I’d heard a lot of hype about The One Memory of Flora Banks so I jumped at the chance to get an early copy.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Flora Banks has no short-term memory. Her mind resets itself several times a day, and has since the age of ten, when the tumor that was removed from Flora’s brain took with it her ability to make new memories. That is, until she kisses Drake, her best friend’s boyfriend, the night before he leaves town. Miraculously, this one memory breaks through Flora’s fractured mind, and sticks. Flora is convinced that Drake is responsible for restoring her memory and making her whole again. So when an encouraging email from Drake suggests she meet him on the other side of the world, Flora knows with certainty that this is the first step toward reclaiming her life.
With little more than the words “be brave” inked into her skin, and written reminders of who she is and why her memory is so limited, Flora sets off on an impossible journey to Svalbard, Norway, the land of the midnight sun, determined to find Drake. But from the moment she arrives in the arctic, nothing is quite as it seems, and Flora must “be brave” if she is ever to learn the truth about herself, and to make it safely home.
I loved the concept of this book and was intrigued as to how the author would manage having a narrator with amnesia. Although it felt repetitive at times, it was a really effective stream of consciousness and I really felt Flora’s confusion and frustration.
I flew through the first and last quarter of the book. The pacing became really slow in the middle and I didn’t particularly enjoy the Arctic setting. There were far too many descriptions of the environment that I didn’t really care about – I just wanted to find out what was going on with Flora!
The last part of the book made up for that though and I felt like it really pulled the storyline together. Flora’s adventure was fun but I wish there had been more focus on her true backstory and what happens afterwards. Although I only gave this book three stars because of that, I definitely wouldn’t say no to a sequel so we can get to know Flora better!
Thank you to Netgalley and Penguin Random House UK for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.