Saturday, November 14, 2009

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

Grade: B


If Naomi had picked tails, she would have won the coin toss. She wouldn't have had to go back for the yearbook camera, and she wouldn't have hit her head on the steps. She wouldn't have woken up in an ambulance with amnesia. She certainly would have remembered her boyfriend, Ace. She might even have remembered why she fell in love with him in the first place. She would understand why her best friend, Will, keeps calling her "Chief". She'd know about her mom's new family. She's know about her dad's fiancee. She never would have met James, the boy with the questionable past and the even fuzzier future, who tells her he once wanted to kiss her. She wouldn't have wanted to kiss him back.


Character Development: 6/10
Originality: 8/10
Overall Enjoyment: 6/10
Ending: 9/10
Voice: 7/10
Setting: 8/10
Plot: 6/10
Total Score: 50/70

Obtained: Library.

Age Appropriate? PG-13

Cussing: Some throughout.
Drugs, Alcohol, etc: Teen drinking and drunkenness, teen smoking and drug use.
Sexual Content: No actual scenes, but a lot of discussion/narration/etc.
Disturbing Images/Violence: Teen depression and attempted suicide.


I have heard both great things and terrible things about this book. As it turns out, it falls directly between the two for me. While I enjoyed reading it, I was disconnected from any kind of emotional feedback through the whole story. I didn't care what happened to Naomi. I hated both of her love interests, Ace and James. I hated her.

The writing style was very accessible and smooth, mimicking the voice of a teenage girl perfectly. Naomi's troubled seemed realistic enough, but her actions and emotions seemed false. She was pretty bipolar, moody, unfaithful with her feelings that it made keeping up with her rather difficult.

However, there were some good points to the story. Her past, her history, the amnesia--these things added depth and insight and made reading it not only bearable but acceptably interesting. While I was expecting the amnesia to be slightly more important, it certainly added to the book. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac turned out to be a charming modern-day love story with lots of quirks.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed this book, but I also had my issues with it. I think it was fairly well written, but I didnt like Naomi that much, but it was kind of nice not liking the protagonist. Ha. Great review! :)



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