The Song Remains the Same by Allison Winn Scotch
Published by Berkley, Penguin
Publication Date: April 12, 2012
Genres: Contemporary, Women's Fiction
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She’s a wife, a sister, a daughter…but she remembers nothing. Now she must ask herself who she is and choose which stories—and storytellers—to trust. One of only two survivors of a plane crash, Nell Slattery wakes up in the hospital with no memory of it, or who she is, or was. Now she must piece together both body and mind with the help of family and friends who have their own agendas. Although Nell can’t remember all that came before, something just doesn’t sit right with the versions of her history given by her mother, her sister, and her husband.
Desperate for a key to unlock her past, she filters through photos, art, music, and stories, hoping that something will jog her memory, and soon, in tiny bits and pieces, Nell starts remembering. . . .
So Nell wakes up in a hospital and has no idea who she is. She is one of two survivors of a plane crash that killed 152 people. She meets a woman who says she’s her mother and a man who says he’s her husband but she doesn’t recognize them. She meets a stream of people including her sister, her best friend and the other survivor (who was sitting next to her on the plane) with no recognition.
After a month of hospitalization Nell heads home. The person that she’s told she is is not who she wants to be. She hears about a drab, controlling, serious woman when she feels like she should be a colorful, happy and fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of woman. All she has to go on with regard to her past is what her family tells her. She relies on them but soon finds out that what they’ve told her are only half-truths and some flat out lies. She tries to rely on a reporter that she met who will trade interviews for any information he can dig up on her past and even that doesn’t go well.
Nell is obsessed with her father who she finds out is a recluse. He left when Nell was just 13 and though she can’t remember him she’s positive that learning about him, his life and their relationship is key to regaining her memory.
I really loved the blurb in this one. I have to say that I usually love amnesia stories but this one, while it started off well for me, went downhill and kind of stayed there.
Nell’s family, friends and husband are the ones that she’s relying on for information and let me tell you they are the most dysfunctional people on the planet! I disliked all of them almost from the minute I met them on page and that didn’t change throughout the book. I did like Anderson who was her fellow crash survivor but even he had his issues.
The story is a journey for Nell and what she discovers about herself and her past. Unfortunately the book was very slow with not much happening. I know it’s a journey but imho the story could have been AT LEAST 150 pages shorter, if not more.
Nell eventually figures out who she is and remembers her life but the end is not a HEA for her. It was more of a shedding the old and bringing in the new – with an undecided outcome as she planned to make a huge career change – but it truly didn’t seem to bring her happiness and frankly I found it a bit depressing. In the end it was just an ok read for me and I can’t say I’d recommend it.
Rating: 2 out of 5