author, book, book reviews, books, characters, fiction, Genesis Lee, memories, Mystery, novel, read, reader, review, romance, sci-fi, science fiction, Shallee McArthur, The Unhappening of Genesis Lee, writer, YA, young adult
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Mystery
Point of View: First (Gena)
Released: November 18, 2014
Predictability: 2 out of 5 (Where 1 is George RR Martin (If the characters make a plan or think about the future I know it isn’t going to go that way.) And 5 is Cinder (where I guessed what was going to happen long before it did, but it was still a great book.)
My Rating: 7/10 Stars
In a world where people wear their memories in beads, someone is stealing them.
(Yep, that’s it one sentence tells you all you need to know. Sound good?)
The Mementi (people with memories in beads called links) founded the city of Havendale so they would have a place to belong, since they are ostracized in the outside world. However, in Havendale the Populous (what the Mementi call normal people) are only able to have menial labor jobs and are looked down upon.
The company of Archon was founded to use the Mementi’s intellect and skills to make the world better for them through the creation of new technologies. Since every Mementi has stock in Archon, they all have plenty of money, where all of the Populous in the city are poor.
Okay, a little more summary:
Genesis Lee is a Mementi living in Havendale. She’s trying to discover who’s behind the Link thefts when she runs into Kalan, a populous boy who may be the only one who can help her.
Some would consider this a dystopian, and though the city of Havendale has a dystopian feel to it the plot is really more mystery.
At first glance this book has a really strange cover, but after reading it, it totally makes sense, (Gena is in ballet and dreams of being an astronaut.) and one of the themes of this book is about her being who she really is instead of who her parents want her to be.
The Mementi had a cool culture, they’re always polite (because no one wants someone to have a bad memory of them) and they wear lots of covering clothing since one touch with another Mementi can transfer memories. Thought really went into what it would be like for those who could never forget. I like the whole Mementi can absorb knowledge into their brains thing. (Reminded me of the Matrix.)
The history behind what created the Mementi made sense, so often in a book like this the author has a cool concept, but the explanation of how this world came to be is lacking.
The romance was sweet, no instant romance here, it was gradual and well done. I liked both of the main characters, especially Gena. She got so strong over the course of this novel. The minor characters were well done too, but this novel was mostly about Gena and Kalan.
This book was surprisingly deep at times when talking about what memories one would want to forget and keeping all of your memories to deal with them properly.
There were several twists and I didn’t guess any of them except the last one, so it was a good little mystery. Unhappening had a good ending too, (I’m not saying happily ever after or not, since most of you know I’m a fan of that and I wouldn’t want spoilers.) I mean that everything was wrapped up. I don’t know if this will be a series, but if it’s not I’m happy with that.
The Not As Good: (Since none of these things are really bad)
There are a couple of little editing mistakes, like when they were listing off names one was mentioned twice as though the first time hadn’t happened, and there’s a little annoying thing that happens to contradict what was already said in the end, but that could’ve just been the character’s doing. Neither of these things took away from the book though and this was an arc.
One of Gena’s friends has conveniently hacked almost every system in the city. I wish it had been Gena with this ability and a little more explanation was given, but the hacking wasn’t just used as an easy get out of jail free card.
In the middle of the book there are lots of Christian beliefs talked about, the love interest Kalan is Christian. Sometimes this can get a little preachy, but it was okay here, just another part to a character not the author trying to convince the readers of his/her beliefs.
I didn’t ‘feel’ her panic attacks, but it was a fine attempt. I was afraid she was going to go with the PTSD is cured instantly thing, but she didn’t, so kudos!
The Bad: Gena insulted fedoras. Fedoras are cool! (Now I sound like the 11th doctor, but still.)
Would I recommend this book? Yes! Would I read something else by this author? Yep.
Would you want to remember everything? I would! I have a good memory already (one of those I have to pretend not to remember all of the things I do, because otherwise people would think I’m weird-er.) but I’m always forgetting little things, like what I walked in the room for or what I wanted to get at the store, (or most importantly story ideas) I realize remembering everything means the bad things too, but the worst memories are imprinted into my brain anyway. And the best part would be never having to worry I’d forget a story someone told me. (Though it would make rereading books harder)