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Memento Nora by Angie Smibert

Image of Memento Nora
How many times have you thought, “Wow, I wish I could forget that horrible break-up/time I got fired/being hit in the face?”

In the future dystopia of Memento Nora , there’s a solution, which is going to a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic and taking a pill that blocks out your traumatic memory. I was prepared to be underwhelmed when starting this book, having felt like YA books about a post-apocalyptic or dystopian universe are the new vampires.

Luckily, first-time author Angie Smibert has managed to create an original vision with a fast-moving plot and solid characters (I read it in an evening). After witnessing an explosion that ends with a dead body at her feet, heroine Nora is on her first trip to a TFC. Before she sees the doctor, she sees a boy, Micah, spitting out a pill and pointing to the word “Memento” on his cast as he leaves. There’s nothing like a little teenage rebellion to spark an attraction, and soon the Micah, Nora, and their friend Winter are publishing an underground publication called Memento, determined to remind people that some things are best not forgotten.

Smibert never condescends to her readers, as there are big questions about corporate culture, greed, terrorism and memory. Even more subtle is the theme of what it means to be a parent – like many great heroines of young adult literature, Nora is more together than her mother. This would be a great choice for a mother-daughter book club, and I’m planning on passing it along to Stephanie the librarian. I'm hoping this will be one of those "word of mouth" books and looking forward to the sequel.

Recommended for fans of the Hunger Games, Ray Bradbury or anyone looking for an original and quick YA book.