By Lara Avery
Genre: Juvenile Fiction
Curriculum Subject: Family Life: Parents/Siblings/Babies, Personal Development: Loss, Teen Life: Relationships/Sexuality
Grades: 10th & up
Sammie McCoy is a girl with a plan: graduate at the top of her class and get out of her small town as soon as possible. Nothing will stand in her way—not even the rare genetic disorder the doctors say will slowly steal her memories and then her health.
So the memory book is born: a journal written to Sammie’s future self, so she can remember everything from where she stashed her study guides to just how great it feels to have a best friend again. It’s where she’ll record every perfect detail of her first date with longtime-crush Stuart, a gifted young writer home for the summer. And where she’ll admit how much she’s missed her childhood friend Cooper, and the ridiculous lengths he will go to make her laugh. The memory book will ensure Sammie never forgets the most important parts of her life—the people who have broken her heart, those who have mended it–and most of all, that if she’s going to die, she’s going to die living.
This moving and remarkable novel introduces an inspiring character you’re sure to remember, long after the last page.
★ “[Sammie’s] narrative voice is sardonic, distinctive, wildly intelligent, and sometimes hilarious… Readers will feel her mind and heart shifting with the illness. Indelible.” —Kirkus
★ “Avery crafts an emotionally charged story about a young woman who has kept her eyes trained on the future, only to learn that all she has is now… Avery’s novel stands out for its strong characters, a heartbreaking narrative that shifts to reflect Sammie’s condition, and a love story that will leave many readers in tears.” —Publishers Weekly
★ “Sammie’s voice is a bright, relatable, and uncompromising one, and when her inevitable decline begins, readers will be surprised and pained by it, right along with the book’s fiercely undeterred protagonist. Strengths abound in Avery’s touching novel, and Sammie’s relationships, both friendly and romantic, are no exception.” —School Library Journal
★ “Avery brings an emotional honesty to Sammie’s narrative… Teens will be inspired by Avery’s heart-rending story about a special and intelligent young woman coping with a devastating disease—a story buoyed by the strong love of family flowing through Sammie’s narrative and by an exquisite love story in which Sammie experiences happiness with Coop.” —VOYA