The Memory Book by Laura Avery


Holy crap, y'all. If this book isn't on your list, CHANGE THAT IMMEDIATELY.

Because this novel is captivating and heartbreaking and completely relatable in that I-totally-relate-to-this-even-though-I-have-never-experienced-what-this-character-is-experiencing kind of way. Simple, tragic, beautiful--this book is the complete package. I am so glad I was able to grab an early copy at work.

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.

Sammie is an unforgettable, honest, unique character. I've never read a book about a girl like her--and that has nothing to do with her disease. She's fiercely independent and high achieving, yet insecure and confident and stoic all at the same time. I loved being inside of her head.

The slow-building romance gave me life. It really did. It was adorable and tragic and perfect all at the same time. It's interesting, because this could have easily drifted into love triangle territory, but it gracefully maneuvered it. And dodged that train because of the slow building. A girl getting the boy she's always wanted is great. But the girl who loves one of her oldest gets me every time.

The writing was very impressive. It was easily readable, but touching and gripping. This book had one minimal flaw, that's not even worth mentioning. Because the one flaw is buried by the 350+ pages wonderful story.

And the last six pages are magnificent. I was sobbing, and continued to sob for several minutes after the the book ended. It was so beautifully concluded. I couldn't ask for a better story arc than the one is this novel.

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