Title: False Memory
Author: Dan Krokos
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Series: False Memory (Book 1)
Publication Date: August 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover, 336 Pages
ISBN-10: 1423149769 (Hyperion Books)
ISBN-13: 978-1423149767 (Hyperion Books)
Reviewed by: Kayla
Miranda wakes up alone on a park bench with no memory. In her panic, she releases a mysterious energy that incites pure terror in everyone around her. Except Peter, a boy who isn’t at all surprised by Miranda’s shocking ability.
Left with no choice but to trust this stranger, Miranda discovers she was trained to be a weapon and is part of an elite force of genetically-altered teens who possess flawless combat skills and powers strong enough to destroy a city. But adjusting to her old life isn’t easy—especially with Noah, the boyfriend she can’t remember loving.
Then Miranda uncovers a dark truth that sets her team on the run. Suddenly her past doesn’t seem to matter…when there may not be a future.
Quick & Dirty: False Memory = Maximum Ride. Only better. With less pending apocalyptic-global-disasters. But there are still the “what the heck?” twists and jaw dropping moments.
Opening Sentence: In the food court I find a mall cop leaning against a pillar.
Miranda walks into a mall and tells a mall cop she lost her memory. She can’t remember a single thing about her life besides her name. Totally understandable right? Well the mall cop doesn’t think so, telling her to scat and quit playing jokes on people. Miranda is persistent and keeps asking for help, but the mall cop is also stubborn and threatens to kick her out of the mall. That’s when everything turns to chaos. A bright wave of heat washes over Miranda in the mall and suddenly the cop’s on the ground and everyone else is running in different directions, jumping off balconies or screaming in their panic to escape the mall. This has Miranda freaking out, but then she notices one boy not affected by the pandemonium. Peter tells her that she’s part of a group that has been genetically altered to create mass panic with just a thought. But this power also frays her brain’s memory capabilities, and so they all have to take shots everyday to keep from forgetting. But someone has tampered with her shots and now she forgets her team of four, her boyfriend that claims to still love her, and the life she had a week ago. But just as she starts to accept her crazy experiment life, she finds out that their caretakers — the ones who trained them and brought them up — plan to sell them as weapons (and not necessarily to the US’s government). Everything spirals out of control from there. With twists at every turn, Krokos’s debut book blows the rest of the science fiction genre out of the water. Step aside Maximum Ride. Miranda and her crew are ready to save the world.
If you love Maximum Ride (or the idea of genetically altered teens), False Memory will be your new favorite book. At least it was for me. Krokos keeps your attention as if your memory depends on it. There are unexpected turns and “holy crow, I did not see that coming” moments. I wish there was more world-building in this book, but that would have taken away from the action and the fast pace. Some questions are left unanswered creating a smidgeon of suspense. Okay, maybe more like a whopping of suspense. Seriously, this could have been an all nighter book.
Miranda reminds me so much of Max from James Patterson’s series. She’s strong and always up for a fight. Miranda is also torn between two guys: Noah, the boyfriend she doesn’t remember and Peter, the boy who’s always been there for her whether she remembers or not. I think the relationships could have been developed better. So far the romances are surface only, nothing deep. But it prepares us for the next book!
Some of the parts of the book are a tad creepy (again referencing Maximum Ride): Miranda and the group have clones (end reference) and each clone has the same feelings for each other. Just a tad weird but hey, it’s science fiction. This book is amazing and seriously, you should go buy it.
Dr. Tycast shrugs. “That’s your mission. To find out. Go see Peter. I’ll brief the both of you tomorrow morning.” He begins to stand but stops. Sinks back into his chair and spreads his hands flat on the table. “What happened in the mall was not your fault. For now, I need you to put it out of your mind. We will take care of the families. Do you understand?”
Hearing the words doesn’t help, but I nod. Dr. Tycast tries to stand again.
“Wait,” I say. “Tell me what this place is all about. Tell me what I’m for. Really.”
He studies me while he considers his words. “You’re part of an experiment. To attain peace through chaos. You are the hope for a better tomorrow.”
“Sounds kind of cliche, Doctor.”
He nods. “very. But that’s one of the sacrifices we make.”
He finally stands up and leaves the cell, which is now just a room.
The door stays open.
False Memory Series:
1. False Memory
2. False Sight (August 2013)
FTC Advisory: Hyperion Books provided me with a copy of False Memory. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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