Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac - Audiobook

The first thing that you must know about Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac is that you shouldn't expect it to be like Gabrielle Zevin's other book, Elsewhere. Well...not really. Ok, kinda. But mostly not really.

The similarities between the two lie in that they both have young female protagonists who find themselves dealing with things that no one really wants to deal with and along the way the also find themselves learning a lot about life and themselves and how to be good people and how to love. How's that for a run-on sentence?

After taking a dive down the school steps Naomi has lost about 4 years of her memory. She knows her name and her parent's names but she thinks it is about four years earlier than it actually is. She doesn't remember her best friend, her boyfriend or that her parents aren't together any more. She's retained her math and science knowledge but has lost all of her French and can't remember any of the books that she's read over the years. She doesn't remember that she loves playing tennis (which is how she met her boyfriend Ace) or that she loves yearbook (which is how she met her best friend Will). She doesn't remember who are the people at school that she likes and who she doesn't or why. She doesn't know who any of her friends are. So Naomi plunges forward the best she can, trying to hold onto a past that she doesn't remember. She tackles life, love and teenage angst all at once.

I really, really enjoyed Elsewhere and I wanted to like this one just as much. But I couldn't. Mainly because I HATED Will. HATED him. Normally he's the type of quirky character that I'd find entertaining - and maybe I still would have if I had read this book instead of listening to it. I honestly don't know if it was the narrator's Will voice (over all the narrator, Caitlin Greer was pretty good) or just the character himself but I really did not like Will. At all. And even though Will isn't the main character and goes away for chunks of time he really killed my enjoyment of the book.

All that aside, it's a really interesting twist on the coming of age story. Would you be the same you that you are now if you had lost the formative years between 12 and 16? Would you still love the same things that you loved at 16 (and when we are 16 we do tend to love things with unequaled passion) if you woke up one day and didn't remember that you love it? Would you find yourself pulled toward the same people you did before? Or would you latch on to someone who is just as fragile as you are but in different ways?

Really interesting premise. If only I hadn't hated Will so much. sigh.