08 May 2012

Today's Imprint Read: My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares

If you had the ability to remember all your past lives—millennia of deaths, lives, tragedies, and joys—would you consider it a blessing or a burden? Daniel is one such person, and throughout all his hundreds of lives, there has been one constant: Sophia and the irresistible love he feels for her. Each reincarnation, Daniel can't shake the hope that this time their love will bloom and grow with them into old age.

I've never had a child, and I've never gotten old. I don't know why. I have seen beauty in countless things. I have fallen in love, and she is the one who endures. I killed her once and died for her many times and I still have nothing to show for it. I always search for her; I always remember her. I carry the hope that someday she will remember me. (p. 2)
My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares (Penguin USA / Riverhead Books, 2010; quote is from uncorrected proofs and may differ in the published edition)

Quick Facts
  • Setting: Virginia (modern times); all over the world (in the past)
  • Circumstances: Daniel remembers his past lives but Sophia doesn't; mystery of why their relationship is always cut short through death
  • Characters: Daniel and Sophia/Lucy, who meet as high school seniors
  • Main themes: love, reincarnation, living in the moment, what it means to have a fulfilled life, choice/fate, relationships
  • Genres: reincarnation, historical/contemporary fiction mix, romance (not bodice-ripper)
  • Publication date: June 2010 (hardcover); June 2011 (paperback)
  • Why author sounds familiar: she also wrote the young adult Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series
  • Miscellaneous: Indie Next pick for June 2010; first in a planned trilogy
The following video was made by BookList in 2009, but it gives you a feel for Ann Brashares:

Want to Know More? Author Ann Brashshares spoke with a CBS morning show about My Name Is Memory, becoming an author, and the transition from young adult books to adult fiction; another interview was posted on the blog Today's Adventure. For more about Brashares, visit her website, follow her on Twitter, and like her Facebook page. The publisher's website offers an excerpt, information about the different media and editions, and a reading group guide. For more Riverhead Books and for news about events and great books, like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.


Allison 5/8/12, 7:48 AM  

Wow. Wow. This is the first time I've heard of the book, although I am quite familiar with the author. I went and looked it up after reading your blog entry and I am surprised that it's been out for a few years! I need to go get it!

Nise' 5/8/12, 8:03 AM  

I could not get into this one when it first came out. I might try again.

bermudaonion 5/8/12, 8:59 AM  

That sounds like another winner from Riverhead!

Amie@Mom Reads My Books! 5/8/12, 9:17 AM  

Hmmm, looks interesting! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Laurel-Rain Snow 5/8/12, 9:22 AM  

I am curious now....this one does sound very tempting.


Beth Hoffman 5/8/12, 10:00 AM  

I so enjoyed the video and will have to check out this book!

Julie 5/8/12, 10:15 AM  

I am waiting for the next one in the series. I had never read Ann Brashshares before this one. I really enjoyed it.

Heather 5/8/12, 10:55 AM  

I have heard a lot about this book, but have not yet read it. I admit to being a bit reluctant as, when this first came out I had just finished a Kay Hooper with a similar premise (hero remembers past lives; female does not). Thanks for visiting my teaser!

Linda 5/8/12, 11:41 AM  

One of my favorite reads last year. I'm anxious for the sequel.

Jessica ( frellathon ) 5/8/12, 12:13 PM  

And this just went on my TBR list

Leslie (Under My Apple Tree) 5/8/12, 1:03 PM  

I read this when it came out and enjoyed it a lot.

However.... the ending leaves the reader seriously hanging! And there is no sequel in sight. I read (somewhere out there in the ethernet) that sales weren't high enough to warrant a second book. Is there any truth to that? If it is true, I'm very disappointed.

Beth F 5/8/12, 1:06 PM  

Leslie: I fear you may be right. Further research says no second book in sight. We can always hope. :)

Leslie (Under My Apple Tree) 5/8/12, 2:48 PM  

Awwww, bummer. I hate when that happens.

Zibilee 5/8/12, 3:23 PM  

Wow, that was a powerful quote. I never gave this book a second look when it came out, but now it seems I must take a second look! Great teaser today!

Shelley Munro 5/8/12, 3:44 PM  

It sounds as if it has the potential for a wonderful love story. Thanks for stopping by my teaser.

Carole 5/8/12, 5:11 PM  

Hi Beth. I was wondering whether you would be happy to put up a link in my brand new monthly series called “Books You Love”. The idea is for people to link up posts about a book they loved – it doesn’t have to be one they just posted about. It could be an old fave. I am hoping we will end up with a nice collection of books that can go on our reading lists. Here is the link Books You Loved May Edition

Julie P. 5/8/12, 6:45 PM  

The first in a trilogy? I better get started.

caite 5/8/12, 6:53 PM  

not sure I can buy on to the whole past lives thing..especially for three books. not really my thing perhaps..

Alice Audrey 5/8/12, 7:00 PM  

It's an intriguing premise. Heart breaking, though.

Bookzilla 5/8/12, 11:23 PM  

I love that you added some quick facts about the book -- it makes it easy for someone who hasn't read My Name is Memory to get a snapshot of the story.

I read this one sometime last year, and was kind of underwhelmed. Glad to see it's part of a series, though. The ending was decidedly "meh."

Check out my teaser from The Seer and the Sword!

Karen White 5/9/12, 10:00 AM  

Read this book last year. Didn't LOVE it but really liked it. I think, like others, there was something unsatisfying, but her whole exploration of memory and different times and places was compelling.

Rachel 5/10/12, 5:53 PM  

I read this when it first came out and loved it. I hope there is a sequel in the works!

Thanks for stopping by. I read all comments and may respond here, via e-mail, or on your blog. I visit everyone who comments, but not necessarily right away.

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