to look at her men. Ace, James and Will, past, present and future, if you will, though one of them is rather constant throughout. Before, when Naomi was shallow and angry, Ace was her man, someone to look good and feel good with, but when she fell down the stairs and lost everything, that changed as well. Most likely because it was never real to being with.

Then she lands at James’ feet, quite literally, and the relationship is more about him needing a girl with a clean slate, so that he can move forward. Alright, I take it back, you can’t see the plot twists that involve this character, he’s unique, to say the least.

And finally Will…but that’s all I will say about that.

This is a great, and strongly written, story of new beginnings and having faith in the people you love, that they will come back to you, and that when they remember, they will forgive you.

Thoughts on the cover: It’s very interesting and pretty, in it’s own way.

Notes on the Names: Will is really a Will, it doesn’t come off as a placeholder name, which I find is very rare. Ace is a tool, Ace isn’t even his nickname. James does feel a bit place-holdery, I think Dean, Callum, Joshua, Reagan, something like that would have made a bigger impact on me name-wise. Naomi is awesome and blends a popular/artsy/kind heroine into one! Perfecto!

1 comment:

Kelly said...

Nice review. I hadn't heard of this one until now, but it's definitely on my TBR list now. :)