Tuesday, July 27, 2010

My Name is Memory - Ann Brashares

About the Book
My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares is about reincarnation and true love. Daniel remembers all of his past lives and through all of them he has loved and been looking for Lucy, who he thinks of as Sophia. It is rare that they are alive at the same time and the same age, but in 2006 he discovers they are. Lucy doesn't remember her past lives or Daniel but she does have strange dreams. Daniel struggles with wanting Lucy to remember and not wanting to push her so too hard and scare her away as he did at High School graduation. In the meantime Lucy has an encounter with a psychic which changes the way she thinks.

My Thoughts
I really enjoyed reading this book. The contemporary story is interwoven with Daniel and Lucy/Sophia/Constance's past lives. The romantic in me loves the idea that there is one true soulmate and that they find each other no matter who or where they are. I think the most touching scene of this in the book is when Daniel is about 5 and Lucy is an older woman and Daniel snuggles up to her in church.

There were a couple of parts that I really didn't like. *spoiler alert* The first was when Daniels brother from his first life turned up at Lucy's college and pretended to be Daniel. Lucy had been obsessing about the guy for years, and had spent time with him, yet she wasn't able to  recognise that it wasn't him.

The other part I didn't like was the end... it didn't wrap anything up, in fact new developments in the story line occured in the last couple of pages. There is nothing in the book to indicated that it was anything but a stand alone novel... it was only much digging around that I discovered that
it is the first part of a trilogy. This explains why it ended like it did. But it doesn't mean I have to like it.

As I was reading it though, the parts describing Daniel's past lives reminded me of Andrew McGahan's The Wonders of a Godless World . The two books are quite different as Brashares' book is about love and McGahan's is about consciousness, character and I think to an extent power. However they handle the reincarnation aspect in a similar way. Both main male characters remember their past lives in great detail and use those details in their subsequent lives.

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