[728]: The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr

The One Memory of Flora Banks
by Emily Barr
Publication Date: January 12th, 2017
Stand Alone
Rating: 2 out of 5 Stars

This book was repetitive af. But then again, that was the point. I suppose it only makes sense when you have a character who goes through a memory reset of sorts as soon as she falls asleep. And such is the state of Flora Banks’ life.

It’s odd, disconcerting, and sad as hell. I actually felt bad for Flora. It’s tough navigating through life without a memory of what happened the day before. So she writes these little reminders for herself. Also, with her memory as frail as it is, what kind of parents would leave her alone?! I mean, I get that they have another child that was in a perilous medical emergency but come on. Leaving her in the care of another teen is simply irresponsible. Especially when Flora ended up being alone for the duration of their being away due to some unforeseen events.

So her brain doesn’t have a great memory bank to begin with. Anything she does the day before she forgets. But when she kisses this boy, the memory stuck. What does our Flora do? She goes off on her own to find this boy (who, by the way was her bff’s boyfriend) in the Arctic, no less! The freaking ARCTIC, yo. As a mom, I was terrified for her. The lengths she went through to find this boy was just insanity. I also get that this lone memory of her kissing the boy was sort of an anchor she held on to, but grrrl. GRRRL. Seriously. Who does that?! I cannot with this girl.

Back to the repetitive nature of this book, it was really a great representation of her brain disorder. She’s like, Dory, ya know? So she reads this notebook of her life that her mom wrote for her every morning so she’ll remember who she is. But still. It got tiresome so fast that I started skimming as soon as she starts rehashing her life like a Groundhog Day that never ends. Flora also has this uncanny child-like voice. Since she hasn’t been able to hold a memory since she was 10 years old, her describing what went on between her and the boy left me feeling a little strange.

In the end, the book didn’t do it for me. I vacillated between horrification at her parents who left her alone, and strange wonder at a girl who was brave enough to go after the one thing that made her feel “normal” for once.

  • I know this review is old but its been a while since i checked my feed and I saw this and remembered how fucking awful this book was! It was one ridiculous thing after another.

  • Ah, I see what you mean about the repetitive nature of things. With a subject matter like that for a book, with her unable to remember the days before, you really have to be careful with how you construct the novel in a way that eliminates those repetitive parts and keeps the story going for the reader :/ Also, THE ARCTIC?? As a 100% summer baby and a hater of feeling cold in the slightest, I don’t think I could go for that xD

  • This book didn’t work for me either, which is why I ended up DNFing it wayyyyy earlier. Like maybe 50 pages in, not even. But wait, she goes to the Arctic? What?

  • That’s so true, as a parent for you it sounds like you couldn’t fathom the thought of that in the book! Also how the fuck does she end up in the Arctic? Anyway, great review!

  • Ugh, I’m sorry that this book was pretty awful : I have seen it around, somewhat, though not really read what it is about, haha 🙂 But now reading your review, well, I don’t really think it would be for me either. Sigh. Girl sounds kind of stupid 😉 You are awesome for reading it, though. <3 Lovely review Joy 🙂

  • Oh sorry it didn’t work for you. It is a new one for me

  • kindlemom1

    This sounds so promising and so freaking interesting. I’m really sad that it was too repetitive (that things works in movies but not books for some reason). Darn, this could have been fabulous I think.

  • I can definitely see why this book wouldn’t work for you. I definitely struggle with books that are too repetitive and her parents sound horrid.

  • Flora’s parents were pretty horrible. I found being in Flora’s head unsettling at first, but then I found it brilliant, because I thought Barr did such an incredible job helping me understand what it’s like to have this type of amnesia. I know I am in the minority, but I did like this book. The interactions between Flora and her brother and the them of being brave just worked for me.

  • Eh, not feeling this one today

  • shootingstarsmag

    It’s an interesting premise, but yeah, I think the repetitive nature of the book would really drive me nuts. And seriously, what parents would leave that child alone?


  • I totally resonate with you, I would probably put GPS on her if I do ever let her go all the way there for no reason other than a boy

  • I actually liked Ground Hog Day but I will be passing on this one. I would be mad all through it!

  • RO

    This sort of sounds interesting, but I think I could get into it a lot more as a movie. As a book, it sounds like it was a little too slow moving. Hugs…