“My cousin Danielle was twenty-six when she died. According to the police she jumped from the balcony of her flat, which, in the words of my foster-mother, wasn’t a very nice way to go. What a stupid thing to say. is Death ever ‘nice’?”
Dani jumped from the her balcony, it was suicide plain and simple - according to the police - but Sophie doesn’t think so. Dani was a little hit and miss at times but Sophie had just spent a great weekend with her and the pieces just didn’t fit together, especially after Sophie finds a memory stick that belonged to Dani. With the police not doing anything about it Sophie enlists the help of her old best friend Reece and the pair take the detective work into their own hands. Soon it becomes clear that Dani was involved in something big, something that may have caused her death, but getting too close to the truth is dangerous for them and they have to face things they never thought they would.
When I saw the trailer for Gina Blaxill’s new book, Forget Me Never, I knew I’d have to read it as soon as possible. I love a good crime thriller and it sounded right up my street. Now I’ve had the change to read it, I was definitely right in expecting a great story, but Forget Me Never isn’t just a crime thriller, with Sophie’s conflicts about her past and her family and Reece’s family relying on him strongly there is so much more to the story than meets the eye.
The story is great, Sophie is fully aware that the truth isn’t that Dani took her own life but has no prove, just as she’s getting over it she finds a memory stick and things click into place about the weekend Dani died. I did think that Sophie jumped to conclusions when she saw what was on the stick but once Reece mentioned that the guy Dani went off with on the day of her death was one of the guys in the pictures on the stick I thought maybe they were onto something. It takes a while to get to the bottom of what Dani was involved in but once you get there the pace picks up ten fold and I sped to the end of the book after that. Whilst they are figuring it all out though you pick up on things like Sophie and Reece’s feelings towards each other and their problems with their family’s and the past. Both of them have their own problems and it doesn’t help that they haven’t really spoken for a few months so theres a bit of tension between them anyway. I thought their relationship worked really well and drew me in to the story really well.
The characters are interesting and to be honest, some a terrifying. Gina Blaxill does a great job of making you like the characters you are meant to like - Reece, Sophie and Neve - and hating the ones you are meant to hate - Cherrie, Aiden and various others. I loved Reece and really felt sorry for everything he’d been through and was having to deal with. Sophie was a little immature at times but given her background, the school bully and the assumptions people often made about her; I could forgive her about that. I think Reece’s mother, Effie, was one of the hardest characters for me to like, I could tell how much she cared for her son and daughter but she took things too far and was awful to Sophie a lot of the time. I know it was because she didn’t want Reece to be hurt but still, she was a biatch! Julie, Sophie’s foster mum, was lovely and I really wished throughout the story that Sophie would confide in her more. You could really tell that Julie wanted Sophie to but found it difficult and often thought it wasn’t her place to push Sophie but I really did like her.
Forget Me Never covers a verity of topics.... There’s a major crime element to it but I don’t want to give much away so I’m not going to go into that. However there’s also mental health, death, bereavement, friendship, love, family, foster care and a serious case of growing up and coming to terms with things. I really loved how it was all covered and that you got Reece’s side of the story too. Reece’s chapters were often shorter than Sophies but the split perspective worked well and explained why Reece was going along with what seemed like a crazy plan at the beginning.
The only problem I encountered with my reading of Forget Me Never was the fact that sometimes the voices seemed pretty genuine but at others they seemed to old, using language that didn’t quite fit and not really swearing (the worst either of them says is ‘bloody’) even under the worst situations - and they have bad ones! - It kinda made it feel a little less genuine for me but I still enjoyed it and I would definitely recommend this to teens of all ages.
Forget Me Never was published on September 27th by MacMillan Children’s Books. My copy was sent from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
For more info please visit: