Take Back The Memory, by Augustine Sam was a book I was supposed to review a long time ago, but my laptop crashed, and if you’ve been following my other blog, you know I lost all my files, my WIPs (sob!) and a load of other stuff when that happened. Yeah, sad, I know, but what can you do, it’s irretrievable apparently. Anyway, on with the review.
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
Summary: Paige Lyman is a psychiatrist who becomes, you could say, unhinged after her husband’s sudden death. Her daughter insists that she meet a doctor. She reveals to the psychiatrist (a colleague of hers in the medical world) that she grew up in Kenya and was in love with a boy named Bill, who left her to become a priest. She turns vengeful, and seeks revenge by seducing other priests.
What is good about this book is the level of detail – the scenes are described vividly and we can visualize the scenes as they happen. You realize early on that Paige Lyman’s heartbreak has turned her into a Ms Havisham kind of character and she will go to a ridiculous extent to exact her revenge.
What is bad about this book is also its level of detail. Perhaps, I should not say “bad,” just that it is not really my kind of book. There are a lot (and I do mean – a LOT) of graphic scenes. It is strange more so because it does not mesh well with the overall plot; and it is sad that it makes up for the larger portion of the narrative.
Narrative Technique and Language: Some sentences sway into purple territory – breezes have been compared to caresses in contexts where the metaphor does not quite fit in.
The book begins with Paige’s daughter Diane noticing that the former has been talking to herself lately. Suddenly the narrative shifts, and we view Paige’s thoughts. This POV shift happens quite a bit, causing a bit of a jumble in the reader’s mind.
Overuse of adverbs: While I am not against adverbs myself, several writers strongly discourage their usage, especially when verbs are used in that manner [for instance: the tip of his fountain pen pressed against his lips, seemingly distractedly, yet deliberately]. In this book, even I can’t seem to let go of the excessive usage.
Repetitive Flashback: Paige would mention an incident to the doctor and then start from the beginning to describe it in detail. The “newspaper headline” pattern was unnecessary, or could have been presented differently.
Paige’s character is not very likeable. She insults the natives, and their language. Her dialogues (not to mention her adventures) seem implausible, at least in the way they have been presented.
Her doctor is a stoic gentleman, whose indifference can get annoying.
All-in-all, I have to say this book was probably not for me – I like my plots to be fleshier, but with less (and unnecessary) flashes of flesh, if you know what I mean.
Overall Rating: 2/5
Available at: Amazon.
Note: The author sent me a PDF copy of the book for review.