Before I Go To Sleep
So...my book club is back up and running. Yay!! I have so missed having some girlfriends over and discussing books, and whatever else is going on in our lives. This will be my first get-together with this group, and I have high hopes for some good talk. Not to mention a chance to have a few drinks and not feel like a solitary alcoholic, making vodka and cokes to drink all by myself ;)
If you're reading this, and plan on coming over on Thursday night...you might want to stop reading now!! Just walk away from the computer screen, we don't want to spoil all the fun. But if you don't happen to be one of my neighbors, feel free to see what I thought of the book Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson.
Okay...so Christine has amnesia. It's a special kind of amnesia, brought on by a traumatic incident the likes of which are slightly shady. Every morning she wakes up and has no idea where she is, how old she is, and who the man is laying next to her in bed. Every day she has to be told what year it is, how much her husband loves her, etc. But then she meets with a doctor who wants to help her regain her memories. He tells her to keep a journal, and every morning he calls and tells her where it is...and to keep it from her husband. So...what happened to Christine? And will she ever regain any of her memory?? Tada...Before I Go To Sleep, in a nutshell.
I gave this a solid 3 stars on Goodreads...on a good day I may have rounded it up to 4, but today is not a good day.
I won't get into the science of this book, because clearly I'm not a neurologist or a specialist in brains and amnesia. But I found her particular kind of amnesia to be a bit far fetched. Not only does she not make new memories, but she has also lost most of her old memories. And she conveniently remembers things after naps...but not after going to sleep for the night. I had a hard time buying this, and at one point was expecting to learn she was being drugged on a daily basis.
And then there's the constant rehashing of her days via her journal. To me it got a bit old after awhile. Yes, we have to hear about things again because it's perpetually the first time Christine has read them, but it can make for slightly boring reading material. I just kept waiting for it to get more interesting. At one point I was tempted to just put the movie on and see whether they got the anticipation down a bit better than the book. That doesn't sound good coming from a book blogger does it?
There's a twist...which makes sense because the genre is "Thriller". I try very hard not to put spoilers on the blog because I don't want to keep someone from picking up a book themselves, so we'll just say that I found a lot of what brought about "The Twist" to be unrealistic. I guess I was just having trouble suspending my brain during this one.
But the writing was good...and it certainly could've been a much worse book. I guess I was just waiting for a little more excitement...a little more shock during the big reveal.
I think we'll have some good discussion about this book though. I'd like to pick the girls brains on friendship, marriage, parenthood...and how much memories can make or break a person. I really just want all of my dear friends to know that if the events of this book happened to them in real life, I would NOT act like Christine's friend Claire. There...I said it.
I think I just had the movie Memento in my head while reading this...and 50 First Dates. I kept expecting either extremely crazy memory manipulation or goofiness. And the build up just wasn't enough, in my opinion.
So...clearly I need someone to recommend to me a really GOOD thriller, as I didn't like this a ton or the previous one I read. Maybe I have unreachable expectations...
For this book I'd suggest a few really strong Long Island Iced Tea's. Drink a few of them and you won't remember what happened today either...
If I'm too sassy in this review, I blame the chest cold I have going on!! Let me know what you think either in the comments here or over on my Facebook page.