In My Name is Memory, Daniel has the gift of remembering past lives. and searches for his one true love, Sophia. He has encountered her many times through the centuries, but there's always something that keeps them apart. She doesn't remember her past lives, but for him it's heartbreaking to be apart from her. As they come together once again, separation and obstacles loom.
I loved this book. It had such a great premise and a beautifully written story. There was no doubt in my mind that Daniel was compelled to find Sophia and that they belonged together. The story was nicely laid out and even though it skipped around quite a bit in location and time, it was quite easy to follow. The author employed all kinds of techniques to help the reader in this regard. For instance: location and dates preceded each chapter; the past was written in the first person, while the present was written in the third person; two different fonts were used: one for the past, the other for the present.
There was one part near the end that was a little confusing with regards to Daniel (I don't want to give too many details lest I reveal a spoiler), but I found that if I slowed down a bit and read slowly I didn't have too much trouble following the action. All of this lead to a great ending.
I can't quite put my finger on it, but there was a little something missing in this book. I want to say that there wasn't enough depth, but I'm not sure if it's depth of character or depth of story. The only thing I can come up with is that Daniel had this great gift, which he could have used to do great things. However, his only concerned with finding Sophia. Even though he doesn't see her for centuries, that seems to be the only thing his does. It certainly was romantic and charming. However, maybe I'm not romantic enough, maybe I'm too old for this story, or too jaded. It left me wanting...just a bit. Nevertheless, I adored the whole premise and most of the story.
The book had me wondering about reincarnation. The "rules" that Brashares laid out seemed plausible and fascinating. The whole thing had me mesmerized. Without going into details, the existence of reincarnation would certainly explain a lot for me.
deigning (page 168): lowering yourself, forcing yourself
This is the first book I've read of Brashares. I haven't read the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, however, I've heard they are very popular. I'm not sure they are for me, but I'd gladly read another book by this author.
For more information about this book or to browse inside, please visit Penguin's website.
For more information about the author and her other books, please visit Ann Brashares's website.
I'd like to thank those nice people at Penguin for this review copy.
My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares, Riverhead (Penguin), ©2010. ISBN 9781594487583(Uncorrected Proof), 324p.