Sunday, April 1, 2012

Book Review: Memento Nora by Angie Smibert

Memento Nora

Angie Smibert


On an otherwise glossy day, a blast goes off and a body thuds to the ground at Nora's feet. There are terrorist attacks in the city all the time, but Nora can't forget. 

In Nora's world you don't have to put up with nightmares. Nora goes with her mother to TFC--a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic. There, she can describe her horrible memory and take a pill to erase it so she can go onlike nothing ever happened. But at TFC a chance encounter with a mysterious guy changes Nora's life. She doesn't take the pill. And when Nora learns the memory her mother has chosen to forget, she realizes that someone needs to remember. 

With newfound friends Micah and Winter, Nora makes a comic book of their memories called Memento. Memento is an 
instant hit, but it sets off a dangerous chain of events. Will Nora, Micah, and Winter be forced to take the Big Pill that will erase their memories forever? 

Angie Smibert's remarkable debut novel takes readers on a thrilling ride through a shadowy world where corporations secretly rule and consumerism is praised above all.


I have a soft spot for Dystopias, I have ever since my College English class which had been themed Dystopias and Utopias. Brave New World is a book that ingrained itself in my mind, so the Young Adult Dystopia boom both pleases and displeases me. Dystopias are meant to make you think and many YA Dystopias fail to reach that goal, instead focusing on trying to make an impression with romance, forbidden, rebelling and action. But sometimes a YA Dystopia is so good I don't really care. Memento Nora is one of those cases.

It doesn't fit on the most amazing, thought-provoking-Dystopias-ever shelf in my heart bookcase, but it did make me question things and wonder. I also enjoyed the format and the world that was created.

There was a lot that reminded me of the movie Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind. What would you do if you could just erase the bad things that have happened to you from your mind? Would you do it? The idea is interesting enough that it carries the book almost entirely on its own. And though the three main characters could be thought of cliché, I enjoyed how all three of them lived in very different home environments to try and show and shape the world of Memento Nora.

In Depth Spoiler Review

I have to admit I have a soft spot for Conspiracy Theories in Dystopias as well, and the fact that there is a THC conspiracy that is linked back to Nora's abusive father was a bit of a guilty pleasure. I also loved that even though the kids "lost" in the end they still "won".

The ninja grandfather and secret squad of conspiracy theorists almost felt intrusive in my mind, however, I would have loved it for the kids to figure out about the black vans without the information being handed to them.


A short, but enjoyable dystopic fluff is how I would describe this book. Smibert's prose is enjoyable to read and this book is a great way to let the rebel inside you have a field day.

I recommend this for people who enjoy seeing kids rebel against the system, for lovers of YA Dystopias of all kinds and those who enjoyed Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless mind and want to explore the idea of "What if you could just erase your unwanted memories" more.



Post a Comment