Who Am I? What Happened? Teen Memory Loss Novels

BookendsCindy: I looked at a friend across a table yesterday and could not remember her name. Rather than worry about aging, though, I’m going to chalk it up to the epidemic of amnesia cases in YA lit. I think it’s rubbing off on me.

With Malice by Eileen CookEarlier this year I read With Malice (2016) by Eileen Cook and knew I had found something to booktalk with my teens this fall. Jill wakes up in the hospital with no memory of the past 6 weeks. (I can’t read a book about a teen waking up in a hospital bed without thinking about Peter Dickinson’s Eva [1988], where a dying girl’s consciousness is transferred into a chimpanzee.) Upon waking, Jill is eager to talk to her best friend, Simone, and get answers from the doctors about whether or not she can still go on a school trip to Italy. When Jill learns that she has already been to Italy and was involved in the automobile accident that killed Simone, her world is rocked big time. Boom! Booktalk done—just be sure you have enough copies.

Lynn: I can’t remember what book I was going to review for this post! Happily the list below will get me reading. Don’t you think my “memory” lapse is wonderfully convenient? Since I forgot to also work on this post, Cindy has done all the heavy lifting!

Here are some of the new titles and a few old favorites that we are including in a new readers’ guide for our teen readers called “Who Am I and What Happened?” What memory loss titles are we forgetting . . . we did mention that we have memory issues, didn’t we?

don't look backDon’t Look Back (2014) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

My Second Life (2016) by Faye Bird

Eva (1988) by Peter Dickinson

Everyone We’ve Been (Oct. 2016) by Sarah Everett

Escape from Memory (2003) by Margaret Peterson Haddix

My Memory Jar by Elissa Janine HooleThe Memory Jar (2016) by Elissa Janine Hoole

False Memory (2012) by Dan Krokos

We Were Liars (2014) by E. Lockhart

Forgotten (2011) by Cat Patrick

The Adoration of Jenna Fox (2008) by Mary Pearson





About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees. Follow Bookends on Twitter at @BookendsBlog. You can also find Cindy at @cdobrez and Lynn at @482april.

Post a Comment