Shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2018 | In a nutshell: the unforgettable story of a girl with no memory.
Can there ever have been a heroine like Flora Banks? She’s 17 when the book opens, but an accident aged 10 has left her with no short term memory. Then a secret kiss on the beach – with her only friend’s boyfriend – lodges in her mind. Inspired, she sets off alone to follow him, a heart-stopping journey that takes her deep into the Arctic landscapes of Norway, scribbled messages she writes to herself on her arms her only reassurance or guide. Flora does find out the truth about the boy and about herself, but she needs all her courage. A unique mix, part coming-of-age, part psychological thriller, with an almost fairy-tale setting, this is a story that readers will want to read more than once, and one they will want to share with friends too. Unforgettable!
How do you know who to trust when you can't even trust yourself?
Flora is 17 and has anterograde amnesia. She lost the ability to make new memories when she was 10 and has been stuck in her past since. She can't remember anything day-to-day: the joke her friend made, the instructions her parents gave her,
how old she is.
Then she kisses someone she shouldn't – and the next day she remembers it. It's the first time she's remembered anything since she was ten. But the boy is gone – she thinks he's moved to the arctic. Could he somehow be the key to unlocking her memory?
A message from Emily Barr : As I’ve been writing for years and have thirteen books out in the world, I never expected that I’d be announcing a debut all over again.
However, here it is: The One Memory of Flora Banks is my debut book for young adults. I started writing this as a thriller for adults, but as the story unfolded I realised that it was actually something quite different from anything I had previously written.
I wrote it over the course of a couple of years, entirely as a labour of love as I had no idea whether anyone would ‘get’ it or want to publish it. My fantastic agent Lauren pushed me to make it as good as it could possibly be, and to my absolute delight, Penguin came on board to publish it.
The One Memory of Flora Banks follows Flora, a teenage girl who lives with anterograde amnesia and has to re-remember her life several times each day. The book is set against the backdrop of obsessive first love, with a setting that moves between Cornwall and the midnight sun of the Arctic summer. Although it’s a YA book, it’s very much a novel for readers of all ages.
I’m now working on my second YA novel, set in Rio, which will also be published by Penguin.
The new YA sensation you won't be able to forget. The One Memory of Flora Banks is an incredible page-turner of a novel, full of twists and turns, against the backdrop of obsessive first love. It will appeal to fans of We Were Liars and readers of all ages who enjoy gripping commercial thrillers like Before I Go to Sleep.
Teens and YA's love to read and so in addition to the review by one of the Lovereading4kids editorial experts some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel members were also lucky enough to read and review this title.
Aimee Sweet, age 15 - 'the one novel to read...Captivating and unexpected, I’ve never read anything quite like this book.'
Eloise Mae Clarkson, age 14 - 'This book surprised me throughout right up until the very end. It was so well written that none of these events were expected at all and came from out of the blue.'
Olivia Tierney, age 19 - 'It's a heart-breaking, emotional but also an endearing novel. The One Memory of Flora Banks is enchanting and masterfully mixes daydreams with reality as well. It's quite simply a beautiful book that was delightful to read.'
Lola Bridgeman, age 19 - 'Oh my heart. This book deserves to be huge. It is a beautiful, elegant look at how you think you are lost but really you are the one who is found.... Flora is braver and stronger and so vividly brought to life that you will never forget her.'
Jenny Duffy, age 23 - 'Flora’s memory loss was used to excellent effect and Barr really gets the sense of disorientation and confusion across.'
Rebekah Marsh, age 14 - 'The One Memory of Flora Banks portrays the difficulties of living with a disease such as amnesia. However, with Flora the book proves that these difficulties can enhance your life in many ways.'
Erin Zammitt, age 16 - 'You'll fall in love with Flora Banks - and you'll fall in love with this book as well...The writing is so beautiful and unique, and there are so many twists and turns.'
Amelia White, age 17 - 'An amazingly well written story, I really connected with Flora and felt what she was feeling throughout the book. It was cleverly wrote and allowed me to understand what it’s like to have amnesia.'
Megan Abbott, age 18 - 'Devastatingly amazing! This book was such an interesting read and really couldn't put the book down once I had started.'
Grace Spear, age 14 - 'I really enjoyed this book and connected really well with Flora. Everything flowed really well and I loved her adventures.'
Praise from the publishing team : It’s a rare moment when a book comes in that engages our whole team – and with such force. Flora Banks has made us cry and sit up all night, and we are so excited to bring her to readers everywhere around the world. Francesca Dow, Managing Director
Emily’s YA debut compels and completely sweeps me up in its atmosphere every time I read it. In addition to clearly being an extremely accomplished and gripping thriller writer, Emily conveys the light and shade of life as a teenager falling in love and coming of age just brilliantly. To pull off a story narrated by a character like Flora is a fantastic achievement. I LOVE THIS BOOK. Ruth Knowles, Publisher
My heart was in my throat from the first line of Flora’s prologue – this is psychological suspense at its best. Emily Barr’s writing is eerier than an Arctic squall and more beautiful than a serene tundra. Natasha Collie, Senior Marketing Officer
Publication date: 12/01/2017
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
|Publication date:||12th January 2017|
|Publisher:||Penguin Books Ltd|
|Genres:||NewGen - YA Fiction, Reader Reviewed Books, Debuts of the Month, Literary Fiction, Reading Groups, Relationship Stories,|
|Categories:||Romance & relationships stories (Children's / Teenage), Adventure stories (Children's / Teenage),|
Emily Barr worked as a journalist in London but always hankered after a quiet room and a book to write. She went travelling for a year, which gave her an idea for a novel set in the world of backpackers in Asia. This became Backpack, an adult thriller which won the WH Smith New Talent Award, and she has since written eleven more adult novels published in the UK and around the world. The One Memory of Flora Banks is her first novel for young adults. She lives in Cornwall with her partner and their children.More About Emily Barr