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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Book Review: and she was

by Alison Gaylin

On a summer afternoon in 1998, six-year-old Iris Neff walked away from a barbecue in her small suburban town . . . and vanished.

Missing persons investigator Brenna Spector has a rare neurological disorder that enables her to recall every detail of every day of her life. A blessing and a curse, it began in childhood, when her older sister stepped into a strange car never to be seen again, and it’s proven invaluable in her work. But it hasn’t helped her solve the mystery that haunts her above all others - and it didn’t lead her to little Iris. When a local woman, Carol Wentz, disappears eleven years later, Brenna uncovers bizarre connections between the missing woman, the long-gone little girl . . . and herself. (book blurb)


My Thoughts:
The book blurb reminded me of the TV show Unforgettable, where Detective Carrie Wells remembers everything she sees. In fact, that's one of the reasons I wanted to read this one! Brenna Spector is a little like Carrie, only her memories don't seem to be as controlled and she can sometimes drift away into the past. While fascinating, this ability also sounds like an incredible burden. Some things are better left to hazy recollections, softened by time.

Brenna is an investigator who specializes in missing persons. While I kept comparing her to Carrie Wells at first, she soon became her own person. She seemed more vulnerable than Carrie, maybe because she had less control over her memory? While reading, I wasn't sure if I liked Brenna or not, but wound up liking her by the end and wanting to learn more about her and her life!

The mystery itself is rather strange. Carol Wentz blames herself for the disappearance of a little girl eleven years ago and has been obsessing about it ever since. That didn't ring true for me, as it wasn't really Carol's fault and I didn't believe that she would do some of the things she did. Then Carol disappears, and her wallet is found in the missing girl's old house. Curiouser and curiouser....

Found myself more interested in Brenna, her struggles with living with her Super Memory, and how it affected both her personal and professional life than in Carol's disappearance. I didn't really like Carol, Carol's husband, or any of the other characters involved in the disappearance and just wanted to get back to Brenna. Because of that, I gave this one a 3/5 as while I liked it, the main plot kept getting in the way! Really liked the main character, but didn't care about the mystery. Does that make sense?


ARC received via the Amazon Vine Program

8 comments:

  1. A shame about the characters, a book I liked the sound of up until then, now I'm not convinced I would.

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    1. Brenna was a great character, it was just some of the others I didn't care all that much for....

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  2. Hmm...curious read for certain. Imagine...remembering EVERY little detail about EVERY day. I can't decide if that would be awesome or simply bothersome? *ponders* Great review, thanks for sharing!

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    1. Might be awesome if you could control it, but think it would be scary to have no control. Would be kind of awesome in a fight though....*L*

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  3. Perfect sense. I've felt that way about a lot of books. This one sounds good and the TV show does too but I never got into it. Too many other shows. :(

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    1. You're right, there are an awful lot of shows out there this season! I'm about 5 episodes behind with this one! :o

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  4. Sounds like an interesting story. Sorry you didn't care much for the characters. Thank you for the review.

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    1. Think this is the first time where I really liked the MC but wasn't that interested in the plot or secondary characters. Strange, but interesting!

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