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Forgotten – Cat Patrick

Forgotten – Cat PatrickTitle: Forgotten by Cat Patrick
Publishing Info: June 7, 2011 by Bloomsbury Publishing
Source: Library
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: October 20, 2013
Related Posts: Just Like Fate

    Each night at precisely 4:33 am, while sixteen-year-old London Lane is asleep, her memory of that day is erased. In the morning, all she can "remember" are events from her future. London is used to relying on reminder notes and a trusted friend to get through the day, but things get complicated when a new boy at school enters the picture. Luke Henry is not someone you'd easily forget, yet try as she might, London can't find him in her memories of things to come.
    When London starts experiencing disturbing flashbacks, or flash-forwards, as the case may be, she realizes it's time to learn about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.

 

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I had been meaning to read FORGOTTEN for a long time, and from its description, I was instantly curious. I love books that revolve around time travel, alternate universes, and messing with the human brain (internally, of course. Not like… lobotomies or anything. Sorry — back on track here…) so the fact that London’s memory reset at 4:33am each morning AND that she only had a memory of the future and not the past was entirely intriguing!

I’m not entirely sure why, but I assumed this was going to be some kind of paranormal/sci-fi thriller. You know me… I go in blind or nearly blind for many books because I love being surprised by everything so I had read the synopsis when I first added it to my TBR list, generally knew what it was about when I started it and… It was a bit different than I expected. I’m not saying it was in a bad way because I still really enjoyed the book, but it wasn’t as suspenseful and action-packed as I thought it was going to be. I had expected some kind of chase, maybe a government conspiracy — I’m so terrible and I create plots in my mind before I even read a book. It’s bad — But FORGOTTEN was definitely more of London’s personal struggle, an explanation of her current condition, and her own personal relationship struggles, specifically with her best friend Jamie, cute boy Luke, and her mom. There was a bit more action and suspense towards the end of the book, but it just didn’t happen quite soon enough.

I think the thing I was most impressed with was all of the logistics of how London’s memory worked. She only remembered the future so we only get to see things as London remembers them — whether that’s one day into the future or several years. London can remember a friend because they’re still friends in the future but she has to take notes about what she wore and ate and did the day before because once that day is gone and her memory resets, it’s all gone. This was a fantastic concept for a novel and it definitely drew me in!
I think the thing about the memory that I didn’t like was the explanation. It was explained, but it felt part science-based and part science-ficiton and the two just weren’t melding together for me. My brain couldn’t handle the plausible and the impossible rolled all into one. My main thought process? We find out the reason for London’s memory reset, which okay, I can totally understand and will absolutely buy into but ability to only remember the future? Fiction! (Well, of course it’s fiction, but my brain kept calling it out.) I feel like if there was a sci-fi reason for BOTH or a scientific explanation for BOTH, I might have felt better about it. To mix “fact” and fiction just never came together harmoniously for me.

Since London has no memory of the past, she’s constantly taking notes to help her relive each day and if it’s something important, she has to read that note each day. Cat Patrick did a great job at not making this repetitive because if you know me, you know how much I hate repetition in books. The only time it became a little too much was with Luke’s character. London had to “remeet” him so many times that the mention of his good looks and the “beautiful boy” just became tiresome and I got sick of hearing about how good looking he was. Luke wasn’t a vain character, but if he read the book, he would be bound to become one. Hang on to your hormones, London! Nah, but it really wasn’t that bad. It’s just my personal weakness for repetition and it just got under my skin a little.

FORGOTTEN has a great tangle of relationship issues that London needs to learn how to deal with, aside from just a romantic one. She has to figure out how to be in a relationship without even remembering the guy (which, ow. Not easy, right?), she has to work on keeping a good relationship with her mom no matter how hard things get, and she ends up in a fight with her best friend Jamie. I actually really enjoyed — okay, not enjoyed — but appreciated the relationship struggles because we saw so many aspects of London’s life. I was, however, bothered by the REASON that London and Jamie ended up in a fight. I understand it causing a rift, but to go on for weeks/months… Seemed a bit much. Then again, maybe Jamie’s a bit too much and that’s just her character! Could be true, but then that turns me off to that side of her character. Eh. Just a ‘meh’ snag in the plot for my personal tastes.

