Title: Thanks for the Memories
Author: Cecilia Ahern
Genre: Contemporary fiction, speculative fiction
Publisher: William Morrow
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Source: Audiobook from the public library
Audiobook reader: Sile Bermingham
First line: Close your eyes and stare into the dark.
Justin Hitchcock, a divorced American art and architecture professor, is talked into donating blood in spite of his fear of needles. In Dublin, Joyce Conway undergoes a blood transfusion after a horrible accident that almost takes her life. After she leaves the hospital and tries to put together the pieces of her life, she starts to undergo some very strange experiences: knowing things she doesn’t remember learning, having dreams of people that she’s never seen before – dreams that seem to be memories. Could the new blood that is running through her veins be imparting the donor’s thoughts and past?
Thanks for the Memories was my first experience with Cecilia Ahern, and, honestly, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. I figured it would be some light and fluffy chick lit, but I wanted to listen to it because it is read by Sile Bermingham, the amazing Irish actress who reads most of Maeve Binchy’s books.
I was wrong to prejudge this book. Yes, it is definitely women’s fiction, but it was only light in the best sense of the word – that it was easy to get drawn into. First of all, there was a ton of humor in the story, most of which was provided by Joyce’s aging father, who was my favorite character in the book. I loved the relationship that father and daughter shared, the way he supported her as she tried to reinvent herself after the accident.
The writing was terrific, too, with some great descriptions of the people and places, and some fun metaphors – not so funny they drew me out of the story, but just enough to give me a chuckle. There wasn’t anything surprising in the book, but I didn’t mind that I knew how things would turn out – I thoroughly enjoyed watching things unfold. I will definitely look forward to more of Ahern’s books – and if they’re read by Sile Bermingham, then that’s all the better!