A fun and adventurous urban dystopia
Author: Natasha Ngan
Publisher: Hot Key Books
My ratings: 3 out of 5 stars
Released: 4th September, 2014
After the success of Elites, I was quite keen to read another Natasha Ngan book. The Memory Keepers ticked all the boxes and I was really excited about the book.
The Memory Keepers is set in a future London (yes!) where memory can be extracted from humans and stored in a external storage device. These memories can then me stored or are traded in the market for profit or loss. As this is a dystopian, we have the rich North side of London where the wealthy and influential live and the starving, dying population lives in the Southside where they scrape by a living. Seen lives in this Southside, an orphan and a thief. He main job is to steal memories from the rich and sell them on the black market. On one such occasion he manages to get caught by Alba the daughter of the Chief law Enforcement Officer. However instead on turning him in, Alba decided to become explore the life in Southside. Obviously, soon everything comes crashing down on them as they find themselves with more than they can chew.
The Memory Keepers had everything going for it but somehow it ended not being the exciting fix I was hoping it would be. While I liked Seven and found his dialect funny and his POV insightful I did not 'connect' with Alba. I do get the rich poor girl troupe but it still failed to impress me. Saying that I really liked how the romance between Seven and Alba was done. It was slow and it built around you like a cosy blanket and towards the end you want to scream,'Just kiss already'.
The world building was dark, grim and gritty. the poverty and the over-indulgence, side by side made for excellent reading and the setting of London added an extra layer of imagination which hit home, enabling the reader to 'feel' the atmosphere and smell the air. While there were a few things about the basic plots I had me scratching my head for answers, it did not lead me away from the main story.
Overall, The Memory Keeper was a fun and exciting urban dystopian which keeps the mystery and the danger at the right level and makes you simmer with anticipation.
Review copy received from Hot Key books, UK