I really did enjoy FORGOTTEN but overall, I think I was expecting a bit more. Was it my expectations? Was it my actual opinion as I was reading? Was it a little bit the audio narration? Yes. All of these things were a factor, but I also think they all balanced each other out. After reflecting on it for a while, I think it was a good read but fell somewhere in the middle for me, still missing a couple of those elements that provide a good “wow” factor.

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London // Character Obsessions: Taking notes, her cell phone, a mysterious dream.
London and I didn’t quite get along as I had hoped but I think that was just due to her… condition. I’m not sure if it was the situation or the writing, but you know how I get with repetition and the fact that we always had to repeat London’s life over and over since she has no memory of the past wore on my nerves. Actually, Cat Patrick did this pretty well so we didn’t have to relive everything all the time… Just the constant fawning over Luke’s bodacious bod got a bit tiresome. Sigh. Teenage girls.
Luke // Character Obsessions: His family, London, original ideas.
I actually liked Luke a lot! I think sometimes his character lost a bit of believability because come on. What teenage boy is that super sweet? BUT he really does his best to make London feel special and it was what I always wanted when I was a teenager myself. Who am I to judge! Plus, he drives a minivan. Soft spot! (No, seriously. Reminds me of when I started dating Shane and we always drove around in his mom’s minivan haha.)

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Kept Me Hooked On: Messing with the mind. I loved the concept for this book. It was so interesting and there were definitely a lot of curious elements regarding London’s memory!
Left Me Wanting More: Action. I just wanted a bit more action, suspense, and mystery. There was a bit that came towards the end, but really not as much as I had hoped for. Probably my fault of assuming what kind of book it would be, but I really had high hopes for more tension!

Addiction Rating
Borrow it!

I actually had a hard time deciding how I really felt about this book. I enjoyed it but I think when it comes down to giving it a rating, I’d say it doesn’t need to be high up on your list, but if you come across it, it’s still a good read. I think my expectations may have been too high and I wanted more of a mystery/thriller aspect and much more suspense. I did enjoy the concept but it had a lot more contemporary/romance aspects than I anticipated and less of a “paranormal romance” feel.

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BOOKS LIKE FORGOTTEN

(Click the cover to see my review!)

         Unremembered              Falso Memory

Just Like Fate – Cat Patrick & Suzanne Young

Just Like Fate – Cat Patrick & Suzanne YoungTitle: Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick, Suzanne Young
Publishing Info: August 27, 2013 by Simon & Schuster
Source: BEA 2013
Genres: Alternate Reality, Contemporary, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: June 13, 2013
Related Posts: The Program (The Program #1)

    Caroline is at a crossroads. Her grandmother is sick, maybe dying. Like the rest of her family, Caroline's been at Gram's bedside since her stroke. With the pressure building, all Caroline wants to do is escape--both her family and the reality of Gram's failing health. So when Caroline's best friend offers to take her to a party one fateful Friday night, she must choose: stay by Gram's side, or go to the party and live her life.
The consequence of this one decision will split Caroline's fate into two separate paths--and she's about to live them both.
Friendships are tested and family drama hits an all-new high as Caroline attempts to rebuild old relationships, and even make a few new ones. If she stays, her longtime crush, Joel, might finally notice her, but if she goes, Chris, the charming college boy, might prove to be everything she's ever wanted.
Though there are two distinct ways for her fate to unfold, there is only one happy ending...

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JUST LIKE FATE was a really fun read for me! I pretty much love anything with alternate universes/co-existing realities so I was really excited to see exactly how this story plays out. Here’s the gist: Caroline’s grandmother just suffered a stroke and as it seems her clock is ticking down, Caroline devotes all her spare time to staying at her grandmother’s bedside. When her friend calls her to invite her to a party to help lighten her mood, JUST LIKE FATE splits into two possible story lines: Whether Caroline chooses to stay with her grandmother or go to the party.
I want to say before I start my full review, though, that don’t get confused: The only people aware of these two alternate paths are us, the readers. I’m actually not 100% sure how to categorize the book since the readers are just getting two different stories none of the characters, including Caroline, are aware of the split. I felt like it was mostly contemporary but the fact that there is a split brings in a tiny element of paranormal/sci-fi so I’d be interested to hear how you guys feel about that!

