London Lane has amnesia, Fifty First Dates style. As in, every night at 4:33 a.m. her mind becomes a blank slate. However, unlike Drew Barrymore, London can remember her future.
This little malady as you might imagine, causes her some difficulties. Since she keeps this a secret from everyone but her mother and her best friend Jamie, all her teachers and schoolmates just think she is hopelessly stupid and forgetful. London programs her phone and writes herself helpful reminders (that seem completely unhelpful) like what to wear that day. I keep wondering why she doesn’t print out her class schedule or keep some sort of detailed dossier, but this is just one of the many things that drives me nuts about her freakish imaginary mental disorder.
After I finished this book I kept having a hard time nailing down exactly what it was that made me hate poor, afflicted London. After taking a quick second look through the book it came rushing back to me. Its not just Cat Patrick’s limp, teenage-attempt-at-poetry writing, or the major plot holes or incongruities or the empty dialogue. I mean, it’s some of those things. But mainly I hate London because she is a whiny, self-obsessed bitch. This is the girl that thinks things like,”even though I have the benefit of knowing that I’ll grow more beautiful each day- and that Carly will never look better than she does right now…” or that frequently notes that her best friend (and only person that can stand her) Jamie, looks “alarmingly like a hooker” and is the “kind of girl boys love to flirt with-not date.”
Jeez with friends like these! London also has a less than charming Bella Swan-esque habit of disdaining anyone that seems eager to be kind or friendly to her. I think, we the reader, are supposed to infer that these unfortunates that always are around to lend London gym clothes, or help her in class, are ‘uncool’ and therefore worthy of London’s inner-monologue sneers. Know that I think of it, London really is the poor man’s Bella Swan here; no magical boyfriends, but plenty of moaning, ‘adorable’ clumsiness, and general lack-of-personality disorder.
Instead of Edward, London has Luke Henry, omg-so-cute new boy whose ‘vintage band tshirts’ and ‘chuck taylors’ let us know that he’s so hipster and like, totally bored with the whole mainstream style, man. Oh, and he’s an artist. When London meets Luke she can’t remember him, or I guess more accurately, can’t future (I will now be using this as a verb, take note) him. Major plot hole alert.
Let me ruin the rest of it for you…
London is all concerned because she can’t future Luke–she has to write herself notes so she knows the next day who he is and that their dating and whatnot. This has the added (dubious) bonus of the reader getting reintroduced to Luke. Every. Day. Every chapter we get to meet him again for the first time and hear how hot he is. God that’s fun. Then Luke takes her on a date in a van in the middle of the woods (oh, yeh, it’s tres romantique)–they fall asleep, time resets, she freaks out because she woke up in a van in the woods with a strange (but so hottt) guy, etc. Luke is oddly not thrown by her “omg who are you!?” morning panic attack.
We find out why when Luke lets it slip that he already knew about her memory problem. Apparently they were friends as kids at YMCA camp. And she told him about her amnesia (maybe it wasn’t a secret then?) and she re-introduced herself everyday. And unsurprisingly, all the kids and teachers hated her then too. For some reason London is very upset about finding this out. She throws around words like betrayal and liar and also accuses him of somehow taking advantage of her (which doesn’t make sense, and she doesn’t attempt to explain). It is a huge, sobby, freakout session that involves her hiding her notes about him in the closet and telling her mother never to mention his name again (just like Drew Barrymore btw).
It goes way over the top into a dramafest.
This lasts exactly half a day
Because at school she falls in love with him again. At least their separation didn’t last a whole book where she learned how to fix a motorcycle and cliff dive. Should I mention the sideplot where Jamie has an affair with her teacher and tries to kill herself (in the future)?
But I should mention that London has a recurring dream about a funeral, and it takes her almost the whole book to realize it’s a PAST memory about her her baby brother’s funeral. Then she miraculously remembers her brother being kidnapped from their parked car when she unlocked the doors for a stranger with a puppy (they always have puppies don’t they?). That’s when her weird mind problems started and her mom thought it was best to just not remind her about her dead brother. This is getting weird huh? Just wait.
Then London futures that she and Luke find the kidnappers about five years from now, follow one of them down an alley and accuse him of murdering her baby brother. And then Luke gets shot and dies. And that’s why she doesn’t remember him. Just when you start to think this story can’t get anymore preposterous…
London’s mom happens to be pals with a local police officer. London explains that she just now remembers what the kidnappers look like, and that they had a piece of paper with the word ‘Beacon’ on it (she made these clever clues up to disguise her mind powers).
Using these hard-hitting ‘clues,’ this small town cop tracks the kidnappers to Beacon, London (the city, not the dumb girl). In less than an hour.
We are then to surmise that London changed the future, because know she can remember Luke. AND her brother, because he’s alive and they find him and stuff. You know, not now, but in the future.
I’m literally just sitting here, drinking a coke zero and shaking my head.
I have nothing more to say about this.