30 October 2015

When I Was Me by Hilary Freeman

Series: N/A, Standalone
Publication date: September 3, 2015
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Genres: YA, Thriller
Format: Physical review copy
Source: The publisher in exchange for an honest review
Pages: 262

Rating: ★★★/5

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If you can't trust yourself, then who can you trust?

When Ella wakes up one Monday morning, she discovers that she is not herself and that her life is not her own.

She looks different, her friends are no longer her friends and her existence has been erased from the internet. Ella worries she has gone mad - especially as nobody else thinks that anything weird has happened. What has gone wrong with her life? How can Ella piece it all together?

A tense and dark psychological thriller full of unexpected twists and turns about the random events and decisions that make us who we are.

I'm going to keep this on the shorter side since I don't have that much to say about the book. 

When I Was Me is told by Ella, our main character. She is 17-years-old and her life is not what it seems. The line that sums up the entire book is; you have memories of things that haven't happened, but no memory of the things that have?. That's basically what the whole book is about.

When I Was Me starts with a prologue which, just like every other prologue, confused me. And then the first chapter begins with; Something isn't right. I didn't like the way I was confused by the prologue, because it wasn't 'good' confused it was 'bored and I have no idea what's going on'-confused
I was expecting a lot of mystery and a lot of confusion since the book is about a girl having 'memories of things that haven't happened and no memory of things that have' but I was just bored to be honest. I went into this thinking it would keep me hooked until I turned the last page but I didn't find it at all hard to put down.
Often I find the main characters frustrating in YA literature but I was quite indifferent to Ella.
So, to summarize; I was bored and indifferent throughout the majority of the book.

After reading the synopsis I think I was expecting something along the lines of Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington - a book I read and absolutely loved last year. That one is actually about a girl who has to lives. She wakes up, live her life, goes to sleep, wakes up and lives her other life throughout the book. It's so interesting and I wish When I Was Me had more in common with Between the Lives but I can't say they have anything at all.

SPOILER The theory is that Ella's subconsciousness has somehow landed in an alternate universe and I was quite exited about that in the beginning as it is quite interesting and NEW, BUT I quickly found it bland, I guess, and I wish the story had taken another turn instead - I have no idea where to though! SPOILER

As always a little non-spoilery comment on the ending; it surprised me and it was probably my favorite part of the entire book. I found it nerve-wracking and thought-provoking and just plain exciting. I also love how there's more endings than one! Yes, there is and it's definitely my absolute favorite part of the book. To say I was surprised is an understatement.

I had expected a tense and dark psychological thriller but that was not what I received. I didn't connect with the main character, I didn't find the story intriguing or interesting and it really didn't want to keep me reading. All the things I usually love about psychological thrillers were missing in When I Was Me. The ending was pretty good though, as you can probably tell from my excitement above, but other than that, not so much.
If you decide to read the book I seriosuly hope you enjoy it more than I did!

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