Published by Sourcebooks Fire on October 3rd, 2017
Amazon, Barnes & Noble , The Book Depository
Shelby is nervous to start her senior year after spending the whole summer away from home. After all, it’s hard to be carefree when you’re trying to protect a secret.
Shelby was in a devastating car accident, and everyone in town thinks that she was undergoing more physical therapy in Denver. Instead, Shelby’s mother enrolled her in a clinical program to stop the panic attacks that started after the crash. The treatment erased Shelby’s memory of the accident, but she can’t help feeling as if a piece of herself is missing, that the treatment took more than the doctors claimed.
So when Shelby starts hallucinating a boy with dark and mysterious eyes, she knows it must be a side-effect of the clinical program. Except you can’t kiss hallucinations. And this boy insists that they know each other and are in love...
Remember Me Always wasn’t at all like I expected, in a good and bad way. I thought this was going to be solely a romantically epic story, almost like the soul mate ones. The premise held that promise of heartache and enough swoon to curl your toes while also dreading the chaos that losing someone you love could have brought. Which actually happened and I enjoyed to bits. However, there is also the suspicion and doubt that erasing specific memories brings, and how the search for the truth is also bound by personal interests and biases.
20% into the novel, the trama was fairly simple revolving on the meeting of Shelby, and the boy that claims to be her love, Auden. I kept thinking, though, “Why is she so naively trustful of this or that? Why isn’t she wondering about the accident and why she’d forget him?”. It was frustrating at times, but the sweet and innocent moments compensated at least.
Then, quite suddenly, Shelby’s best friend set a doubt in me that I also got while reading The Secret History of Us by Jessi Kirby a month ago (memory loss theme as well). What if Auden is an abusive boyfriend seeking a second chance by being horribly manipulative? That doubt ate at my brain and shifted the story quite suddenly from romance to mystery. Shelby was finally looking for more answers! I didn’t know what to make out of Auden, though, as I completely loved this dark and ambitious character, but was dreading a revelation that would shift my view of him.
And it happened! Something happened and I was so conflicted. I also felt for Shelby, a victim of her own memory loss she imposed on herself as well.
Overall, it was a fun and thought-provoking story of friendship, family, love, but most importantly, finding yourself and forgiveness. I was at odds with the way the story was a romance and/or a mystery at times, and which one I wanted or liked best. But in the end, it was still interesting and picked my attention (I do love both genres). I look forward to reading more compelling stories by Renee Collins, who can get my heart to swoon or fill with rage over injustices and obstacle that are, quite greatly and inspiring, overcome.
Rating: 4 stars
Renee Collins grew up in Hawaii, where she played Lady Capulet in her high school production of Romeo and Juliet. In college, she decided to abandon her dreams of being a famous actress to study history and become a writer, but she’ll always have a soft spot in her heart for drama kids. Renee currently lives in Colorado with her family.
Visit her at http://reneecollinsauthor.com/
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/2hMZYhJ
Book Depository: http://bit.ly/2y15Ee1
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