remember me gone arc review // a paranormal thriller ft. a memory conspiracy

I keep requesting 2022 arcs on NetGalley and now I have to read them to keep my ratio up. I can’t stop laughing at myself.

Thank you to Penguin Teen for an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review! Quotes come from an unfinished copy and may not appear in final product.

rep: Hispanic side character

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

If you asked me what my top 3 comfort genres are, paranormal thrillers wouldn’t make the list. I don’t even know if they’d grace the top 10. However, Remember Me Gone makes me want to read more of them. It’s a thought-provoking, twisty story with a Southern drawl.

We follow a girl named Lucy Miller whose family has been taking away bad memories for generations. Guilt, regret, sorrow…they can all be taken away. While preparing to continue on the Miller tradition, Lucy sees a memory of her dead mother in her father’s mind that’s tinged with guilt. If that’s not enough, that night she stumbles across something at the local mines. The next morning, she wakes up with no memory of it and a bruise on her leg. As mysteries begin to ramp up in her little Southern hometown, Lucy must team up with a boy named Marco who also has gaps in his memory to figure out just what’s going on, and how many secrets have been taken from them.

This book was a trip. As Lucy uncovers more about her town, she also discovers more about her own past that was stolen from her. And I didn’t really expect most of it. While the plot of this story was vastly unpredictable and twisty, I think the real strength of it lies in the concept. Even if we feel grief over a memory, do we really want it taken away? By taking away memories, how much is a person’s true identity lost? Remember Me Gone tackles such a complex, deep idea with incredible ease. Stokes is truly a talented writer, and someone to watch out for in the future.

“Maybe we need our burdens so we don’t keep repeating the same mistakes again. Maybe we need to let our wounds heal, rather than trying to pretend they never existed in the first place.”

This is such a Southern book too! I regret reading it in December because I think that the atmosphere is much better suited for spring or summer. But since when am I known for reading on-season anyways? I know a lot of people might think the romance is insta-lovey. But the quirks of this book make it work. I won’t explain because spoilers but it isn’t really insta-love in my opinion. Also, I cried at the ending and if a book can make me do that, it wins some sort of trophy*.

*although that dreaded book called the game did make me cry of frustration so who knows where i stand on crying anymore

So that’s it! Remember Me Gone comes out March 8th! You can add it to Goodreads, Storygraph, or preorder it!

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