The Memory Book by Lara Avery


The Memory Book

by Lara Avery

Available now from Poppy



They tell me that my memory will never be the same, that I’ll start forgetting things. At first just a little, and then a lot. So I’m writing to remember.

Sammie was always a girl with a plan: graduate at the top of her class and get out of her small town as soon as humanly possible. Nothing will stand in her way–not even a rare genetic disorder the doctors say will slowly start to steal her memories and then her health. What she needs is a new plan.

So the Memory Book is born: Sammie’s notes to her future self, a document of moments great and small. It’s where she’ll record every perfect detail of her first date with longtime crush, Stuart–a brilliant young writer who is home for the summer. And where she’ll admit how much she’s missed her childhood best friend, Cooper, and even take some of the blame for the fight that ended their friendship.

Through a mix of heartfelt journal entries, mementos, and guest posts from friends and family, readers will fall in love with Sammie, a brave and remarkable girl who learns to live and love life fully, even though it’s not the life she planned.

*I received a copy of this book from Poppy in exchange for my honest review.

Sometimes a book comes along and you need everyone to know how spectacular it is. The Memory Book will take you on an awesome, gut-wrenching, emotional rollercoaster. I loved this book from page one. Let’s dissect.

Samantha is your average teenage girl. Sort of. She’s ridiculously smart, on track to be the valedictorian of her high school, and she’s full of wit and snark. It didn’t hurt that she referenced Lord of the Rings like a champ, too. Sam felt real to me, as tangible as the keyboard beneath my fingers. And when the details of her Niemann-Pick disease came out…well, let’s just say that you know right away how this story will end. NPC is ALWAYS fatal, and the author doesn’t shy away from the ugliness of it. So, I cried when Sam struggled, I celebrated when she triumphed. I perused the “Feels Department” and sampled everything they had to offer.

Now, before you think this is a sad book about sick teenager, I should warn you: It is. But it’s also a story about love and life and family and sacrifice and being a teenager in a vastly unfair world. And it made me laugh. A lot. (It also made me cry…a lot.)

The romance in this book is beautiful. There is a love triangle, but I promise you it’s great and realistic and will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy.

Stuart and Cooper (the love interests) are both entertaining in their own right. Stuart is a smartypants like Sam, a writer trying to make it big in NYC. He’s well read, and Sam loves that. Cooper is the “boy next door” type. He’s a little country, but his heart is in the right place. He and Sam grew up together as neighbors. The way the three of them come together and ignite is some amazing writing.

The best part of The Memory Book? It’s written as Sam’s journal. I think the immediacy of her words pushes the novel to the next level. The reader experiences Sam’s decline as her disease steals her life. But, readers will also experience her joy, her revelations, and every bit of her humor.

If you love John Green, Shannon Lee Alexander, or you read those heartbreaking Lurlene McDaniel books as a kid, you will fall in love with The Memory Book.

Can I give it more than 5 stars?


  • Buy this book now.
  • Remember the tissues.
  • Experience every documented emotion known to man.



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