Friday, 31 May 2013

Remembrance by Michelle Madow

by Michelle Madow

Summary: Lizzie Davenport has been reincarnated from Regency Era, England ... but she doesn't know it yet.

Then Drew Carmichael transfers into Lizzie's high school at the beginning of the year, and she feels a connection to him, almost like she knows him. She can't stop thinking about him, but whenever she tries talking with him about the mysteries behind her feelings, he makes it clear that he wants nothing to do with her. Reaching him is even more difficult because she has a boyfriend, Jeremy, who has started to become full of himself after being elected co-captain of the varsity soccer team, and her flirtatious best friend Chelsea starts dating Drew soon after his arrival. So why can't she get him out of her mind?

Even though Lizzie knows she should let go of her fascination with Drew, fighting fate isn't going to be easy.
So this is the first book I've read as part of the whole TBR jar challenge thing, and I'm glad I read it. I did like the book, but just a warning in advance: this review probably will seem mostly negative. I'll try and keep the negatives short as possible (but I normally suck at the whole short and to the point thing, so...).

I did not like the characters. Any of them (well, except for Keelie--I think that was her name--but she wasn't in it enough to annoy me much). None of them had much depth, all of them made the most stupid decisions and just seemed so...flat, like cardboard cutout characters instead of believable people.

The romance aspect of it sparked the discussion post I wrote yesterday, so I won't go into that specific part of it and instead I'll focus on the other issues I had with the romance:

All they seemed to talk about was how they felt about each other but we never really see why they feel that way about each other. It was very, very insta-love. Now, with stories about reincarnation, insta-love can work but even their past selves seemed to be a case of insta-love so I just wasn't buying it. The only reason I wanted them to be together was because that's what we're told to want, not because they were actually a good couple (and also because her current boyfriend was a total ass).

Words like love and friendship were thrown around all the time without it ever really being shown (I think there was only one scene where I felt Lizzie came across as being a good friend). There was so much tell going on and virtually no show.

We're told that two people are together, but never shown why they are together, we're told that two people are best friends but their actions don't really reflect that unless we're supposed to view it as a crappy friendship (I don't think we are), we're told two characters are meant to be together but never actually shown why--beyond the whole destiny nonsense--and yet we're shown a lot of good reasons why they shouldn't be.

The constant references to Jane Austen drove me nuts. I wouldn't mind a few here and there, if the character is a fan of the novels, but it was a bit over the top in this--going as far as having the characters use Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett as an analogy for their own relationship during serious conversations which was just kfjvldfkbgvklbv. 

There were a few other little things that bugged me (like Drew being insanely rich--which isn't so much a flaw with the book, it was just something I don't particularly like when it's done the way it was done in this book. It's the same as Edward in Twilight or Christian in Fifty Shades of Gray, where their wealth is used as if it's supposed to make them be more appealing love interests) but yeah...I'll stop there.

I told you the review would seem mostly negative, but that's because there was a lot that I didn't like about the book even though I did actually enjoy reading the book itself...if that makes sense? It's kind of like watching reality TV and you know it's not that great and the flaws in it are like big neon signs and yet you watch it anyway because it keeps you entertained and you still want to see how it all plays out.

I liked the book because it kept me hooked from start to finish, even when there were things I didn't like or things had me rolling my eyes or made me want to scream at the characters for being mind numbingly idiotic, I still wanted to keep reading, so it was clearly doing something right.

It might not linger with me or have a whole lot of depth to it, but it kept me from being bored for a while and I liked reading it. I'd rate it 3 stars out of 5. Apparently there's sequels too, I'm not sure if I want to read those--on one hand, it sounds like they might be better than this was, but at the same time I'm not sure it's worth the effort and this did work as a standalone anyway.


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