I won’t say TOO much about each story line, but I will say that each option presents Caroline with different reactions and relationship-altering situations from her family, an interesting new romance possibility, and friendships put to the test. I will say that I appreciated that the two paths were in fact very different with some minor things and of course people that overlapped. When the story first split, it was a tiny bit confusing to keep the two separated because they were so similar, but as Caroline digressed in two opposite directions, we end up with different situations and different settings so things quickly solidify into separate stories.

One thing we definitely see about Caroline as reiterated by her family and friend is that she’s a runner. No, not like a track star, but she has a tendency to run and hide from her problems. Caroline seems to be running unconsciously so naturally it’s shocking and painful when that’s brought to her attention and I really think this is the way we see her grow the most. I actually liked seeing a blatantly obvious character flaw in Caroline. It was kind of nice to be shown that issue right off the bat and constantly witness Caroline’s progress with addressing conflict and standing up for herself. I think it made me that much more proud of her when I saw her making strong choices near the end of the book!

So the boys. There are two boys in this book. Firstly there’s Joel who is Caroline’s long-time crush. His relationship with Caroline is dominant in the “Stay” part of the book. Obviously we’ll all make our own opinions of Joel but I was always a bit… wary. And I think the authors made me feel that way for a certain reason. It’s all cryptic now, but of course I don’t want to give away any major spoilers! The other love interest is the new guy Chris who dominates the “Go” part of the book. Chris is a cute guy who Caroline meets at the party and he is my kind of crush! He’s snarky but sweet and you know I love that banter and joke-flirting. Personally, I was rooting for the Chris story to work out… But….

JUST LIKE FATE is written so well because each path has some serious upsides and some MAJOR issues that Caroline will have to deal with in either path she chooses, so of course the whole time I’m wondering, “Which path does Caroline actually choose and how does this story end!?!?!” I was totally itching to know at the very end. So which one does she pick? Of course I’m not revealing that answer BUT I will say that I think the end was done perfectly. Cat Patrick and Suzanne Young did a great job of closing the story in the only possible way they could have and it was a good surprise!

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Caroline // Character Obsessions: Her grandmother, Electric Freakshow, Joel.
As mentioned earlier, I really liked seeing her flaws. I think that really helped me see several different aspects of her character without having to dig for them and it was that much easier to see her grow. I actually really identified with Caroline a lot. I wouldn’t say our lives are similar but I tend to avoid conflict situations so I totally understood her behavior. I really sympathized with her a lot!
Natalie // Character Obsessions: Her family, pointing out Caroline’s flaws.
Natalie is Caroline’s older sister and I feel compelled to talk about her. I was actually gonna go into listing the boys next, but Natalie just stuck out in my head and I needed to address her character. In the very beginning, we see that Natalie and Caroline do not get along. AT ALL. But I could see that so much of Natalie’s anger extended from the hurt that Caroline unknowingly caused. I really felt for Natalie and I really liked seeing so many sides of HER in these two paths. We actually get to see the many different faces of Natalie and I really liked seeing that she was just Caroline’s mean, cold-hearted older sister.
Joel // Character Obsessions: Electric Freakshow, making out, girls.
Joel is Caroline’s long-time crush and plays a big role in JUST LIKE FATE. I gotta say… I got some not-so-good vibes from this guy right off the bat. It made it REALLY hard to like him but we come to learn that there may be more to this guy than Caroline originally knows. Again, not wanting to give away any spoilers, I’ll stop there!
Chris // Character Obsessions: Music, jokes, Caroline.
Ohhh, I loved Chris. Of course he’s not without his flaws and Caroline still picks up some questionable vibes from him here and there but he was the guy that was so easy to like! He was funny, smart, a musician, confident… Everything I love to crush on in books! Of course, all of those things attract a LOT of girls soooo. You can see where Caroline might have some issues!
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Kept Me Hooked On: Parallel Universes. I definitely need to read more of these kinds of books (I’ve read Pivot Point, have Tandem, and want to read Parallel) because I just love the concept!
Left Me Wanting More: Responsibility. Caroline seemed really… immature at times. Chalk that up to being a teenager, but I wanted her to show a bit more maturity (which I guess she did towards the end), but sometimes her decisions left a bad taste in my mouth.

Addiction Rating
RECOMMEND IT.

This was an enjoyable read for me but I’m somewhat on the fence whether I’d say buy it or not… I would, however, definitely recommend it to others!

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BOOKS LIKE JUST LIKE FATE     

Pivot Point      Time Between Us