Published by HarperTeen on June 10th, 2014
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Magical Realism, YA
Source: ARC borrowed thru Around the World ARC Tours
Welcome to Gardnerville.
A place where no one gets sick. And no one ever dies.
There’s a price to pay for paradise. Every fourth year, the strange power that fuels the town exacts its payment by infecting teens with deadly urges. In a normal year in Gardnerville, teens might stop talking to their best friends. In a fourth year, they’d kill them.
Four years ago, Skylar’s sister, Piper, was locked away after leading sixteen of her classmates to a watery grave. Since then, Skylar has lived in a numb haze, struggling to forget her past and dull the pain of losing her sister. But the secrets and memories Piper left behind keep taunting Skylar—whispering that the only way to get her sister back is to stop Gardnerville’s murderous cycle once and for all
~ There was no way, based on the book’s title, that I was NOT going to read it. I was pretty young in the 80’s (3 when they started) but because of my older brother, the music, the movies, the everything about it were my first loves. I am officially giving this book the BEST TITLE award of 2014. I now feel the compulsion to right books based on U2 and Bangles songs, starring 80’s versions of Bono and Susanna Hoffs as modern day Hardy Boy and Nancy Drew. Hmm.
~ I pride myself on being quirky, weird, morbid and crazy. But I don’t got nothing on this book! I was confused and befuddled through most of it, but interested enough to be okay with the confuzzlement. If you’re a person who likes their books to make a lot of sense, this book might send you to therapy. Picture Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds in book form.
~ This book is like Twin Peaks meets X-Men meets LSD. And I mean that in the best possible way. It worked for me. I loved the strange and horrific things that happen so casually.
~ Skylar is a Gardner, so she’s a direct descendant of the town’s founding family. Which I think would be cool, except for the whole living in a acid trip Shirley Jackson novel.
~ Hmm, would you trade good health and longevity for the mental well being of the town’s youth? I mean, I’m not a huge fan of teens or anything, but I feel like they have it harsher than most. And it doesn’t really seem like the adults are happy, but to be fair we only see things through Skylar’s interactions, and she pretty much only hangs around her mom, grandmother and Elton.
~ This book isn’t just full of strange, it feels a bit like Alice in Wonderland- there’s a fairytale element, only everyone is smoking what the caterpillar is on.
~ Both the chapter titles and the cassettes that Skylar finds are labeled with song titles- I really enjoyed the tapes origins.
~ There should be no skimming of this book. It already doesn’t make sense (again, in a good way), but if you pay attention, things will make more and more sense. Sort of. Because Gardnerville is just insane in the brain (insane in the membrane!).
~ While I figured out some stuff, there’s plenty of clues, other things definitely came as a surprise. GG in particular dropped some shock and awe type discoveries on me. GG was the best!
~ There is a little bit of romance in the book, but it’s not the main focus- that would be all on Skylar and her journey to stop blurring her life and wiping her memories. Seeing Gardnerville for the effed up place it really is.
~ Oh, Foote. He has lots of secrets too- only he knows his own, whereas Skylar has forgotten hers.
~ I don’t like rats. I like them even less now.
~ This may not be the book for everyone, but I think if you’re open to weird, than you need to read this. If you can watch Doctor Who, and Twin Peaks, or liked Pushing Daisies and the Twilight Zone, or anything fantastical and gruesome- this book if for you.
~ About the madness in the town peaking every 4 years- I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we hold elections every four years, do you?
Skylar- main character, spends beginning of book in a forgetful drug haze.
Piper- older sister, baby did a bad, bad thing 4 years ago.
Elton- teacher turned town “savior”, was involved with Piper.
Foote- recent newcomer to Gardnerville, there’s something about him that both attracts and repels Skylar.
Meg- she’s the Miss Bingley of the book, so we hate her. Well, I hated her, but it’s true that I’m also jealous that she works in a bookstore with Mr. Darcy, er, Matt.
The Quints- they make the drugs that make Gardnerville tolerable.
Jonathan- one of Elton’s followers and drug supplier to Skylar.
LuAnn- Johnny’s sister, who went mad and is now back from reformatory.
Ozzy- Skylar’s inside connection into the reformatory.
Angie- Elton’s current partner, mother of his child.
Lachman Gardner- town founder.
GG- Skylar’s grandmother, she is AWESOME.
Wills- Skylar’s little brother. Not sure why his name was Wills and not Will, but I kind of dig it.
This may seem like a random midnight moment, because it really didn’t have anything to do with the main plot or Skylar, but I loved the imagery of the ballerina who turned her fellow dancers into dancing trees.
Although, I did enjoy GG revealing how Lachman Gardner founded Gardnerville.
Stop the Clock:
I had a lot of fun with this book. It took me a little longer to get into than it should have, but I was a bit confused. Once I committed to reading it though, it flew by. It’s a strange little book, but definitely worth my time! It wasn’t quite a Midnight Read, but it has all the elements that entertained my twisted mind.
(Don’t You) Forget About Me gets a Midnight Book rating of: