Friday, May 8, 2009

Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella

389 pages
Copyright 2008
The Dial Press, a division of Random House, Inc.
New York, New York

I read the entire Shopaholic series by Sophie Kinsella in early 2008 and had a love-hate relationship with them. I loved the comical aspects of the stories and the light fluff that made them easy reading... but I hated the stressful situations that occurred in each novel, they stressed me out until everything was resolved and I was assured of a happy ending. And yet, I read on until I finished the series. At some point I realized they were a guilty pleasure for me, some "snack reading" in between meatier books and classics. So, since I've finished the series and it's been a while since I've read some modern chick-lit I thought I'd give one of Kinsella's stand-alone books a try.

Remember Me? is about a young working class British gal who wakes up in the hospital with amnesia. All Lexi Smart can remember is what happened to her three years previous to her accident. To her it feels as though she's lost three years of her life... But maybe it isn't so bad after all. Lexi finds her "new" life a dream come true -- she's got the body of a brunette barbie doll, a high paying job, and lives in a millionaire flat with her very sweet and absolutely gorgeous husband. Everything is almost perfect and once she regains her memory it will be perfect... But then Lexi learns things aren't what they seem... But why? How did she become who she is? If only she could remember!

Remember Me? is a romance with drama typical of British chick-lit (i.e. Bridget Jones Diary). What does that mean? It means Remember Me? has its funny moments mixed in with some difficult situations, but overall remains a light read with a happy ending. Personally I found myself struggling with some of situations included in the book, particularly those involving Lexi and her friend's morals. Their worldview is different than mine thus I did not connect with the characters as I might in other books. To add to this the book had a fair amount of language (including the "f-word", which is really common in modern British literature and films) and some bedroom scenes/discussions (both intramarital and extramarital) that readers may wish to skip over (or maybe skip the book altogether). Despite all these negative aspects I still wanted to finish the story. It has such a clever plot. Seriously, what would you do if you woke up and found you weren't who you thought you were, or that you didn't have the same friends and that your spouse was a complete stranger? It is definitely compelling and got me thinking.

On a scale of 1-5, 1 being horrible and 5 being excellent I would rate Remember Me? a 2-2.5. It's not that I hated it, because I didn't... I just can't say that I loved it, there was too much in the way for me to connect with the characters, especially the heroine..

If you're looking for a good clean story involving a married couple, one of which has amnesia and can't remember anything you should check out the 1940 film I Love You Again. (Netflix anyone?) And if you aren't terrible concerned with mild language and implied love scenes you might be interested in the Harrison Ford film, Regarding Henry. Either of these I think were better at telling the story than Kinsella did in Remember Me? Harsh? I don't mean to be, but well, there you have it.

I do plan to give Kinsella another try at some point in the future. She is one of those writers that makes for a good brain break -- a beach book -- or a time-killer for some. Borrow don't buy this one if you wish to read it.


Laura said...

I read this because I thought it would be similar to another of her stand-alone novels: Can You Keep a Secret? It wasn't as funny. Still, I enjoyed it enough not to regret reading it.

And I agree about the Shopaholic series. I couldn't read any more after the first one because I found what she did too stressful - I'm NOT a shopper!

Alyce said...

I haven't been able to get into the Shopaholic series. I thought Remember Me? was a fun light read, but I agree with Laura that Can You Keep a Secret was much better.

Allison said...

I heart Sophie Kinsella books, and my favorite by far is The Undomestic Goddess.