The Memory Child by Steena Holmes

Originally posted 2016-01-17 08:00:19.

I’ve been reading some real winners on Kindle Unlimited lately, and The Memory Child is no exception. This one wasn’t quite as terrible as I’ve grown accustomed to, in fact, I actually enjoyed it. That being said, it was incredibly predictable, and a really cool twist was mangled by Holmes revealing too much too soon. Spoilers ahead.

Diane never wanted to be a mother, but when her husband of over a decade knocks her up, she decides to keep the little bugger and play happy family. This, however, required much convincing from her boo, Brian, as Diane works as some bigwig president of a company. Nevertheless, she attempts to embrace motherhood, and just as she is getting in the spirit, Brian is forced to go on a two-week-long business trip to England. That’s really all Diane remembers, and then suddenly she is home with a live-in nurse/nanny lady and Brian still hasn’t made it back from England. And everyone is acting super weird around her and little baby Grace. She introduces her sister to the baby, yet said sister is awkward and uncomfortable around the child. This is also the case with the owner of a restaurant that Diane and Brian had frequented for years. Diane is none too pleased that no one seems to like Grace, and equally nonplussed that she herself is being treated with kid gloves by everyone she meets.

There are heavy-handed clues coating every page of The Memory Child, which is sad because had Holmes been a bit more subtle, the ending would have blown me away. Diane had been taking Brian to the airport for the London trip when they were in a car accident, killing Brian and the baby. When Diane’s memory unfogs she is back home, but a doll has arrived in the mail from her employer that has been sculpted to look exactly like the dead baby. So, still completely traumatized, Diane begins treating the doll as her child and the nurse can’t bear to tell her otherwise.

Again, this was a really cool concept, but too much was revealed way too soon. Like, first page of the book too soon. Could have been, should have been. Damn you, Kindle Unlimited. Damn you.

Previously published on on 9/12/2015