Vee is on a forced mental health hiatus until 16th June. See you then!

Review of Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

by - March 03, 2011

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 even have 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 know about her mom’s new family. She’d know about her dad’s fiancée. 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. 

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Amusingly enough I have Elsewhere but haven't read it yet. I'll certainly be digging it out after reading this though, I really enjoyed it. The cover feels English to me but the book is set somewhere in America. I'm useless with places in America, it all feels the same to me.

Naomi's character is instantly likeable - I could really understand why she was angry with her father and confused. She wakes up to find that her parents are divorced, her Father is getting married and she's dating a guy she doesn't even like.

I could also understand the other character's frustrations with Naomi, particularly Will. He's pretty much lost his best friend, as this new Naomi isn't interested in the Yearbook any more, couldn't care less about the mix tapes he's worked so hard on for her. She's more interested in James, the guy who found her.

James, from a psychologists point of view, is fascinating. He's a little bit weird and there's loads of rumours floating around about him, most of them true. He meets Naomi at a difficult stage in his life and he's scared of doing something wrong and going back to how he used to be.

I guess you could class this as a coming-of-age novel. It's witty, moving and really makes you think. What would happen if you woke up with 4 years of your life missing? What would you forget?


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