Author : Hannah Beckerman
Title : The Forgetting
Pages : 300
Publisher : Amazon Publishing UK
Publication date : April 1, 2023
| ABOUT THE BOOK |
When Anna Bradshaw wakes up in a hospital bed in London, she remembers nothing, not even her loving husband, Stephen. The doctors say her amnesia is to be expected, but Anna feels cut adrift from her entire life.
In Bristol, Livvy Nicholson is newly married to Dominic and eager to get back to work after six months’ maternity leave. But when Dominic’s estranged mother appears, making a series of unnerving claims, Livvy is sucked into a version of herself she doesn’t recognise.
A hundred miles apart, both women feel trapped and disorientated, and their stories are about to collide. Can they uncover the secret that connects them and reconstruct their fractured lives?
| MY THOUGHTS |
Two women. Two stories that are about to collide. But how?
Anna lives in London. The victim of a car accident, she wakes up in hospital not remembering a single thing about her life. Not even her husband, Stephen. But it’s him she will have to trust, to guide her through this new life, until maybe one day she will remember everything again.
In Bristol, the reader meets Livvy. After six months maternity leave, she is looking forward to going back to work but the universe seems to have other ideas and keeps putting hindrances in her path. These mostly seem to come from her husband, Dominic.
Both of these women are feeling trapped and utterly powerless in their marriages. ‘The Forgetting‘ is very much a story about domestic abuse and I must admit I became incredibly frustrated at the fact that these women didn’t realise they were being manipulated. Livvy, especially, as an independent woman with the support of her family, could have walked out any minute. While the things Dominic does are often supposed to come across as subtle guidances, to me they looked as obvious as the nose on my face, and I became increasingly annoyed at Livvy for not seeing what I was seeing. For Anna, things are very different. She has nobody but her husband. With no family and no friends, she finds herself completely isolated in a house she doesn’t even remember and with no choice but to trust this stranger, because where would she be without him? That scenario is immensely unsettling. But again with the frustration, because I found myself with a bunch of questions that she just wasn’t asking.
It’s hard not to become quite angry at times, though. Because we know these things happen, because we know there are women out there who find themselves in situations like these, who can’t see a way out, who maybe don’t even quite understand what’s happening to them. Like Livvy, I suppose, who is slowly but surely turning into a version of herself nobody recognises. If I could have reached into this book and strangled a character or two, I totally would have.
At some point, these two stories will collide. Unfortunately for me, the whole plot turned out to be extremely predictable and I figured things out way too soon. It’s very much a case of been-there-done-that, especially for people who read a lot in this psychological thriller genre. Despite that, and the amount of eye-rolling I did at Livvy’s chapters, ‘The Forgetting‘ is, at times, rather a compelling and absorbing read. There’s absolutely no way that you can’t become totally invested in the lives of these women, that you don’t root for them, that you hope Livvy gets away, and that Anna remembers.
However, all in all, I’d say ‘The Forgetting‘, although well written, is unoriginal and lacks suspense. I often found myself considering calling it quits since I knew what was coming, maybe somehow expecting I’d be proven wrong. For the most part, an okay read but it doesn’t really stand out from the crowd, and I have a feeling I will have forgotten all about it by dinner time.
My thanks to the publisher for the review copy, which I received via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.
What a shame. The blurb sounds so good.
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Lured in by the “read now”. Meanie McMeanies 😉
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Fab review! You kind of make me feel glad that I didn’t have time to read an ARC… It sounds like this book would have frustrated me a LOT. xD
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